Posted by: Jack | May 31, 2007

Follow Up: Balcony Lawn

A short time ago I decided that our apartment’s lack of a yard or lawn was unsatisfactory and therefore installed one our balcony. After enduring some back-n-forth battles with the local avian population, the grass has sprung up in force.

Unmaintained, the grass quickly gets out of control but thankfully mowing this lawn takes a mere two minutes with a human-powered household scissors.

In other recent events, Anna and I spent the weekend with Jen, Anil and friends in Portland, Hood River and out at Dooterland. Heading down Friday afternoon, Anna and I enjoyed a round of disc golf at Pier Park on the West side of Portland before joining Jen and Anil at their home. A short walk down Alberta St. later that evening rewarded everyone with ice cream from a local shop.

Saturday morning the four of us grabbed a very large and satisfying breakfast at Fresh Pot (I think) and picked up some fruit for the weekend at a produce shop with amazing prices. Losing Anil but joined by Jenny and Evan we departed Portland, making the short trip to a trailhead which led us to a portion of the Pacific Coast Trail. After about two hours of gradual ascent we reached a vista offering an expansive view of the Columbia River Gorge and took a break for some lunch. Making a quick descent, we continued on to Dooterland where we reunited with Anil who had been hard at work on one of their many on-going projects. Enjoying a relaxing dinner from the grill, we were joined by yet more friends of Jen and Anil. As the night wore on we migrated to the fire pit and indulged in s’mores. While most retired to the yurt for the night, Anna and I had our first opportunity to test out our new tent. As expected, it performed excellently.

Fighting forceful cold winds the next morning, our large group made quick work of watering and mulching the young trees planted around the perimeter of the land last year. The afternoon and evening were then spent down in Hood River enjoying the fruits of the local breweries and restaurants. Returning to Dooterland, we again crowded around a fire underneath a moonlit sky. Just before turning in I took a few photos in the moonlight with some decent results.

This first photo is of the yurt, illuminated internally by a headlamp or two and externally by the nearly full moon. Given their darkness, both of these photos look better in a larger format. Click each to see it.

Pictured below is our new tent in action. This picture has been brightened a bit and the colors enhanced. The extremely bright point of light is Venus.

Monday was Anna’s birthday and we started off the day using her newly received Press-Bot French Press. It works just like any other french press except that it utilizes a Nalgene bottle as the brew pot so it’s extremely convenient for backpackers such as ourselves. Packing up we hit the road for Portland and upon arrival began touring various neighborhoods in hopes of getting an idea of where we may want to live in the event that we decide to move to Portland. Mid-afternoon, as we grew weary of the endless driving, we called it a weekend and made our way North to Olympia.



  1. That balcony lawn is possibly the best thing I’ve seen in an age! 8)

    Wish I’d thought of it when I was in my [i]last[/i] flat 🙂

  2. Great photos, as always. You should consider planting wheatgrass — it grows very thick, dark green grass and if you get a juicer you can drink it after you cut it (hard red spring wheat berries are the best tasting).

  3. glad you got to use your press-bot, and thanks for blogging about it!


  4. what a beautiful picture

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