Liz Writes Life 7-28-15

July 28, 2015
Liz Writes Life

Tonight
There may be a whole new way to look at water and obtaining it – from deep inside the earth. An unusual discussion will be held tonight at the Yreka Tea Party Patriots meeting, which starts at 6:30 p.m. and is held at Covenant Chapel Church, 200 Greenhorn Rd. in Yreka. It is free.
The speaker is a local resident, Pal Pauer, who is an authority on what is called “primary water” and how to obtain it. Pauer is an expert hydrologist and geologist and has dowsed, found and helped drill for primary water from the Yreka area to Kenya in Africa. He has been involved in drilling 100s of wells that are providing significant amount of water.
Pauer speculates that the incredible new flow of water in creeks in Solano County, CA. after the Sept. 26, 2014 earthquake resulted from shifts in the earth’s geology that now allows a deeper groundwater to make it to the surface. Pauer’s information should be very enlightening.
More Water
Scott Valley Protect Our Water will meet this Thursday, July 30, 2015 at the Fort Jones Community Center. Time is 7 p.m. Please bring a dessert to share as we eat before, during and after. Siskiyou County Dist. 5 Supervisor Ray Haupt will be speaking on a number of county issues. Rich Marshall, president of the Siskiyou Water Users Assoc. is also planning on speaking.
Last month, Klamath Co. Commissioner and Chairman of the Board, Tom Mallams, told POW about the 44 agricultural wells in the Upper Klamath that the State of Oregon had ordered to be shut-down. This order included Mallam’s well. There should be an update on this situation.
Dancin’
There will be food, drink and “Rockin’ the Rec” fun on Friday, July 31 from 8 to 11 p.m. Live bands “River Rock” and “The ‘B’ Side” will be playing, so bring your dancing shoes. Doors open at 5 p.m. with pizza and drinks at 11236 N. Hwy 3 in Fort Jones. Admission is $10 at the door.
Garden
I keep forgetting to mention that the watermelons are past softball size and cantaloupe have set on. Yay! We have finally eaten a few ripe tomatoes with great expectation of lots more.
After I complained last week about my cabbage seeds that did not germinate, Peggy Heide from the Yreka Community Garden called and said she had some younger cabbage plants that I could plant. So I stopped by the Yreka Community Garden and was truly impressed with all the garden blocks that local residents are utilizing; and the perennials that are in pots and will be sold during the fall sale.
Peggy sent me home with flathead cabbages, broccoli, kale and several varieties of onions. I also purchased a tall, blooming black-eyed Susan plant. I put them under the pine tree planning on transplanting, but ended-up busy for several days. Then one afternoon I went out to turn on an irrigation timer and a doe was lying under the pine tree. Ugh. I got her out, without her tearing up the fence, but quickly learned that she enjoyed several cabbages, the broccoli and kale along with my blooming lavender phlox and some amaranthus leaves. Gee whiz, I felt stupid, but the deer haven’t been around much lately, so I let my guard down. I’ve also been told that a mountain lion has been spotted running across the road by our house – once at 3:45 in the a.m. and just last week at 9:30 a.m.
Anyway, I was able to save and transplant several cabbages and I planted the onions on Saturday. Also gave Peggy a call and told her the sad news.
Yurok
I was a bit surprised that the Yurok Tribal leadership recently encouraged a raid of over 55,000 large marijuana plants claiming it is illegal to grow marijuana on the Yurok Reservation and the irrigation water is needed in the Klamath River for salmon.
Here is their press release: “This year’s “Operation Yurok” resulted in the eradication of approximately 55,000 marijuana plants. Large-scale cannabis cultivation, on and near the Yurok Reservation, is responsible for robbing millions of gallons of cold water from several tributaries that feed the Klamath River. The main purpose of the two-week, collaborative operation was to return as much water as possible to the Klamath and the Tribe’s community water systems, which are located downstream of many of the illegal pot plantations. Large quantities of chemical fertilizers, as well as illegal grading and trash dumping, were a common visage at the environmentally destructive grow sites.”
“Currently, the Klamath River is suffering from salmon-stressing, warm temperatures and low flows. Earlier this week, the Yurok Fisheries Program found adult Chinook salmon infected with Ichthyophthirius multifiliis (Ich), the same deadly disease responsible for the 2002 fish kill. The pathogen thrives in warm, slow flowing water.”
Yep, kinda leaves you hanging alluding to other possibilities …
Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.
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Liz Writes Life 7-21-15

July 21, 2015
Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, CA

Apparently someone supporting the expansion of the JH Guest Ranch has been taking “Stop JH Expansion” signs. More than 25 signs have been taken off of private property during the past several weeks. This is alarming to a number of local folks.
Michael Stapleton from the Friends of French Creek, which opposes the expansion of JH, reported to the Siskiyou Co. Board of Supervisors that the signs were removed without any property owners’ agreement. He spoke with Sheriff Jon Lopey, who considers this “misdemeanor theft.” Michael said the sheriff would like to catch the thieves and is looking into the matter.
It is not a code violation to have the “Stop JH Expansion” signs on private property in Siskiyou County as the signs are actually protected under “freedom of speech.” The only private signs under any regulations are election campaign signs, which can only be up for a few months before an election.
Actually, it looks like the thieves have created a huge backlash as Michael told me the property owners want new signs put up and more local folks have called him wanting signs.
Once again, the problem is not with the original permit of 387 guests utilizing the JH camping program nor the type of business it is.
The problem lies with JH expanding their programs and number of guests, for years, (violating their permit) and now trying to obtain a permit for twice the 387 amount of people. This violates the 1980-designed Scott Valley Plan.
The county has not compromised and an expanded permit has not been granted to JH, which is contrary to what has been said by officials of JH.
Michael told me that if JH stayed within their 387 people permit there wouldn’t be a problem.
One major concern is the huge expansion of private cars caravanning down Scott Valley roads, (40 to 50 at a time) instead of the buses that were used originally to bring in the teenaged campers.
A look on the JH website shows their program has changed and the teen guests are now the minority and couple or adult programs now comprise about 70 percent of the guests; and it looks like most drive cars to JH camping destinations, which also includes the Scott River Lodge down in the Scott River canyon. This increased traffic does create an impact on roads, neighbors and affect safety issues.
Rodeo
The Old Time Rodeo will be this Saturday night, July 25th at the Pleasure Park Rodeo grounds outside of Etna. Kids events of Mutton Bustin’ and Calf Riding kick-off the rodeo at 4 p.m. Dance-in-the-dirt follows at the concession stand area.
Mt. Bolivar Grange is also holding a dance Saturday night in Callahan. So there is plenty to do, but please do not drink and drive as the local law enforcement officers will be out in force.
Scott Valley Protect Our Water will meet on Thurs. July 30th at the Fort Jones Community Center. Time is 7 p.m.
Garden
Like many other folks I am hearing from, the zucchini is producing full-bore and is now a pest. Our corn is tall and putting on tassels; and Jack staked up the green beans. Heard from my friends, Clint and Sophie McBroom, and they are picking and eating fresh green beans already — and ripe tomatoes. Sophie planted “Early Girl” this year. So did I, but after the varmint ate our first ripe tomato two weeks ago, we haven’t had any more ripen. Guess their top-of-the-hill garden has just the right temps.
The cucumbers plants put on a lot of blooms and by Thursday I decided to see how many smaller cucs there were for dill pickles. Gee whiz, I ended up making seven quarts! And I think it was the first time I totally guessed right as all the cucs fit into seven jars. I pealed a bunch of my garlic putting two cloves in each jar and picked just the right amount of fresh dill from the garden. I didn’t even have much more than a half-cup of the vinegar-water brine left over. It was really nice to have it all match up.
On Saturday, I picked seven more eatable cucs.
The baby parsley and basils that I planted last week are still alive and I gave them a shot of Miracle Grow. Candy Cook-Slette told me that she used fish emulsion fertilizer on her basils and they have grown into bushes! I’ve heard that plants really like the fish emulsion.
I can’t find any of the onions growing that I planted from seed two weeks ago, but there are lots of tiny weeds. Guess I will have to be patient. Hopefully, the seeds will germinate.
The gladiolus started blooming with the deep burgundy first and now the lavender and apricot. Lavender phlox, bright yellow yarrow, cone flower and purple bull thistles are also adding color. My tall Shasta daisies are still going strong.
Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.
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Liz Writes Life 7-14-15

July 14, 2015
Liz Writes Life

Oh, this cooler weather and rain has been wonderful. Sure do hope the lightning strikes are followed by downpours to put out fires. I’ve been receiving updates from the Klamath National Forest and it sounds like they are trying to jump on any smoke that is found. They did report several dozen smokes and even some left-overs from last year’s fires. Yep, we are praying we don’t have fires like last year. And thank you to everyone who has been praying for rain and cooler temps. It worked!
My husband, Jack, didn’t have to irrigate the garden for several days, because of several mornings of drizzle. It is always a bit disconcerting when you get off your schedule of watering as it is easy to get behind, which I did a bit in watering my flowers. One dahlia is blooming and the volunteer four o’ clocks are taller than the zinnias. The red rose bloomed a second time and the yarrow is bright yellow.
With the weather being so cool, I decided it was the perfect time to plant the one-inch tall basils and the one parsley that did sprout in peat pots. None of the cabbage seeds came up in them and no cabbage grew, where I planted them outside. Guess I need to do some research on growing cabbage from seeds. The basil is planted where the cabbage didn’t come up and I pulled up the last cauliflower plant. There is enough room there to plant some lettuce seeds later this month. I decided to plant the “Sweet Spanish onion Utah strain” seeds where I pulled the garlic. Sure do hope that a significant amount come up for fall and winter onions.
Lost several small cherry (almost ripe) tomatoes to the varmint that ate our first ripe tomato. Hum, we are trying to figure out what to do, yet hoping it will just get tired of ripe tomatoes!
Water
Scott Valley Protect Our Water will hold its next meeting on Thurs. July 30 at the Fort Jones Community Center. Time is 7 p.m.
Last month, Siskiyou Co. Supervisor Ray Haupt told us the county is five years into fighting a lawsuit brought by Environmental Law Foundation regarding groundwater. ELF claims the county has “failed” to manage groundwater in Scott Valley, but California water law does not dictate that counties regulate groundwater. Siskiyou County doesn’t want to control what property owners do with their well water, because it will bring in environmental regulations and permit costs to drill a well.
Ray also told us that ELF wants to put all water under the label of “public trust”, which will truly affect and change our current California Water Law putting the State of California in a much more powerful position to control all water throughout the state.
ELF wants to demand that in order for property owners to drill a well, they must first obtain and pass the California Environmental Quality Act. Maybe sounds harmless, but the cost of doing a CEQA is over $20,000 – mostly for fees and environmental studies. So, the cost to drill a well for a home would go up by at least $20,000 for the CEQA.
I talked with Siskiyou County Counsel, Brian Morris, and he said the county just filed a “petition for a writ of mandate” last week in the 3rd Dist. Court of Appeals. Both Ray and Brian have said Siskiyou must prevail against ELF in their lawsuit, because a loss will affect all the other counties in the state. “The battle continues,” said Brian.
Forestry
Ray Haupt has been working with the House (congress) Natural Resources Committee in writing regulation to improve management of the federally-managed forests. He also participates on a wildfire committee that is trying to thin the forests to reduce the hot fires that are destroying the environment. So he was pleased when the “Resilient Federal Forests Act of 2015, called H.R. 2647, passed the House with 243 votes from Republicans and 19 from Democrats. Now the bill goes to the U.S. Senate for vote and that is worry-some, but at least the House agreed on a bill to improve the forests.
Several of the important parts in this bill include: Repeal of the ban on harvesting trees over 21-inches under the Eastside screens; Repeal of the “Survey and Manage” provisions of the North West Forest Plan; and Direction to BLM to develop a new alternative for their Western Oregon management plans to meet the O & C Act (Oregon and California Railroad Revested Lands Act) requirements for sustained yield forestry.
The 1994 Northwest Forest Plan provided for a certain amount to trees to be harvested and that requirement has never been met, so our national forests are now terribly overgrown in need of thinning and an active healthy management style.
Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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Liz Writes Life 7-7-15

July 7, 2015

Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, CA

Etna Party

The Scott Valley Chamber of Commerce is hosting a “Jamming on Main Street” this Saturday, July 11th, from 6 to 10 p.m. in Etna. Yes, Main Street will be closed off for music; and vendors of crafts and food will set up.
There is even a theme – Pacific Crest Trail Reunion. Davie Martin said this encompasses hikers coming-in, those coming back to finish and those that liked it here and just wanted to come back and say “Hi”. Davie added this is a great excuse for a party and the city is willing to close off the Main business block.

At 6 p.m., the Siskiyou County Homewreckers will kick off the fun with live music. The local belly dancers will show-off their stuff at 7:15 p.m. and I-Dance group will perform at 7:30ish. A watermelon eating contest will follow and then another set of music from the Homewreckers. The Pyro dancers may close out the evening. Sounds like a great time.

I remember back in the 50s, when the “Teen Center” held dances on Saturday nights up in the dance hall above City Hall. Sometimes, the teens talked (our grandfather) Etna Town Marshal, George “Dad” Dillman (and city council) into letting them throw hay bales out on Main Street, close it off, and dance or sock-hop the night away. At least that is what I recall as a real little kid! I was (as my brother put it) “too little and couldn’t go,” but my older sister was one of the organizers. So I remember it being a “big deal” and loads of fun. I asked her if they had live bands and she doesn’t think they did, so they probably danced to 78 records – maybe 45s, we don’t remember when the 45s came along. Do any of you?

Thank you to the Scott Valley Chamber for reviving an old-fashioned good time.

My sister and her husband, Lorena and David Norris, are returning next weekend for the Etna High School Reunion. Lorena graduated in 1960 and David in 1955, so they will actually be going to separate parties on Friday night. Saturday is a day of eating and socializing at City Park and all EHS grads are invited. Guess, I better stop in during the afternoon for a visit. Jess Bigham just emailed that he and his wife are driving down from Idaho!

2nd Amendment

The Siskiyou County Republican Central Committee is sponsoring a 2nd Amendment Saturday Fun Shoot on Sat. July 18 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. It will be held at the Dunsmuir Rod and Gun Club over by the Dunsmuir airport by I-5. Rifle, handgun and youth ranges will be open for shooting.

Dave and Kathy Tyler are roasting two pigs for the barbecue at 2 p.m.
Siskiyou Sheriff Jon Lopey and other law enforcement agencies will share expertise, including a SWAT Team. President of the California Gun Owners Assoc. Sam Paredes will be there and give an update on the state of the 2nd Amendment in California.

This is a fundraiser, so call Dan Dorsey at 926-2528 or Kathy Bergeron at 842-4400 for tickets: $15 for adults, $10 for ages 10-13 and free for 9 and under.

Rodeo

The Old-Time Rodeo sponsored by the Pleasure Park will be held on Sat. July 25 with kids events of Mutton Bustin’ and Calf Riding starting at 4 p.m. and the Rodeo at 5 p.m. To enter events, call Jaclyn Boyce this Saturday and Sunday, July 11-12 between 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Call 530-340-5527.

Garden

Last week’s heat got the lettuce and it became tough and bitter, so it is getting turned into mulch, in that spot, and I plan on planting carrots there for a fall crop. My husband just announced that something ate our first tomato that was almost ripe. There is a tiny bit left on the ground. Ugh! Can’t find any deer tracks. Maybe it was a raccoon, but it would have had to scale the fence and go through the white baling twine strands on top. Actually that is not much of a deterrent for a raccoon. Anyway, bummer!

Thank you to Vonita Bishop, who gave me several ripe tomatoes and a pint of fresh-picked raspberries last week. Yum! Oh, the giant Shasta daisies are blooming. Yay.

POW

At the Scott Valley Protect Our Water meeting last month, Siskiyou Water Users’ President Richard Marshall asked if we had all received the newest notice from Pacific Power stating we will likely receive another surcharge increase. We are already paying one for the potential removal of the Klamath dams that many of us are working to save. This surcharge is to cover the Red Butte Transmission Project. You would think they should have enough profits to pay for their own improvements, instead of adding the cost to us customers. Frustrating.

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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Liz Writes Life 6-30-15

June 30, 3015
Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, CA

Congressman Doug LaMalfa is holding a Town Hall meeting tomorrow evening in Weed at 6 p.m. It will be held at the City Hall at 500 Main Street. He toured the terrible Boles Fire last September and likely hopes to see the rebuilding that is going on and address the fire and other issues plaguing the North State. Congressman LaMalfa works hard to stay in contact with the many constituents and communities in his district. Please attend, if possible.
Garden
I pulled the rest of the garlic and laid it under the pine tree to dry with the first batch. The oregano was ready to harvest and I did so in three different batches putting each batch of fresh oregano on stems in a pillow case, which was then put to dry in the back seat of my car and even rolled down the windows part way to let some of the heat out. They dried in about three days.
My husband picked the nice cauliflower and boy was it tasty, especially after smothering it with a mayo-mustard cheddar cheese sauce! The lettuce is getting tough, but is still surviving this heat. And the corn, well the old-timers said that corn should be knee-high by the Fourth of July, and ours is past my rear-end – no short-people comments! Yep, this warm spring and now very hot summer is making the garden grow.
Two friends bragged about having ripe tomatoes for nearly a month. Roy Hammer uses a green house and Vonita Bishop said she put her tomatoes in at least a month sooner than normal and uses the wall-o-waters to protect them from cold nights. I have not had good luck with the wall-o-waters, but really should try using them again.
Roy mentioned that the Fort Jones Farmer’s Market will open on July 7th at the Babe Ruth Baseball Field. Be there on time at 5:30 p.m. to get first pick.
POW
The Etna Farmer’s Market was in full-swing at Dotty’s last Thursday night, when I drove by on my way to the Scott Valley Protect Our Water meeting. Yep, it was hot, but there were checking it out.
We had a good turnout at our POW meeting including field reps from Assemblyman Brian Dahle’s office, Bruce Ross; and Erin Ryan from Congressman LaMalfa. Our Dist. 5 Siskiyou Co. Supervisor Ray Haupt also spoke and the Chairman of the Klamath County Commissioners, Tom Mallams, even drove over three hours to attend and speak about the drastic water issues affecting farmers in the Klamath Project and the Upper Klamath ranchers.
President Mike Adams said the CA. Dept. of Fish and Wildlife (also known as DFG) appealed San Bernardino Judge Ochoa’s decision that allowed suction dredge miners back into the river and won. So DFG is not backing down and has actually cited a number of the small dredge miners here in Siskiyou County.
Mark Baird explained the June 10th support (and situation) that helped several Scott Valley ranchers move some river gravel to protect their legal property right of water flowing into the Farmer’s Ditch. The diversion point on Scott River was destroyed in the January high-water and the ranchers had been trying for months to obtain a 1600 permit that would have allowed them to get in the river and fix their ditch and diversion point. The CA. Dept. of Fish and Wildlife (DFG) has drug its feet and not issued the permit within its own allotted time schedule. This is what many state and federal agencies are doing. Remember that justice delayed is justice denied.
Currently, meetings are being held on the situation. Siskiyou Co. Sheriff Jon Lopey told me that he went out last week to actually see the small amount of work was done to obtain the legal water. I sure hope this can be settled in an affable manner.
Klamath County Commissioner Tom Mallams said the water issues in the Klamath Project and Upper Klamath area are extremely contentious and have divided communities and friends. There has been significant amount of threats leading to the equivalent of blackmail to get ranchers and farmers to agree to the KBRA (Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement) and two other agreements — with the promise of water. Now those promises are being broken as more and more water curtailments are occurring. Mallams said that notices just went out from the State of Oregon demanding 44 agricultural wells in the Upper Klamath be shut off by the property owners. One of those notices is for his well and he said that he will not comply. I know Tom, personally, and will keep you all updated on this situation.
This POW meeting went for three hours, our longest yet, so I will share more info from it in next week’s column. Stay tuned.
Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.
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Liz Writes Life 6-25-15

June 23, 2015
Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, Siskiyou, California

Scott Valley Protect Our Water will meet this Thursday, June 25, 2015 at the Fort Jones Community Center. Time is 7 p.m. There will be updates on water issues, both local and statewide, according to President Mike Adams. Mark Baird will discuss senior and junior water rights. Siskiyou County Supervisor Ray Haupt will explain how the spotted owl listing to the Endangered Species Act (nearly 30 years ago) has devastated Siskiyou communities and economies. Erin Ryan, from Congressman Doug LaMalfa’s office, will also share new information. Bring a dessert as we eat before, during and after.
The REC
On Friday night, June 26th, two bands will rock The REC from 8 to 11 p.m. The “B” Side will open for Stonewash and dancin’ will be expected. The REC is located at 11236 on N. Hwy 3 in Fort Jones. Admission is $10 per person and the doors open for socializing at 5 p.m.
Garden
Yep, my husband picked three zucchini Friday and I made a stovetop casserole. It needed fresh tomatoes and, of course, we didn’t have any. So I used a half-pint of Italian tomatoes that I canned in 2013. I fried chopped onion and sliced zucchini in organic canola oil added dried basil, parsley and oregano, then the herbed tomatoes and sliced Monterey Jack cheese on top. Put the lid on to let it melt together and served it with barbecue steak along with the last of my homemade sourdough bread that I toasted with butter and garlic salt.
The green beans are coming up. So I think I have found my problem – I’ve been planting them too deep. One plant did get the tops eaten off by something, but the others are strong and sturdy. At least four cantaloupes are up from the last planting, whew, the one plant that came up last month just won’t produce enough for us. Jack also picked a broccoli. The last cauliflower looks really good and will need to be picked soon too.
Pulled half the garlic and laid them out to dry under the pine tree. Some are nice size. I was hoping the 20 plants that I left in the ground would grow a bit more, but the tops are starting to turn yellow, so I think they are done growing and should pull them.
Two friends reported to me on their garden. Candy Cook-Slette grinned while telling me about the big cucumbers that she has been picking and Ann Ohlund touted eating a ripe Sweet 100 Cherry tomato — and I drooled. They admitted starting their plants in greenhouses several months ago, but it goes to show that we can produce fresh vegetables for a longer than just a Scott Valley summer season.
Got to say that my poor old mostly-ignored rose bushes are spouting gorgeous red and orange blooms. I’ve been irrigating my now wild and very natural flower garden and it is nice to have the color of orange day lilies, bright pink lamb’s ears, daisy-like fever few the early Shasta Daisies.
Saw mill
I am really excited about Fruit Growers Supply Company and the saw mill they are building on the outskirts of Yreka. This week, I was able to speak with John Ernst, the mill manager, and learned there are over 50 contractors helping to build the mill plus 24 employees hired through employment services or Fruit Growers.
John said they are gearing up for a slow and safe start of the mill in August and estimates there will be 44 full-time employees. The mill is a full-service operation with logs coming in and lumber going out.
John said that Fruit Growers recently did a study and found what is called “waste wood” could be utilized and processed into smaller-size lumber for pallets. This waste wood includes small diameter trees from their plantations, thinning from harvests and fire restoration; plus the tops of harvested trees. Fruit Growers believes there will be sufficient supply to keep the mill in operation using product from its own properties and product from adjacent properties — both public and private. Fruit Growers also owns an affiliated pallet manufacturing facility in Visalia, California that will utilize pallet-sized lumber produced at the Yreka saw mill.
Folks, this is really good news and will certainly help our local economy.
Terry Salvestro, timber lands manager for Fruit Growers in Hilt, told me that Fruit Growers is shipping close to half a million board feet per day off the 2014 Beaver Fire on the Klamath River. The company was able to obtain a Cal-Fire Emergency Notice that allows salvage of substantially damaged timber lands, while still meeting all the state regulations protecting the environment. They began harvesting the dead and damaged trees in September 2014 as soon as it was safely possible to do so. It is so great to see the logging trucks go by my house!
Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.
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Liz Writes Life 6-16-15

June 16, 2015

Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, Siskiyou, California

Two weeks ago, I was pretty frustrated. Not one of the green beans had popped up, so I carefully dug down several inches in the soil and actually found a bean. It was beginning to grow leaves and the roots were an inch long. I replanted it in hopes that there were lots more just like it about to spout up. After waiting 10 more days there were no signs of any beans coming up. So on Saturday, I planted another batch. Don’t know what the problem is, but I didn’t plant these as deep.

Could have picked the sugar peas sooner, but wasn’t paying attention. Thinned the cucumbers to 16 plants and they are really growing. My husband noticed that two zucchini set on and are growing so fast they may be ready to eat by this weekend. The garden plants really liked that hot weather last week, but I didn’t!

Thank you to Carol White for bringing me two cabbages. We have been making coleslaw and stir fry. It sure is good!

POW

Scott Valley Protect Our Water will hold its next meeting on Thursday, June 25th at the Fort Jones Community Center. Time is 7 p.m. Please bring a dessert, if you can, as we eat before, during and after to keep our strength up while talking politics!

To finish up my report on last month’s POW meeting, Richard Marshall discussed how the U.S. Department of Interior seems to be tactically working to single out groups and push for support of the dreaded KBRA – the Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement. Part of the problem is John Bezdek, an attorney for the DOI, has been meeting with county groups and organizations trying to get them on board with the KBRA. Apparently, the Modoc County Cattlemen’s Association and the Modoc County Supervisors approved support of the KBRA, which includes the destruction of the four hydro-electric Klamath dams.

Our Siskiyou County Supervisors have not been influenced to any of Bezdek’s demands and remains a strong force against the KBRA and Klamath dam removal.

George Webb also shared about the Sugar Pine Mine and its problems with the BLM – Bureau of Land Management. George said that things are at a standstill as the situation is working through its way through BLM’s internal Administrative process. Yep, that will take forever. The miners asked for a court hearing regarding their application for the decades-old mine and BLM is continuing to stall.

Good news

Folks wanting to sell at Farmer’s Markets here in Siskiyou County got a big boost by way of a reduction of a water-testing permit fee – all due to a few people that decided to fix things.

Local vendor Michelle Rush has been stewing about the newest permit fee, since a Cottage Food Operators law was passed at the state level two years ago regarding baked and canned goods that are made at home. Each county decides on the cost of the fee and Siskiyou’s Planning Dept. set the water-testing portion of the fee at $289.

Michelle says that many vendors don’t make much of a profit as it is and the additional Operators water-testing fee kept her out of the game last year. She couldn’t afford it.

After thinking on the situation, she decided to go to our newly-elected Dist. 5 County Supervisor, Ray Haupt, with her frustration. Michelle had learned that the significant part of her higher fee was to pay for testing of her well water. Vendors who live within city limits do not have to pay for testing of the water. Supervisor Haupt felt her concern was legitimate and went to the (newly-appointed) Planning Director Greg Plucker to discuss the issue. Michelle submitted a letter with statistics and facts showing how much lower the permit fees were in surrounding counties.

Director Plucker looked into the actual costs of water testing and deemed Siskiyou’s Cottage Food Operators Permit fee could and should be lowered. It is now only $50 for the outside-city-limits well-water-testing portion of the fee. The initial Permit fee is $45.

“I can live with a $95 fee,” said an elated Michelle, who sells garden vegetables, pies, jams and jellies during the short Farmer’s Market season in Scott Valley. Michelle hopes that more growers and artisan vendors will be able to afford the lowered fee and join the Farmer’s Market that is open from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. every Thursday at Dotty’s in Etna.

Michelle praised both Supervisor Haupt and Director Plucker for caring enough to dig into the problem and finding a “fix” so quickly. It only took six days!

I would also like to say “thank you”. It is truly great to have people in our local government, who care and are so responsive to a citizen’s concern. Also, “thank you” Michelle for deciding to do something about the problem.

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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Liz Writes Life 6-9-15

June 9, 2015
Liz Writes Life

Yippee, yahoo! Finally, we have a winner of the Triple Crown horse race with American Pharoah winning the Belmont Stakes on Saturday. I just loved how Jockey Victor Espinoza kept him checked, yet in the lead for over half the race, and then gave him the go. And boy did he go – winning by over five lengths. There is just something magical about a horse race, especially when your favorite horse wins.

Wedding

It was such fun to see and visit with Congressman Doug LaMalfa and his Field Rep. Erin Ryan at Theo Dowling and David Johnson’s wedding on Saturday in Scott Valley. Yep, Theo and Doug are good friends from the agriculture world. Theo worked for the Public Lands Council, which promotes multiple-use of federally-managed lands and was working in Washington D.C., when Doug was elected in 2012 as our CA. Dist. 1 U.S. Representative.

Friends, old and new, visited with our congressman and he took several photos of the happy couple. Doug told me that he believes our area is special. Hum, I think Siskiyou is his favorite county, but let’s keep it a secret and not brag to the other counties!

Speaking of Erin Ryan, she will be sharing information on the corruption that has been uncovered at the Oakland Office of the Veterans Administration at the Yreka Tea Party Patriots meeting tonight at 6:30 p.m. The meeting is at the Covenant Chapel Church on 200 Greenhorn Road in Yreka. Erin is always full of great information and delivers with twists of humor.

Next week on June 16th at the Yreka Tea Party Patriots, Siskiyou Co. Supervisor Ray Haupt will provide an update on the spotted owl fiasco that has stopped harvest and thinning of our over-grown forests.

Speaking of Ray, he called me last week to share one of his Aunt Myrtle’s sauerkraut recipes. He said to take a Dutch oven and simply smother a pork roast with sauerkraut then bake for five hours. I think he was bragging a bit on his German ancestry. I have German ancestry too, but I don’t have an Aunt Myrtle’s sauerkraut recipe. Thanks for sharing, Ray.

Garden

Because it warmed up so much several weeks ago, I cut open the bottom of the peat pots, where I had started the watermelon and cantaloupe and planted them in the garden. It has been several years, since I used peat pots and I was having a hard time regulating the water to them. I am happy to say that several watermelon plants have already emerged, but not the cantaloupe.

The rhubarb has re-grown so much I am shocked – in just a week. It won’t be long until it will need harvesting again. Also can’t believe how much the potatoes, tomatoes and onions have grown; and the third crop of lettuce has caught up to the first.

I’ve got a dirty job to do this week. Yep, there are twice as many cucumber plants than I need. It is really hard to pull out the plants, when I have fretted about them for over a month. But I only want 15, so I’ll just have to get tough and do it. Ugh.

Fire tax bills

Siskiyou County finally received the newest annual installment of the Fire Prevention Fee bills of which most of us refer to as the California Fire Tax. The Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Assoc. is continuing its lawsuit against the state on this $150 fee. It is slowly moving through the courts.
So, once again, Howard Jarvis recommends that each taxpayer send in the demand for a refund – if Jarvis wins the suit. Until then, Jarvis says it is important to pay the fee, so you will not receive a fine. The refund form can be found online at: Fire Tax Protest.org. Click on the big blue button to the right that says “Complete Petition”. This will take you to another link to click to print out the one-page form.

POW

More on our May 28th Protect Our Water meeting: Andrew Hurlimann told us about the dilemma the Farmer’s Ditch legal water right users are having in getting the diversion from Scott River fixed – after the January 2015 high water took it out. Farmers have been able to get water, but the ditch diversion needs to be improved.

Andrew also shared about the Tactical Gun Owners class that he took and said it was well worth the $100 to learn how to handle several kinds of guns in various situations. Distinguished Firearms Instruction will hold two more Tactical Gun classes in late September including a Women’s Only class. Rick Deruyter, Distinguished Firearms owner and class instructor, is also holding a California Concealed Weapon’s class on June 28th. Openings are still available. Call Rick at 530-524-7594 to get signed up.

POW will hold its next meeting June 25th at the Fort Jones Community Center at 7 p.m.

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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Liz Writes Life 6-2-15

June 2, 2015
Liz Writes Life

Garden

Harvested about 20 pounds of rhubarb and gave most of it to a friend, who wanted to fill her freezer. Some folks claim that you should not cut rhubarb, but harvest it by grabbing the base of the stalk and pulling it away with a twist. I was able to do that to some stalks, but ended-up cutting quite a few. I haven’t had any problem as new stalks seem grow back just fine. Maybe, it is because our soil is so porous and it doesn’t get a chance to rot. I don’t know.

Wow, the corn started coming up in six days and there are now over 30 cucumber plants. This last-ditch effort to get more peas to grow is working as several have popped-up. The five plants that grew from the first planting in March are about to bloom. Never did get any pea plants from the April planting.

Received a phone call from Carol White, in Scott Valley, asking about my recipe for sauerkraut. Mine comes from the book “Putting Food By” and is only 6 tablespoons of salt to 10 pounds of sliced cabbage. The book says to layer it. I usually put in two-inches of sliced cabbage, then sprinkle a tablespoon of salt; tamp it down a bit with a potato masher and then do another layer. Anyway, Carol planted the cabbage plants in late winter and they are big enough to harvest and she is hungry for sauerkraut. She has made it before, but wanted to check out my recipe.

Carol also had really good luck this winter growing chard, kale and spinach. She said that she covered them every night with the white frost-protection blanket and it certainly provided significant protection.

Flag Day

Flag Day is June 14th, but the public is invited to commentate Flag Day on June 13th at the veterans section of Evergreen Cemetery in Yreka at 10 a.m. The Marine Corps League Siskiyou Detachment will conduct a brief ceremony and include a proper flag retirement. Services will be provided by the Marine Corps League, American Legion, and Veterans Commission. Any unserviceable flags can be dropped off at Yreka Ace Hardware or the Veteran Service Office at 105 E. Oberlin Rd. Yreka.

More regulations

Must say I am disgusted with the federal EPA (Environmental Protection Agency), which ignored bipartisan opposition and over one million public comments and finalized its rule to massively expand federal jurisdiction over water and private property. Through “The Waters of the United States” rule, navigable waters just received an outlandish new definition that can now include intermittent streams, vernal pools, irrigation ditches and ponds. (Rain puddles!)

Our Dist. 1 California Congressman Doug LaMalfa sent out a press release of his disappointment explaining that Congress never approved the rule and there is no federal law that authorized this newest EPA’s action. He advocates that federal funding should be stripped from the EPA’s proposal and the “EPA should be reminded that congress writes our nation’s laws, not unelected bureaucrats.” Hooray for our Congressman.

This change in navigable definition has been a worry for several decades. I was just as upset when Scott River received the designation of “navigable” by the federal agencies. Now we know why, because anything that is considered “navigable” can be regulated by the feds.

POW meeting

President Mike Adams explained the situation with the little suction dredge miners and the CA. Dept. of Fish and Wildlife (Game). Game Wardens are harassing dredgers that have put their equipment into the river on their legal claims and even arrested one, because he wouldn’t sign the citation. Wardens took him to the Siskiyou Co. Jail, but apparently it was full and he was released. The arrest was a misdemeanor.

The Happy Camp-based New 49ers are filing an injunction against the DFW regarding its lack of obeying San Bernardino Superior Court Judge Ochoa’s recent decision that maintains the DFW does not have jurisdiction over mining claims in federally-managed lands. Interesting turn of event that’s for sure.

Dist. 5 County Supervisor Ray Haupt spoke about the field trip he had been on most of the day. The Council of Environmental Policy from the White House was here with Forest Service officials to view the wildfire aftermath from last summer’s lightning storms. Many of us have provided public comment on the “Westside Recovery Project” asking for immediate harvesting of the timber to speed recovery. Of course, the Greenies seem to like burned trees and charred soils, so they are fighting the process that could expedite thinning and fuel-loading treatments. It was significant that the federal-level of the Council of Environmental Policy showed up to, hopefully, help with this process.

Ray also provided information on the new marijuana ordinance, the unanimous code enforcement vote by the supervisors and why the jail really is below state regulations and a new one must be built.

I’ll share more on the POW meeting next week.

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.

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Liz Writes Life 5-26-15

May 26, 2015
Liz Writes Life

A big “thank you” goes out to the groups that held ceremonies honoring our soldiers and veterans on Memorial Day. The American Legion Perry Harris Post #260 members outdid themselves, again, as they placed over 1,000 red, white and blue USA flags on white crosses on graves throughout the valley and even over in Salmon River. Chaplin Chet McBroom told me that more than 400 were placed in the Etna Cemetery, which is where the Post also raised a veterans’ wall several years ago. Flags are placed on the graves of all U.S. military before Memorial Day and taken down the following week. That is quite a job. The cemeteries were beautiful with lots of fresh silk and real flowers placed on many graves by family and friends. . It is good to remember and appreciate our loved ones and veterans.
Garden
Tom Pease called last week to brag that he picked ripe tasty strawberries. I was surprised, cuz he lives in Siberia, oh, I mean Quartz Valley. He explained that the plants receive full sun and are planted on the south side of his garage/shop that provides lots of protection from winter weather. Tom said he does have wire mesh over them to keep the varmints and dogs out.
Our poor asparagus outside the garden hasn’t been irrigated for two years, but several plants have produced stems. I like to eat them raw. My husband experimented by putting a few on the barbecue with steak and they are really tasty. Because of the possibility of reducing our water usage and garden area, yet I really want some asparagus in the future, we planted six roots inside the garden fence last week. Yep, garden season is underway.
Last week’s rains have been a God-send. We had planted a bunch of five-year old cucumber seeds. They were still germinating well last year, but I decided to plant about 50 seeds even though I only want 15 plants for eating, dill pickles and bread n butter pickles. They started poking up Sunday night. Yay!
With such great moisture in the ground, we planted green beans, corn and peas (again) last weekend. I am starting the watermelon, cantaloupe, basil, parsley and cabbage in little peat pots. Oh, the cabbage plants that I bought are producing cauliflowers! Oops. The plants didn’t look like they had been stunted, but they are growing a cauliflower and are less than a foot tall.
So, I decided to plant several cabbages from seed. Hopefully they will still mature by October. I ran into friend Peggy Heide, who told me that she neglected to harvest her cabbage last fall, but decided to check it out during the winter months. After pulling back several ugly layers of leaves, the cabbage was just fine. Hum, I may not make much sauerkraut this year and pick the cabbage as we need it.
Forest Tour
In learning more about the possibility of establishing pre-fire-lines and wide shaded-fuel-breaks on ridge-tops as a preventive tool in stopping catastrophic wildfires, I spoke with Terry Salvestro this week. He is the timber lands manager for Fruit Growers Supply Company based in Hilt.
Terry attended the Forest Tour on May 7th hosted by private landowner Richard Hartshorn in the Horse Creek watershed. Hartshorn and other neighbors are looking to save their area from fire, which they were threatened by last summer. They believe that building a five-mile-long fire-line with a 400 to 500-foot wide shaded-fuel-break along the ridge through Klamath National Forest and the privately-held lands of Fruit Growers could just be the trick.
Terry said the Beaver Fire, last year, burned extremely hot and fast into Fruit Growers lands making it difficult for fire fighters to stop the lightning-caused fires. He agrees that pre-planning and strategies are a major key to slowing and stopping fire.
“It would be a shame if Fruit Growers and the USFS didn’t utilize Richard’s efforts,” said Terry, “because he has already provided vegetation management that is a logical tie-in.”
Terry then explained Fruit Growers plan: “After salvage is completed on the Beaver fire, Fruit Growers will re-plant all areas of the burn and manage strategic locations as shaded-fuel-breaks by increased tree spacing and managing fuels. This will allow firefighters opportunity to construct defendable fire-lines at these locations. Mechanical tree thinning will be conducted to construct similar fuel-breaks in other areas of our ownership over time as we feed our small log sawmill now under construction in Yreka. The ridge between FGS and the Hartshorn property will be a high priority.”
Water
Scott Valley Protect Our Water meets this Thursday, May 28th at the Fort Jones Community Center. Time is 7 p.m. Please bring a dessert to share as we eat before, during and after.
We have another great line up of speakers including Ray Haupt, Siskiyou Co. Dist. 5 Supervisor, and newly-elected POW President Mike Adams.
Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Call her at 530-467-3515.
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