The water association meeting with our neighbors last night went very well, we've been approved to add a second connection to the main water line so that we can irrigate our orchard. We had a nice discussion over pie and coffee, and agreed (wholeheartedly) to sign something to the effect that this connection can't be used in the future to supply a whole additional house. Current county zoning laws forbid a second house on our parcel, but zoning laws change, and even though we'd never try to push through a lot division or anything, if we ever sold the property who knows what could happen. So now we can start buying & planting fruit trees! We won't actually put in the connection until spring, but knowing that we have the permission we could go ahead and start planting now - no irrigation will be needed over the winter months, that's for sure!
In fact, some of you might be wondering why I'm so concerned about irrigation at all, given that we live in soggy whatcom county. True, it's wet most of the year, but sometimes we have long, dry summers (like last year) and especially in the first few years trees need to be watered regularly so they can get established. Grapes and berries, with their shallower root systems, will need water in dry years even after they are established. We won't need a lot of water, but when we do need some it will be crucial to have it available.
It was nice to see all our neighbors and visit a little about what everyone's been up to. We always wave when we pass on the driveway, but it's not really the same as a visit. Of course, everyone is excited about Conan's upcoming arrival. Our neighbor Florence really stole the show by giving us this beautiful baby sweater she knit for him. It's simply gorgeous:
I can hardly wait to see him wearing it!