Nature Welcomed in 2022 With a Beauty Shower

by on January 25, 2022 · 1 comment

in Ocean Beach

by Kathy Blavatt

On a January morning, I happily to awoke to greet the rain that had soaked my thirsty yard. The Twisted Juniper outside my bedroom window literally looked like it was dancing with joy among sparkling jeweled droplets.

2021 was a drought year. Sunset Cliffs Natural Park was primarily full of dried brown plants.

The Twisted Juniper dancing. All photos by Kathy Blavatt

Now as 2022 rolled in so did the storm clouds. The darkened sky dumped several weeks of rain on top of long awaiting seeds. New life pushed up through the rain-drenched soil sprouting green.

The rains brought invigorating new life to the small Torrey Pines planted along the park’s paths.

New life

Throughout December 2021, I kept waiting for rain so I could try out my new rainwater connection system that feeds rainwater from my roof gutters into a black flexible hose (1-1/4 Inch X 24 Foot Sump Pump Discharge Hose Kit sold at Harbor Freight).

An Ocean Beach friend who does 3-D printing, Craig Gottschalk, Projects, LLC Specialty-  3D Printing and Design, made my gutter end pieces attachments that allowed the sump pump hoses to screw into it.

This attachment made it easy to move the hose around to different areas dispersing the rainwater throughout my garden. The long hoses allow me to deep water my fruit trees and soak drier areas.

Home Depot sells 4 inch wide black flexible drainage hoses that I had already preplaced on the ground, so I could place the thinner hose into the larger hose which was already laying in prime locations for soaking or distribution of water.

I collected extra rainwater to use over time by running the sump hose into covered heavy-duty trashcans

Craig ended up designing me two different gutter end pieces because I had an old metal system on the front of the house and a new plastic gutter on the edge of my patio roof. (Craig can be reached at the following email:

After installing my new rainwater collection hoses, I started planting my winter garden vegetables and seeds. They are a very important part of the vegetarian meals I cook.

Having been a vegetarian since I was 17, I was recently inspired by an article on Plant Based News (a UK-based digital media outlet), by Jemima Webber, November 30, 2021, ‘World’s Oldest’ Person Dies At 124: Family Says Vegetables Were The ‘Secret’, Members of the Susano family were interviewed.

The article’s key points about Lola Francisca Susana’s life, and her longevity include the following: She lived in Negros Occidental, Philippines. Susano was reported to have been the oldest person in the world, born on September 11, 1897, died at the age of 124. She also had 14 children, one who is centenarian at 101 years old. According to CNN Philippines, Susano was last living person born in the 19th century. Guinness World Records was still in the process of verifying the documentation required to grant Susano the official title of world’s oldest person.

The Susano family believed her vegetable-rich diet of fresh vegetables and fruits was a proponent in her longevity. Her family grew produce without using pesticides. Susano was fond of sweet potato, okra, pumpkin, and eggplant, as well as oatmeal and laswa (boiled in vegetable soup). She didn’t eat pork, only small amounts of other meats. She also abstained from alcohol.

As an historian, I am amazed by the longevity of many Ocean Beach residents that have lived into their nineties and over a hundred.

Recently a friend’s mother passed away at 99 years old in April 2021. The second to the last time I spoke to her we were planning her 100th Birthday party. Sadly, she didn’t quite make it.

Her son decided a nice way to remember and share her love of flowers was to make and give away seedballs that could be put into neighborhood gardens. He made the seedballs with clay, potting soil,  poppy, sweet pea and marigold seeds.

My husband designed a holiday box, with a garden gnome image, to put in front of the house as a way to give out the seedballs.

A neighbor friend stuck three of the brown round seedballs in a Ziplock bag and put it in her relative’s mailbox up the street. Her cousin Mark took one of the seedballs out and started eating it…. thinking it was a “Christmas Ball Cookie!”

Mark hated to hurt the feelings of whoever made the cookies, but he felt that even for O.B. the cookie was a bit too earthy, gritty and seedy, and definitely needed more sugar!

Luckily, Mark is still alive, and we all had a good laugh over the incident!

A grassy yard at the foot of Coronado Avenue has a bunch of gnomes playing what looks to be something like Over-the-Line. The memory of the seedball fiasco makes me chuckle whenever I walk pass the Gnomes.



{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Douglas Blackwood January 26, 2022 at 7:15 pm

Mahalo Kathy! let it grow, let it grow. let it grow (“let it snow)


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