Sunday, August 11, 2013

Busy Day

Today was busy, this evening I hurt and feel so good. The birds got their food, water, and running room by 7. So I had some time to play.  I cut brush and cleared trails all morning. It was so quiet and peaceful.  I even found a bear trail from a raspberry patch into a grove of trees ---shaded and cool.  Thank you Bears.
When I came past the coop on my way home, the flock was hugging the shade.  They are so smart.  I filled some feeders and stirred them up for a while.

Enjoy the shade....

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Downs and Ups this Summer

Shortly after my last blog in June, I strained my back from bumping around on my little tractor.  It seemed to have dulled my life into a day-to-day existence.  So I would make lists, and do something and let the rest go.
So it was a Season of Less. The solar panels worked. I raised the chicks into big hens. I mowed some of the lawn. I planted some of the garden. Just living around the pain.
Then 2 weeks ago, I started working with a physical therapist.  I stopped the Ibuprofen stuff and started stretching/flexibility exercises.  The pain is much less and I feel like doing things again.  But not so much tractor. I'll try moderation.
The birds are healthy and through their big growth spurt.  The organic feed and being out of the coop in the grassy yard all day seems to be agreeing with them. Yesterday one of the hens was trying to catch a butterfly, it was fun to watch...  I didn't think much about chickens being so curious.

In late June a little Thunderhead storm came through and hail smashed the tomato plants, the apples, the leaves and just left a mess. I was sort of numb.  Now everything is pretty much recovered except for the apples. I am starting to pick off the worst apples and brace up broken trees.  What a big lesson.  I certainly need to use more technology to compete with Nature's surprises. If you have ideas I could use them!

More good news later, It is nice to be excited again.



Monday, June 10, 2013

Summer Starts Now...

Summer Starts Now.....

Today the sun was shining all day! I felt like I was 60 again and I got so many projects done!!! A Wow Day!
 May has been cold and wet.  We got caught in rain storms plus a couple of Rain trains and the puddles just kept coming back. Sunday the ground squished wherever I walked.  I have all these plants in pots waiting for me to get into the garden without getting mud all over.  That could happen in a few days!

Then last month I had to get my eyes fixed. The cataracts were getting badder faster. So for 3 weeks I was supposed to move slow and not put pressure on my eyes.... No weeding, no mowing, no exciting tractor rides. So by now I am in better shape so I can do something again.

Back to today.  I got the fabric down on a new flower bed. There are no flowers yet, 4 little balsam trees and 4 lilac trees set in 2 rows.  It is a picture in my head so far, with clusters of echinachea, that grow larger as the pines and lilac get taller. Good huh?
Then the last picking of asparagus. The bed got a short mow job,some ashes to feed the slugs, and fabric on both sides to slow up next years weeds. The bed will last the winter better and be a lot cleaner for picking. So that was a good job done!
The last thing was the fencing. I have 'maybe miles' of fencing with green plastic wind block.  The winter/spring winds just tore them up and off the wire. So two sections are repaired now, with strips to keep the plastic from tearing.  The hot weather slowed me down, I'm not used to summer at all.  Tomorrow I get to do the fence around the chicken yard. That will be good.

I'm 69 now and days like this are rich and mean a lot.

do good                                      FIRST IRIS

Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Spring Test

Here is a memory from last winter...

 We made brush piles in the woods of old tree tops and brush during the spring and fall of '12.  So while there was snow to limit forest fires, I would snowshoe up hill into the woods and burn the piles down.  There are about 25 acres of woods here and  about 2 are kind of park-like.  Here we cleaned out about half an acre of brush and dead trees around a giant black spruce tree. This was a big pile, 10'x20', and it burned so fast.  Anyway this spot is called 'Picnic Pine' now. It used to be 'The Bear Tree.'  It is easier for me to relax at 'The Picnic Pine.' So we changed it.  I  hope it works....

 This is a funny season.  Winter won't give up.  So I watch what the farmers do.  They have their equipment ready, seeds stored and as soon as the fields dry out a little more they will be out there, working 18 hour days to get the seeds in as quickly as they can. So I am cleaning, frost-seeding clover, cutting the old weeds, getting the wind damaged fences ready.
 This year an organic farmer is going to be harvesting crops from my fallow fields.  He will put in chicken fertilizer, plow, plant, and harvest. At the end of the season we will compare expenses and yield-value to decide who pays who. I have trimmed around the fields. Thursday I pulled out 3 giant old fence posts that were in the middle of a  field. The farmer, his adult son and their Black Lab came over and we walked the fields so we understood each other and how it would go.  I have some little trees and some brush piles to move . I will get good grazing fields and he will get some crops. I trust him and I feel he will help me make this a better farm. This seems good. I have been using Organic practices and supplies. But next year I will be checked as a part of his farm.  So this is a big deal for me.

 With the short spring, I am raising transplants for the garden. So that is ok. The orchard is mowed, the trees are pruned and the apple tree buds are starting to form. The bees are flying when it is warm enough. I am feeding them, planting clover, and watching for flowers. Even with all the cold, the plants in the flower gardens are starting. I am raising a flock of organic chickens... next month when there is more grass and warm nights.

Ready, set, go!  I feel like I am running already!!!

Joy to all of you!