Cemetery Voodoo

I appeared in front of the Russian River Cemetery District Board of Directors last week at their monthly meeting. I was ushered in to what must be their chapel. They had set up a table in front where all of the board members sat, and then a crosswise table at each end. One end was […]

Purity No More

I was transferred back to the North Coast in 1965 by Ortho Chemical Company who I had worked for five years. I started with Ortho on the day my first of three daughters were born, June 1, 1960. My first job was in Ukiah running an agricultural chemical warehouse. I quickly was promoted to outside […]

Cemetery Do-Do

I will probably not live forever, so it is time to make some plans for my passing. Last month I called Eversole Mortuary and inquired about a nice headstone to be placed in my Grandfather’s cemetery plot at the Ukiah Cemetery. I know there is one space left in this plot and it is for […]

My Visit to the DWR

With so much water this year, you probably think the state wouldn’t care about water for the coming growing season. Well, I am one of the lucky ones who got a stinging letter from the Department of Water Resources (DWR) to wit: we have discovered dam sites impounding water on your property, and you are […]

The Mendocino Bargain

In my short life I have observed Mendocino County give away some great assets. In looking back, I can find no one who can justify just what was the thinking of our great leaders in the past years. The most talked about great give-away was Lake Mendocino. I recently attended the showing of the movie, […]

Alligare Sprays, Dempel Pays

Nothing is closer to me than my grapes. I live and breathe each and every vine. So when I traveled down the Pinot Noir rows and observed damage I was immediately concerned. In no time I inspected damaged leaves and stems. They were not growing properly. Something was dreadfully wrong. The leaves were misshapen, the […]

Garlic Gone Baby

Several years ago we rented a farm house to a couple new to the area. Ironically the man’s father-in-law had just purchased our property in Hopland, making it possible for us to purchase the small acreage plus the house in Healdsburg. We planted the small property into grapes. The tenant had a boat stored in […]

Horrible Harvests

The Savings Bank of Mendocino County published Rainfall amounts on a small card several years ago. I look at this card often due to a long rainy winter this year. The total amounts are high but I cannot remember having so much rain so late in the year. This becomes a problem for grape growers. […]

The Last Campbell

Just south of Healdsburg on the east side of Highway 101 was the Campbell Ranch. Almost every resident of Healdsburg and many on the North Coast knew the ranch with the friendly two-story house sitting up on a slight knoll. Today the house is surrounded by grapevines. A “For Sale” sign has been removed, leading […]

Vina Revisited

My late friend Ernest Peninou wrote four books on vineyards and wineries in California. I met Ernie in 1977 when he co-owned a grapevine nursery in Winters. Grape vines were in short supply and my usual supplier Jim Lider, owner of Casa Verdi Nursery was sold out. Lider suggested I contact Ernie Peninou. His Nursery […]

Who Poisoned My Grapes? (Part 4)

I waited 16 months for Sonoma County to issue their report on the spraying of my grapevines. I did not get a call as promised, but at a social occasion I happened to learn that the report had been finalized and released. I could make an appointment and come by the Commissioner’s office and pick […]

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