The Mock Pavilion

The ground is covered with straw now, and the passionvines have grown about a foot in two weeks since this photo was taken.

The ground is covered with straw now, and the passionvines have grown about a foot in two weeks since this photo was taken.

It was clear that if I wanted to have any group of people over in the summer and have them survive, that I’d have to have a shade structure.  I have an EZ-Up, which is anything but easy especially when going down, but the shade it provides is minimal and only appropriate at high noon.  I had a look at the line of Eugenia trees right behind Harry Mudd, the cob oven.  The trees had been planted by the previous owner to block the view of the horrendous piecemeal sheds he’d nailed together (most of which have now become walkways and structures).  They had been trimmed up during the removal of the sheds to giant lollypops with floppy arms.  Floppy arms that often broke under the weight of the fruit the trees bore.  I thought that some of these trees could make a good gazebo.

I talked to Steve about it.  Steve works on my ponds and irrigation, and now just about anything else I need to have done since he is skilled in carpentry and other talents which I am not.  Steve cut down some of the trees, brushed them and we discovered that they weren’t very tall at all.

Steve cutting down some of the Eugenia.  Harry Mudd is covered with the blue tarp.

Steve cutting down some of the Eugenia. Harry Mudd is covered with the blue tarp.

At the time I was touring a new friend through the garden who offered some very long cedar logs.  Here began a fiasco having to do with hauling a trailer, misunderstandings, and a lot of very heavy long logs which weren’t used and now need to be returned, but I will not explore that here.

I had a garden party planned; the first large party I’ve ever had.  I thought that the end of June would be a perfect time before the hot weather hit.  Life laughed at me and began a series of intensely hot days more associated with the end of July.  So I told Steve to just buy the wood and build the thing.  He did, and I covered it with some very expensive shade cloth.  By two of the pillars have been planted red passionfruit vines.  When they grow to the top, I’ll replace the shadecloth with wire so that the passionvines can become a living shady roof with fruit dangling down.

This structure, along with some borrowed EZ-Ups, saved the day for the party, which had temperatures in the low 90’s (lower than anticipated, thank goodness!).  The structure is similiar in look to the Fowl Fortress, so it doesn’t seem so out of place, and it is very comfortable to be under during this intense summer.

Nice and cool, with easier access to Harry Mudd.

Nice and cool, with easier access to Harry Mudd.

Why the Mock Pavilion?  Perhaps because it isn’t really a pavilion, just a large shade structure with a piece of plywood over a couple of wooden pallets as a stage.  Really it is because Steve’s last name is Mock, and I couldn’t resist.

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