We’ve been busy and out of town for the past few days. We came home to, alas, weeds and work. Taking a short holiday from a farm always seems like a mixed bag; we get a break only to have to go at it extra-hard as soon as we return….oh well! Read more... (585 words, estimated 2:20 mins reading time)
What a weekend! Let’s skip the narrative, and just try listing the events: Read more... (845 words, estimated 3:23 mins reading time)
Sunshine at last, and warm weather on the way. As I drove home last night from a truly lackluster CPR class, I noticed how much the stars have already shifted. Orion, the constellation that dominates the winter night sky, has rotated out of sight (or more accurately, the earth did–it’s all relative). Leo is headed away west, and the great bear fills the sky along with his guardian Arcturus in Bootes. Soon the scorpion will be rising, decorating the southern sky all summer long. The stars, to me, describe the inevitability of the seasons. The wheel of the night sky revolves through all my little endeavors. I think of how long the stars have been in place, and how little we all are.
Men have it hard. Read more... (578 words, 4 images, estimated 2:19 mins reading time)
By now, the neighbor’s rooster has met its maker. Sunday I returned from a visit with friends and family, to find scattered hay and damaged plants for the nth time. The culprit has been a handsome but tenacious fowl which always ran away to the northwest when pursued. I decided to try to find the owners, since it was a matter of time before he scratched a patch of heirloom plants to death (and then I go ballistic). They were very nice about the whole thing, and I’m pretty sure the rooster had a generally nice life. The owners raise Bashkir curly horses, which I had never heard of before. I got lots of feedback on some of my ideas for the property, which helped a lot. This man sure knew about almonds! *sigh* so much for that idea….back to pondering specialty crops. Read more... (346 words, estimated 1:23 mins reading time)
On Friday Ken came close to finishing the last of the arbor/gate structure. Now I am going to have to climb on a ladder to paint it many obnoxious colors, and stop traffic some more in the neighborhood. I mean, beautify the roadside with a cheerful palette of floral-inspired shades of paint. When I was young my parents preferred white in their home–white walls, white carpet, white curtains. I just like color, lots and lots of it. I haven’t decided if this is some form of subconscious reaction to my childhood surroundings, but parents be warned–let the kids paint their room purple. It could save a neighborhood in the future! Read more... (1007 words, estimated 4:02 mins reading time)
Every time I sit down to write after a weekend, the words I want to open with are "all sorts of stuff happened". While I will try to resist redundancy, it DOES always seem to be the case. Read more... (1236 words, 4 images, estimated 4:57 mins reading time)
Last night I found the first ripe golden raspberry. Delicious! Unfortunately the three ants that were lurking on the berry lost their dinner. The ants already have exceeded my willingness to tolerate them for this year. I found groups of them engaged in an annoying activity–clustering on rose buds and devouring them. I had never seen this behavior until last year. About 30 ants will devolve on a single rose bud. They will all be completely still, munching away. The only indication of their activity is that the rose bud which used to be pointy is now flat and eaten. Grrrrr. The little sprinkler of sevin dust came out, ants bye-bye. Read more... (344 words, estimated 1:23 mins reading time)
Caught fewer slugs last night in the beer! Disgusting little things! I have been trying to get enough water on the sweet peas to keep them moist. With generous water they keep blooming, but as soon as the ground dries they will begin dying and going to seed. It’s inevitable, but with any luck they can last through much of summer. The Maxamillian sunflower is now 2 feet tall, I am tying hoops of twine around the stems to try to keep the plant compact. Last year it bowed out under its own weight, and made it to ten feet tall.
I found a willow switch on the ground that I was going to use for a project, and I wondered why it was still green. The branch had formed a root and was growing into the ground….I potted it and will see if it survives. The eggplant seeds that were a free gift from Peaceful Valley farm supply have had a horrid germination rate–25%. It’s going to take some work to get enough plants from that seed packet! The next few weeks are going to require getting a lot of seeds planted. Melons, gourds, pumpkins, squashes, and more all need to go in the ground. It’s looking like rain is coming tomorrow, which the ground could use. We drew blood from little Xerxes, his breathing doesn’t sound right. I’ll have it tested at work for avian respiratory diseases. He has such tiny veins! I’m starting to wonder why the birds that live in the house develop respiratory problems. Makes me wonder about our indoor air quality (which I doubt is very good, but that’s what windows are for).
Mopsy decided to go on a neighborhood walkabout yesterday. Bad pea.