Can Do with Su – Raised Garden Bed Instructions

Dungeness Barn House – raised bed with purple cabbage

Su is the mastermind behind all of the building projects at Dungeness Barn House. She applies her talents and skills from working at Habitat for Humanity and her own construction business to create original designs.
When asked “What do you like about building?” Su’s philosophy of designing and building is to create something out of someone’s idea but that they didn’t know how to make – and “…make it happen. It makes me happy to see them happy with the final result.”

Which is a good thing because Clare is always thinking up new challenges for Su!

Clare wanted raised beds to be designed so that she could “… still garden at 80.” Waist high, and made of materials that will weather well over time, with a deep base to allow for the roots to grow. Bales of straw at the bottom provide organic matter that decomposes into a rich mulch and holds moisture. The beds are drip irrigated because as Su puts it: “I didn’t want want to spend all day watering the garden.” Whatever your age – making gardening easier and being able to easily access the plants (and weeds!) can make the difference between a garden that is maintained over time, versus one that gets neglected because it’s not “user friendly.”

 

Dungeness Barn House – raised bed with nasturtium

The raised beds are planted with a wide variety of vegetables – from potatoes to lettuces, spinach and heirloom-variety tomatoes. Guests are fed from the garden and from local farms from whatever is in season. The Dungeness Barn House chickens supply the eggs!

From the gardens of Dungeness Barn House

Late summer and early fall is the height of the growing season in the Dungeness. Hardy crops: potatoes, garlic, spinach and kales can be harvested even into the early winter months.

Peas and cucumbers are trellised from four corners of two of the larger beds.

Dungeness Barn House raised beds in early spring

Sequim is a cool-weather growing climate – and because the Dungeness Barn House is located on a high bluff waterfront, there are additional challenges of wind and salt air. The gardens are sheltered behind the buildings, where it’s warm enough for roses to bloom in a mild winter.

Dungeness Barn House – raised beds, sheltered

This design is flexible; make one, see how it goes and add on.

Happy gardening!

Dungeness Barn House Raised Bed

Dungeness Barn House Bed and Breakfast at Two Crows Farm
Raised Garden Beds

So my beautiful and wonderful partner/wife, Clare, decided she wants to be able to garden when she’s 80…and figures since she won’t be able to get on her hands and knees any longer, (or most likely won’t be able to get up if she did get down there), she asked me to make these raised beds for her. Now, she can garden (and possibly with her walker later in life) standing upright and the boxes make it easy. So I’ve tried to put together what I did and some of the tips I found while making them for her. I love her creative energy. She’s always got something new for me to try and make.

Materials needed for one 3 x 5 box:

8 – pressure treated 2 x 4 x 8 (base structure)
2 – doug fir 1 x 2 x 8 (trim boards)
2 – corrugated metal (patina or rusty if you like) approx. 27” x 16’ long
2 – bales + 2 flakes (straw per box)
3” screws (make sure for use in pressure treated material or they will rust)
1” screws for metal corrugated roofing (small rubber washer attached)
6 p nails 1 1/2” long
Landscape fabric (under the boxes and over the straw)
1 yard (approx.) (Organic) Soil

Cuts:

4 – 2 x 4 x 57” pressure treated lumber
4 – 2 x 4 x 36” pressure treated lumber
8 – 2 x 4 x 21” pressure treated lumber
2 – 1 x 2 x 32 3/4” doug fir
2 – 1 x 2 x 55 1/4” doug fir
2 – 27” x 56 3/4” corrugated metal
2 – 27” x 31 1/4” corrugated metal

Installation:

Take 1 – 2 x 4 x 57” pressure treated lumber and attach to the inside end of 1 – 2 x 4 x 36” pressure treated lumber with the screws. This forms and “L” shape. You will repeat this step 3 more times. Once you have 4 “L” shapes you will connect 2 of them together to form a box ( [] ). Repeat with the remaining 2 “L” shapes. Now you have 2 boxes.

Take 2 – 2 x 4 x 21” pressure treated lumber and screw them together for the side corners (long side to long side of the lumber). Repeat 3 more times. You now have all the side corner pieces ready to install on the boxes.

Toe nail the side corners to the boxes with the 3” screws. (I placed the side corner cuts opposite of the way the cuts were for the boxes so it would be stronger and it helped for screwing on the metal later.) (I also found it was easiest to screw on one side at a time to the bottom all four corners and then flip the entire unit onto the top (which is now laying on the bottom) and then screw it into place.) (It forms a 3 D box). After all the corner sides are screwed on the box, it should be pretty sound and you are ready for the metal.

Install the long metal on the long sides first with the metal screws. Then attach the smaller sides with the metal screws. (again, I found it easiest to place the boxes on their sides so I wasn’t crawling inside to try and attach the metal to the lumber) (learned that the hard way, ha!) Once all sides are attached place the box upright and you are ready to install the trim.

Since the metal sticks out a bit and can be very sharp, I used the 1 x 2 to hold it in place and protect the edge. Using clamps to hold the 1 x 2 and the metal close to the 2 x 4, nail the 1 x 2 to the 2 x 4 holding the metal in-between. (I used my pneumatic nailer for this, you could also use screws if you don’t have a nailer, although you might need to pre-drill so the wood doesn’t split) Either way, once this step is completed all the way around the top of the box you are ready to install the straw.

Take landscape fabric and place where you are going to be putting your boxes. I use 20 p nails 4” long and fender washers to hold down my fabric as we have a lot of rocks and harder soils. Once that is down and you’ve placed your box where you want it take 2 bales of straw and place side by side inside the box. You will find that there is a gap at the end or they look short and they are, that’s where the 2 flakes of another bale will fill in. Then cut some of the landscape fabric to cover the top of the straw to prevent it from sprouting up into your box. You’re now ready for soil.

It will take not quite a yard of soil per box giving you about 8” – 10” of planting depth. As the straw decomposes, you can fill the space with more soil, compost, manure etc. Thus, reviving the soil each year. You are now ready to plant.

Have fun and enjoy!

-Su

On a separate note, I installed a drip watering system on a timer so I’m not spending hours (although I’d like to sometimes) watering the garden. So far, it’s worked out great.

Any questions you can reach me on my cell at 360-821-9294 or leave a message. I’ll get back to you.

Happy Gardening!

F*** it paint it white…with a kiss of pink!

Clare had decided that she wanted to paint her office a perfect barely there, seashell pink.
“Growing up, I have always been against pink and I hated wearing it as a little girl. But I wanted to do something different and fresh. So I decided to take a chance on pink, and this would be a very subtle version of it. Not the bubble gum color of my childhood.”
She showed me a beautiful picture from a paint catalogue of that featured the perfect barely there, seashell pink.
Then we went into her office, and she pointed at wall covered with sploches of colors that varied from a pinkish mud to pink puce. Pink puce is a color that I never want to see again.
“There! THERE!!! Look at it! That’s the exact color from the picture in the paint catalogue!”
It was the pink puce patch. And it looked horrible. It was surrounded by it’s variations like an evil mold that had spawned and mutated on Clare’s wall.
Trying to be optimistic, there was a slight silver lining in that we both agreed that the charcoal color on the trim was perfect. At least that was nailed down.
Clare: “It’s ridiculous! I’m so mad! You think it’s going to take 4 hours and then 4 days later, you are still working on it. I decided to try and experiment and make my own shade that the paint store could then color match, but it’s not working at all!”
We compared the catalogue picture to the puce patch – and no… not a match at all.
Clare: “I WANT ANSWERS!!!”
So… trying to be helpful – I showed her the Shinola watches that had this beautiful shade of champagne pink that I had been admiring earlier that day. Like Clare, I had also fought against wearing or being associated with this color in any way as a child, yet now was strangely attracted to it. Maybe it was some sort of odd virus going around that we had both caught: “The Pink Virus.”
I wished her luck and went on my way for that day. Clare has excellent taste, she’ll figure it out.
The next day I returned and asked her how it was going… She sighed and said: “I decided, fuck it, paint it white.”
She had returned to paint store and had looked at colors that were more in champagne zone, and started to fall down the rabbit hole of multiple paint swatches, but then decided to “Stop the insanity. Fuck it, paint it white.”
The paint consultant had shared with her that the problem with pink is that if you want it to be a more muted pink, like a “dusty rose” then they add black to tone it down. Then if you add more white to the color, it becomes gray looking because of all of the black in it.
Clare: “Pink is now a “four letter word” in my vocabulary. I hate pink. Enough insanity!”
So Clare painted the walls with primer… and I didn’t want to tell her this but the primer had a slight PINK TONE!!!! Unfortunately, she noticed it and asked me if I could see it to and because I can’t lie about art-related things, I had to agree. She decided to carry on. Maybe the pinkish primer is the answer… and maybe we just both have “Pink Eye” from the virus.
To cheer her up, I decided to read her an article from “The Bloggess” called “That’s how you pick your battles.” Ironically the website of The Bloggess featured prominently Clare’s perfect shade of pink… http://thebloggess.com/2011/06/21/and-thats-why-you-should-learn-to-pick-your-battles/
This seemed like an especially cruel twist of fate for Clare and pushed her over the edge: “Now where ever I look, I see pink… I’ll show you about pink, you know nothing about Pink – John Snow!!!! I want answers!”
The next day, she texted me to say that she had found the perfect way to get that kiss of pink… She had made her own white glaze with a kiss of pink and applied it with a rag roller over the white wall.
I told her that the blog would now have to be a novel.
Clare: “I’m very pleased NOW. I am inspired to get it done and all together. The dark gray trim will be stunning. Furniture will be functional, rustic, charming and with the yin and yang that I am always talking about. Contrast, layers, texture and light.”
Clare just rocks home decorating.
Fuck it, paint it white…. with a kiss of pink.

Dungeness Barn House Hash

01_Dungeness Barn House Hash

DUNGENESS BARN HOUSE “HASH” RECIPE
The signature breakfast dish served at the Dungeness Barnhouse – use this recipe as a guideline and have fun with varying the ingredients depending upon what’s fresh and seasonal. Serves 4.

Seasonal Starch base:
Fall and winter about 4 cups chopped 
• butternut squash
• yams
• purple potatoes

Summer and spring about 4 cups chopped
• heirloom potatoes grown at the Barnhouse
• yukon gold
• red potatoes

Veggie Layer: 
4 cups chopped
• sprouted broccoli
• zucchini
• red bell pepper
• onion
• 1-2 cloves fresh garlic
• One 15.25oz./432g. can of black beans

Seasoning: 
• Grill Mates Montreal Steak Seasoning
• Ground fennel seed

Flavored Olive oil: 
• mushroom & sage (starch layer)
• lemon or lime (veggie layer & greens)

Greens: 
• spinach 6 cups or 2 bunches
• 1-2 cloves garlic using garlic press

Protein: 
• 4 Eggs

Topping: 
• 1 cup sprouts

Carb & fat: 
• 4 slices Bavarian rye bread, cut in half on a diagonal (triangle shaped)
• earth balance butter – spread onto slices

 

There are no rules:

The Barnhouse Hash recipe varies depending upon the seasons and whatever is “fresh and pretty that day.” The recipe always feels fresh because of the rotation of ingredients, and it’s also simple and easy to make. Play with it and have fun!

Don’t be a slave to the ingredients list and swap out elements based on what’s handy for you.

This recipe can be adjusted for more or less depending on the number of people who are being served.

02 Dungeness Barn House Hash

Starch Base:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees, and if possible, use the convection setting

Dice up all of the “seasonal starch base” elements into bite size pieces – (or better yet, get Su to do it! Your evermost fabulous “Su Chef” to do the prep!).

Spread on cookie sheet with silpat.

Tip: these can be bought from Costco inexpensively – and also used for crafts (keep food spillpaths separate from craft ones).

 

 


03 Dungeness Barn House Hash Silpat

Drizzle flavored olive oil – Clare’s  “go to” is Wild Mushroom and Sage. Clare strongly believes in the benefit of using flavored olive oil to add depth and give food the “X” factor – its better but you don’t know why… this is why… muhahahahahahahah!

Note – there’s no seasoning aside from the olive oil in this layer. It provides a background note to the layered flavors, and to add seasoning, would make it overpower the other elements.

Roast until some edges are a little browned/blackened – but not all, because it means that it’s over cooked. Depending upon the quantity – about 30 minutes.


04 Dungeness Barn House Hash Flavored Oils

Veggie Layer:

Starch layer should go in the oven first, veggies about 10 minutes later

Chop up all of the veggies into bit-sized pieces, using a silpat, spread on a cookie sheet, drizzle with lemon or lime flavored olive oil. There’s no need to cook the onions and/or garlic separately… just mix everything together, raw.

We roast the starch and the veggie layers “separately but equally” because you don’t want the moisture in the veggies to sog up the starch layer which should be a little crispy.

Cook about 20 minutes – until the veggies are softened.

Keep an eye on things, don’t over cook veggies!

 


05 Dungeness Barn House Hash Montreal Steak Seasoning

Sprinkle generously with Grill Mates Montreal Steak Seasoning and ground fennel. Clare loves this seasoning because it contains what she calls the “Super Special Secret Ingredient” – fennel. Fennel by itself tastes like licorice, but used with other ingredients, helps to brighten and intensify the flavor, especially for ingredients that have a heavy or earthy tone to them – like broccoli. She uses the metaphor of how two restaurants can both serve spaghetti sauce, but one tastes so much better, yet it’s hard to pinpoint exactly why.

Clare also buys fennel seed, grinds it in a coffee grinder (which she then keeps on hand in a small jar) and adds on top of the seasoning.

 


06 Dungeness Barn House Hash Clare Fennel

Turn off oven and open door slightly

Sprinkle canned black beans (drain can) over the veggies to let them warm up

Leave both the starch and veggie layers in the over to stay warm while working on the next steps…

Spinach Layer:

Lightly sauté a bed of spinach, using flavored lemon or lime olive oil

Keep the stems on – so that the spinach can be a “nest” for a poached egg

While it’s sautéing – use a garlic press to add one clove of garlic

Egg Layer:

Poached or fried eggs.

 


07 Dungeness Barn House Hash Egg

 

Video Play

Assemble:

• Starch base
• Veggies
• Spinach (making a “nest” for the egg”)
• Top with sprouts – (on this I used Sunflower and arugula mix from Itsy Bitsy Greens.

On the side:
Bavarian rye bread made with sunflowers (Toasted)
Earth balance – “butter” made with an olive oil, organic

09 Dungeness Barn House Hash Rye Bread

Bask in the glory of beautiful breakfast that is the start of a beautiful day.

Receive many compliments on your excellent cooking skills. : )

It’s All about Food and Art in October on the Olympic Peninsula

Two specials to choose from in October at the 

Dungeness Barn House Bed and Breakfast

Fall Food & Art Tour – Sequim to Port Townsend

plus $25.00 gift card.

Oct 7th-9th 2016

and

The Dungeness Crab & Seafood Festival
Oct 7 – Oct 9 · Port Angeles, WA
IMG_2228
Looking to get away before the holiday rush?

We’ve got just the ticket for you!

Visit the beautiful Olympic Peninsula this fall from Friday thru Sunday, October 7th – 9th, 2016 for a package to see and experience historic Port Townsend, the Port Townsend Farmers Market, Artist Studio Sale at Greybird Barn and stay at one of the two best waterfront Bed and Breakfasts in Sequim. This en suite, 2 night – 3 day retreat is offered for only $550.00 for double occupancy. Single occupancy please call the B & B of their choice for details.

Start now by making your reservation at either; Dungeness Barn House Bed and Breakfast at Two Crows Farm or Greenhouse Inn by the Bay . Then leave the rest up to your innkeepers to make this a fun and exciting weekend getaway.

Some things to look forward to…

Port Townsend Farmers Market & Artist Studio Sale at GreyBird Barn!

Upon your arrival Friday, at the Dungeness Barn House B&B or the Green House Inn on the Bay B&B relax and enjoy wine and appetizers. take in the views, stroll the gardens and beach.  After a great nights sleep, you will awake to a wonderful Saturday morning breakfast. Next you’ll be transported in comfort by a professional shuttle service to beautiful and historical Port Townsend’s Farmers Market. See local foods grown and harvested along with arts and crafts. After leaving the Farmers Market, you’ll be shuttled to The 7th annual “Artist Studio Sale at Greybird Barn” in Port Townsend where local artists are set up to show their goods. You can use your $25.00 gift certificate (one per room reservation) while at this show and purchase some of those holiday gifts early. Then you’ll be shuttled back to the Bed and Breakfast where you are staying for wine and heavy appetizers. Enjoy another wonderful nights sleep and Sunday breakfast before departing for home.

Space is limited, so make your reservation now!

To book your package weekend:

go to either Dungeness Barn House Bed and Breakfast at Two Crows Farm (or Greenhouse Inn by the Bay)

Be sure to mention that you are wanting to be a part of the Food and Art Tour in either your online reservation, online contact, or phone call message.

DUNGENESS CRAB AND SEAFOOD FESTIVAL

Come for the Food, Stay for the Fun!
Join us October 7-9, 2016 for the 15th annual Festival

Stay at the Dungeness Barn House Bed and Breakfast and enjoy Crab Benedict for breakfast before attending the Seafood Festival.

Join the fun at CrabFest, one of the most acclaimed food festivals in the country! The festival celebrates not only the aquaculture, agriculture and maritime traditions of the breathtaking Olympic Peninsula, but brings food, art, music, Native American activities, and children’s events into one spectacular 3-day event for everyone! Located on the gorgeous Port Angeles waterfront next to Olympic National Park and a short ferry ride from sparkling Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, the event celebrates the world-famous Dungeness Crab, named after the nearby village of Dungeness, and the bounty of the sea. Featuring 14 restaurants, cooking demonstrations with celebrity chefs, Chowder Cook-Off, the Grab-a-Crab Derby, local wine and beer, craft and merchant vendors, live music, and many more events. Rain or shine, this is the “party” of the season and, admission, as always, is FREE!

We are delighted to announce that Master Chef Graham Kerr will join us on Sunday at the Chowder Cook Off. 11:00 to 2:00.

 

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Barn House Decorating

I have spent the past 9 months redefining and defining my interior design style.  I have always loved interior design.  I have played with lots of ideas and have been decorating my own space since I was a young girl, with my own room upstairs in our old house in California.  In those days, I had to make do with what I had and that wasn’t much.  I made my bed every morning and kept my room immaculate.  I used old ribbon from gift packages for curtain tie backs and today I would do anything for those old dark hardwood floors.  They were beat up, scratched  and scuffed.  There was no money for refinishing floors, but I would never complain, because somehow my parents found a way for me to have my very own pony in the back yard.
I am sure it was those days, in that old house, on Carnell Street in Whittier California, that has influenced me in all my design decisions over the years.  I have always loved old more than I have loved new.  I have always chosen rough, discarded, rusty and scared, over shiny, smooth and bright.

Rust and rough added to an elegant room creates the yin and yang of decorating for a well balanced room

Rust and rough added to an elegant room creates the yin and yang of decorating for a well balanced room.

Now, here I am at 60 years old, moving from a house that I had lived in for the past 25 years.  I was decorating and remodeling right up until the month before we moved.  I had two and half years to think about how I was going to decorate the Barn House before we actually moved.  I spent hours and hours, thinking where I would put all my treasurers and antiques that I had collected over the years.

Once here and the movers gone, I realized I had to re-think things.  I soon realized that for the Bed and Breakfast, I needed every piece to be functional.  I’ve had to work very hard to no longer just fill a space with the things I loved.  Especially since there is no place to store things.  I always swore that if I had to pay to store it, I really shouldn’t have it.  So many things have had to go and I am not done yet.  The good news is, I love the new things and the older things I have been able to keep and re-purpose.

Stay tuned to read about the wing chairs upholstered in old grain sacks out of a barn in Germany.

Having the time of my life at the Barn House.

Clare