The Gardens of Mezzacello From a Raccoon’s Point of View

I am always curious about what I don’t know or can’t see. I am always looking down at Mezzacello from my office window, or the window on the landing of the steps that lead down into the kitchen. Both of those windows face south and offer their own – limited – view of the garden ecosystems of Mezzacello. I have also been using a drone in my #UrbanAgTech summer camps so I have some great footage of what the birds, the bees and the bats see. Well, we have a raccoon issue in out attic. So today I got to see what the raccoons on my roof see.

I found their nest and their entry point. I blocked up the hole they chewed in the flashing of the northeast corner of the house. They are persistent little buggers. But while I was up there (and in there as I was in the back attic) I decided I should take some late summer photos of Mezzacello. So here is a little gallery of Mezzacello in 2021. There is an upcoming blog post on evicting unwanted raccoon tenants, just wait for it.

Mezzacello in August, 2021

Jim Bruner | Mezzacello The formal gardens and the allee of Mezzacello. You can just see the pergola, the medicinal herb parterre and the pond to the right.
Jim Bruner | Mezzacello The allee to the left, the parterre herb gardens and pond in the middle, and the potager garden and the livestock sheds to the right.
Jim Bruner | Mezzacello A western edge view of the parterre herb beds and the pergola, the service yard, greenhouse and classroom at the northwest corner, and the potager gardens with the livestock shed and the service shed. Sadly, this is the last year for the fruit trees on the western edge of the property.

A lot has changed over the past six years. All of the ecosystems are really buzzing right now. I have a bit of weeding to do in the potager, and I have to complete the hanging/drying structure in the middle of the potager. But the livestock are thriving and the systems I designed there are super easy to maintain and process. My big failure is the fruit tree espalier on the western edge of the farm. I was not judicious enough in my pruning – that’s on me – and I never really got any fruit. The squirrels and birds are way more industrious than I am. The trees will be felled and used to create new hugelkultur beds, and the core wood will be donated to a wood turner so he can create beautiful art from my experiment. That is the essence of sustainability.

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