Last evening my cross the street neighbor with the willow tree was out. I asked him if I could have some branches for learning baskets, “Sure, when?”, “Tomorrow.”, “OK”. Today I went to Garret’s, bought some nice clippers for $10 and stuff for a big batch of beef stew at Safeway. I cooked up the stew, while it was cooking walked up the street. Yesterday they trimmed all the vines, hmm, I picked up a bunch stripped clean and brought them home. I did my best to make a flat basket base, it works OK, very crude, they break on the knuckles.
Next I walked up to the willow, trimmed it cleanly with the new clippers at the junctions so it won’t be noticed or hurt the tree. Big long wafts of branches, dragged the bundle home and stripped the leaves, sorting roughly, braiding a few. I made another base, much better stuff, still crude, broke one center and replaced it, try over. I got a good base using multiple strands, good fun.
When I tried to add a set of side branches, they snapped and wouldn’t stay up. I need to do more research on that technique. I’ll get it. But it’s fun. I have two flat platters of sticks. The rest of the branches will dry, then I’ll get them wet. That’s actually the proper way, dry them then soak as they shrink less. This is really fun and it smells good.
I got five, ate one, bowls of stew, in the fridge and freezer for lunches at work, better than Dinty Moore.
I think if I use fiber glass tape and epoxy to seal the tanks it will be fine.
Fun Sunday and laundry done.

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