Signs Of Spring Are Showing


I would say it can’t get here soon enough but a quick tour of the back and side yards has shown me that there is a metric SHIT TON of back breaking work that needs to be done around here.

Holy Shit I’m not even kidding.

Dead tree branches EVERYWHERE.

Freaking moss growing on everything, AT LEAST another truck load of dead leaves and I haven’t even looked real hard at the weeds.

I don’t want to because it’s a race to see which one takes over completely, the moss or the weeds.

The back deck looks like a living organism.

In case you think I’m exaggerating, I just had The Kid help me drag the patio furniture, BBQ and other shit off of it so I can start in.

I’m going to have to sweep the big stuff off, pressure wash the shit out of it and put some kind of preservative on it.

A little update,

Oof. It was way worse than I thought, especially over in that far corner.

The moss was horrible.

It took me 3 1/2 hours to do the whole thing.

I gotta say though, that little Horror Fright pressure washer is worth every penny. It’s like the Energizer Bunny. I have used the shit out of it, friends and relatives have also used the shit out of it over the last 3 years. The one legit bitch I have bout it is the pressure hose is a POS, too short, Hard plastic with Push On fittings thing, it tends to kink when it gets wound up and once it’s kinked it stays that way.

That and they didn’t put any way to attach the spray gun when you put it away. Other than that it’s totally worth the $80 I spent on it.

Then there is the gate that fell over because the fence post rotted off at ground level.

Normally I would yell at the rental management outfit to have that fixed but I already see the kind of quality that results in and fuck that. I want a real gate there.

They dig a hole, drop a little 4X4 in it, fill it with concrete and then hang some flimsy collection of nails and questionable boards off of the cheapest hinges they can dig out of the bargain bin. Looks great from thirty feet away and drags on the ground, won’t close right and starts falling apart before they get their tools packed up.

First I’m going to have to dig around and yank the old concrete and broken off post out and OF COURSE it’s right fucking next to the outside wall of the garage and just for added bonus points, the utilities go right through there in the middle underneath.

I’m going to have to have a Locate service come mark everything so I don’t wind up with a nasty surprise.

Then I’m either going to bolt four 4X4’s together or try and find a Rail Road Tie to hang a gate that a full grown man can hang off of. It’s half of the full gate and the other side looks like a prop out of a horror movie but it hasn’t fallen down yet.

All this on top of the ten thousand other things I have to do.

The front yard is only marginally better but at least there aren’t dead tree branches everywhere. Just under those damn Magnolia trees.

The moss didn’t miss a trick though, nor the weeds.

Last year I used four gallons of weed killer, at $30 a gallon and it didn’t touch them. This year, Daddy is done fucking around.

Bring on the Flammenwurfer bitches.

That’s right kiddies, Daddy is going full on Scorched Earth on those fucking weeds.

I’m gonna strap the tank to a hand cart and go to fucking town.

The whole back yard is basically gravel with grass and weeds covering it and the front yard on both sides has huge swaths of river rock that the weeds grow up through.

They gonna be crispy critters this time.

The Wifely Unit is going to shit little golden apples when I drag that baby out.


Sometimes it’s good to be a man.

I’m going to especially enjoy those particular sandwiches.

26 thoughts on “Signs Of Spring Are Showing

  1. That propane torch is gonna bring out the neighbors too cuz it sounds like a jet engine at full throttle when you turn it up high… experience. It should work and it is satisfying to see weeds curl up and blacken, kinda like human crispy critters… saw that in Kosovo.


  2. I use the torch as well on all my gravel driveway areas. You don’t even have to burn it until it’s all ash, just enough to singe it.

    Regarding the deck treatment, I’ve also tried everything out there(I live in Oregon), and the suff I have found that works really well is call “Deck Correct”. It’s more of a thick paint rather than a stain, but after you apply it, you can ignore the deck for a few years…


  3. Coupla tips learned the hard way. Be damn careful using a pressure washer on old wood decking. Stuff is too soft and it’ll etch it deep if not cut clear through it. If you’re careful to keep the jet a few inches from the wood though, it is a lot faster than any brush.
    For preservative, I’m an old fashioned fan of linseed oil. Needs to be applied in hot weather though. Do it this time of year, and it doesn’t cure, it just gets sticky and ugly. I use Thompsons water seal, but be sure not to fall for the “water soluble formulas” That is pure junk. You want the real, cleanup with paint thinner deal. I try to use a cheap or old paintbrush or roller, and just throw it away when I’m done.


    • I had a deck replaced on a house I have in Wisconsin about 25 years ago. I had a local contractor build it and I told him to seal it with Thompsons. He started pissin and moanin about Thompson Water Seal and told me about “what he uses”.
      50/50 mix of gum turpentine and Linseed oil. Guy swore by it.
      I finally said what the hell and OK’d it.
      It cost about 3 times what the Thompsons would have cost but that deck still beads up like oil cloth every time it rains.
      Made a believer out of me.


      • I will look into that mix. There is a whole category of paint chemistry called drying oils. They cure by reacting with oxygen to crosslink and polymerize. When they soak into the wood surface and then cure, they essentially form a plastic surface, and it takes warm weather to move that process along. A lot of those old time processes are still better than newer paint chemistry. Whitewash is another one (too poor to paint, too proud to whitewash), as the lime is extremely alkaline and therefore pest repellent.


  4. Phil & readers, if you do go the liquid weedkiller route, there is a safer non-toxic way then enriching Bayer’s bank balance. Simply mix 5 litres of the cheapest bulk-buy vinegar you can find, with at least a full cup of salt, making sure that it is fully dissolved in solution. Spray it onto the foliage early in the day if possible. Of course, if you use this too often, you run the real risk of ‘salting the earth’, and nothing will grow until the salt leaches away. Take the usual precaution against overspray or drift onto good plants that you want to save. When you’re finished, but still have unused (make sure it is untainted!) solution, just sprinkle it on your hot chips or salad! You can wash yourself with it, and cure poultry and pets of flea infestation (shield their eyes but), you can’t do that with any bastard MonSATANto herbicide.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. We’re getting ready for a big Spring snow here. NWS hasn’t even called for an amount yet, other than threes days of “heavy” snow. I don’t like the snow here this time of year. It’s wet and heavy and a PITA to shovel.


    • My buddy at work said they were calling for EIGHTY INCHES OF SNOW in Colorado yesterday.
      Buddy, hasten thyself to the store and stock the hell up on EVERYTHING!!


      • We’re pretty well stocked on things, but we’re going out tomorrow to get some things, like rawhide chews for the dog. She gets really upset when she doesn’t get a chew in the morning, worse than me before I have my coffee!

        Oh, yeah…..gotta get coffee, too!


  6. FWIW – I use a product called Ground Clear which kills anything and everything on areas like gravel or walkways, etc where nothing should be growing. Takes a few days to see results but effects last longer than say Roundup.

    Since I hate weeding with a passion and we get the weed invasion from outer space here every spring, I use Weed Impede (Surflan) for use anywhere close to existing plants. It’s a pre-emergent that stops seeds from germinating. Stuff works, put it on every 3 months. March to November here in Cincinnati. And again, ground clear where I’m not worried about other plants getting whacked.

    The stuff works well for small trees growing in close to other plants so hard to dig out. I cut close to ground, drill hole down center of trunk and pour some right into the remaining tree stump. Kills it dead to the roots and leaves the surrounding plants alone.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I stayed a whole week there in Cincinnati one afternoon… kidme, I thought you had more sense to you then being a “Cincinnatain” I guess someone has to be from there.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Born in Pittsburgh, moved to Phoenix Az area in 1979, job got me to Cincy in 2000. Getting ready to move in a few years and kiss this place goodbye.


          • That could be on the Irish. Never did get straight answers on the ancestry and not worried about it either. I’ve heard French, German, Polish, and Cherokee from various family people over the years. Bat Masterson is supposed to be an uncle to some degree.
            I’ve heard of Canonsburg. Pittsburgh is a big place with all the associated burbs. Fun place to grow up in. Thanks for the compliment.


  7. Thanks to that Aussie bitch with chemophobia, anything that actually
    works is now verboten. There are no effective alternatives to Asbestos,
    DDT, PCBs, CFCs, chemical weed killers, etc. I grew up with chemical
    hot tanks, safety solvents, carb cleaners, etc. In my last two gigs in
    paper mills, they used agitated hot soapy water. I told my bosses
    that we might as well whip out our dicks and piss on them or all the
    good they did!

    Rachel Carson never heard the word Hormesis.


  8. Price you pay for living in a temperate jungle, man. I feel your pain.

    Years too late, but if’n putting rocks and gravel down was the plan, what not lay some nuclear-proof weedblock down first, underneath that, then lay and spread the cover on top, and never deal with the little shoots ever again?
    Just wondering.

    I’m guessing the “million pending projects, and only 168 hours in a week” may have had something to do with it.


  9. For outside deck wood, I use burnt motor oil and off road diesel. I call it my three in one redneck treat all. Not only does the water bead up better than when using Thompson’s or similar, but I don’t have any wasps or weeds growing underneath my deck. My deck is app. 14′ X 64′ (on avg. it is different sizes in places by design). By the way is thirty years old this spring and I have only had to replace a few “knotty” boards and top handrails.


  10. A word to the wise (And I hesitate because I know the after work post would be hilarious otherwise)

    When you do the post, waddle down to home despot and rent an electric jack hammer for the old concrete.

    I replaced two fenceposts on my neighbors fence because he couldn’t be bothered that the thing was about to fall into my yard. Turns out, there was a chain link fence there previously and they simply installed the new post next to the old one. Two times the concrete to deal with. I nearly broke my ass beating with a sledge and a digging bar and pulling.

    Best $40 I ever spent. The thing burned through the old concrete like butter leaving easily handled chunks.

    If that rental company is like you say, there’s sure to be evil lurking under the ground where the fence post rotted.

    BTW, you should consider a metal post if it’s that damp.


  11. Don’t double the 4bys, moisture will capillary between and rot out faster than Cumala’s Crevasse. Go get a Yella wood 6by, a concrete form sleeve to put it in and put the kid to work digging the hole. Have fun, be careful of the linseed oil rags, they will spontaneously combust. Burn them in a safe place.



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