Summerlike temperatures push us out of hibernation

rboone@theolympian.comApril 1, 2013 

The warmest day of the year worked its magic on Easter Sunday, energizing Olympia-area residents to get out and walk, run, bike, soak up the sun, or tend to their gardens under cloudless, sparkling-blue skies.

The high temperature of 71 degrees came about 5 p.m. Sunday and was close to tying the record high for the day — 73 in 1987— according to the National Weather Service.

Sunday’s warm temperatures capped a weekend of gorgeous weather.

Teri Camarillo and her family spent part of Sunday gazing at Budd Inlet — the snow-capped Olympic Mountains in the distance — from the Port of Olympia’s walking path along the north end of the port peninsula.

Camarillo is new to the area, having recently moved to Olympia from Salt Lake City to be closer to her mother, she said.

“It’s where I want to be,” said Camarillo, who was sitting on one of several benches along the walking path, taking in the view of Budd Inlet at low tide.

The Olympia area, of course, is generally known for its blues-inducing gray skies and steady rain.

Camarillo said she’s ready for that, too.

“I like the rain,” she said.

Meanwhile, some residents of Panorama, the large retirement community in Lacey, were busy working in the Panorama Pea Patch, a collection of 120 garden plots in which residents rent to grow fruit, vegetables and flowers.

Master Gardener and Panorama resident Phyllis Sturges tended to her garden for about an hour Sunday. It is her fifth season of gardening at the patch, she said.

She planted onions Sunday, but that’s just a fraction of what she grows throughout the year.

Sturges also grows blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, garlic, broccoli, radishes, spinach and potatoes, she said.

Some of it she keeps, some of it she donates to a Panorama Pea Patch program called Friday Share and some of it she donates to the Thurston County Food Bank.

Sturges uses an approach to gardening called French intensive organic, which calls for lots of fertilizer and for plants to be grown close together, producing high yields, she said.

Jeanne Thompson, another Panorama resident, also was busy Sunday tending to her vegetable garden.

She has two plots, she said.

Thompson’s vegetables and fruits include asparagus, chard, kale, carrots, blueberries, cherries and onions, as well as flowers, such as sunflowers and chrysanthemums.

“It’s a wonderful, wonderful opportunity for people who live here,” she said about the pea patch.

Rolf Boone: 360-754-5403

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