February 1, 2011
UPS delivered our RION EcoGrow Greenhouse kit the other day. This 6×10 honey should take care of our early gardening needs with no problems.
Now all we have to do is wait the snow to melt.
January 29, 2011
The temperature was in the high 30’s today with the sun peaking through ever once in a while. Earlier this week Linda mentioned it was time to get the chicken coop cleaned out so today was as good as any.
We used the bucket on the tractor to dump the poop and straw on the garden. This should help us out when growing season starts.
January 17, 2011
It may be January with snow on the ground and more to come, but it is already time to start thinking about what to plant in the garden this spring. Our garden did pretty well last year considering it was our first one. We learned a lot of lessons and I’m sure still have many more to learn.
As soon as the weather begins to warm we plan to get a load of donkey manure from my cousin’s farm and spread it on the garden. We probably should have done it in the fall but we ran out of time with other projects that seemed to run together. We still need to get a rototiller and it has moved up on the list of must haves. A nice load of nutrient rich manure mixed into the soil should be a good boost of fertilizer to grow all those scrumptious veggies.
This past weekend we ordered our seeds from Heirloom Organics (http://www.heirloom-organics.com). We wanted to try growing plants that we could gather the seed from after harvest to dry and use in the coming years. I don’t believe you can do that with hybrids seeds or maybe its that you can only save them a few times.
We don’t plan to grow any pumpkins this year. I was able to can up enough from last years harvest to last a few years. Sweet potatoes and white potatoes are off the list too. Ours just didn’t seem to do well.
We also hope to get a few guineas to help keep the bug population down. I have heard that they are also good watch dogs and alert you to anyone who enters the property. Ruby does a pretty good job at that already.
Time flies and before you know it, the days will become longer, the birds will sing and the temperatures will be just right for the crocus and daffodils to break through the crusty soil. The hum of lawnmowers will sing along with the bees and the sweet perfume of wild flowers will send our senses reeling. Ah…warm days are coming along with sunshine to melt the ice from our shoulders, and it will be time to brush the cobwebs from the porch swing. Are you ready?
November 8, 2010
This morning started out like most mornings. The thermometer read 20 degrees this morning, so the first chore of the day was to stoke up the fire. We have been leaving the chickens in the coop until about ten o’clock so they will lay their eggs in the nesting boxes. All six of our hens are laying now.
My cousin is out of town for a few days so I had to go over to his farm and feed up the donkeys, goats, and barn cats. I can’t forget Sandy their fat Lab. She will be waiting impatiently for her breakfast. I always take Ruby with me so they can have a visit and a little playtime.
Nothing else was on the agenda today, so I thought I would can up one of those Cushaw pumpkins Vickie gave us. I got all my canning supplies ready and sharpened my knives. Apparently I sharpened them too well because I ended up slicing my thumb. I got the bleeding under control and put a bandaid on. Tough to do one handed. It still wanted to bleed, probably because I have to take an aspirin a day and it thins the blood. My pumpkin lay there on the table cut open with seeds spilling out. I had to finish the job or it would spoil and go to waste. The best thing I could think of to do was put on a plastic glove and finish canning the pumpkin. It worked great.
I canned ten pints. I’m usually very careful, but today was just one of those days. I went to take a lid off of a pot, without pot holders ( idiot) and the steam burned my fingers on my right hand. So, now both hands are bunged up. I hurried up and cut a leaf from my aloe plant to put on my burning fingers. It immediately soothed them. They burned most of the afternoon, but I kept applying the aloe and now they feel fine.
Later on I noticed one of my hens was not hanging with the rest of the flock. Went to check her out and noticed that she was limping and had a tear in the skin on her back near her wing. A chickens skin is very thin. I’m not sure what caused it, but I suspect it could be from the Roosters jumping on her back. The poor thing looked pitiful.
I was able to catch her by throwing a towel over her. It was hard to tell the extent of the injury while trying to hold her covered in a towel. Mind you my hands were not in good working order, but I was able to clean the wound with warm soapy water and peroxide. She will have to be separated from the flock or they will begin to peck at her if she shows illness. I put straw in our large dog crate and gave her some water. That’s the best I can do for her. I will be surprised if she makes it. Chickens are susceptible to shock and infection. Most injuries are fatal. We can only hope that she will recover.
It’s painful to see my animals hurt, but that’s part of farm life. Injuries are bound to happen and out here and you have to be able to take care of them yourself. After the events of today, hopefully I make it to bed without stubbing my toe or having to bandage a bloody dog paw.