Since we have been known to fall off the blogging face of the planet when planting and harvest season hits (not to mention the baby arriving in June) we are going to try our best to do one big overview post of the week’s activities around the farm in photos to keep everyone up to date in the Life section on the blog. That way we can reserve the other categories for more of the “tutorial” posts if you will, and we’ll have a good schedule to remind ourselves to take pictures of the boys each week for y’all. This one is probably a bit extra long since we have lots to catch up on!
We hope you look forward to them!
A Week In The Life: March 4-10th
This week was an exciting one. We are, somewhat frantically, trying to keep up with all the preparations we need to have in place to jump into our growing season on April 1st. With (what appears to be) our last frost behind us we are scurrying around to get things started a bit early. With our order of 500 feet of row cover arriving last week we are going to try to beat the bugs this year.
It’s hard to see but the pear tree is already beginning to blossom.
I planted beets on the 5th and the 24th of February this year and we have had very poor germination with all the cold temperatures we have had. I tried covering them with plastic after the second planting and we have a handful of itsy bitsy seedlings popping up but that’s all.
You can tell in the above picture that we have been bringing in a lot of material for these garden beds this year. The left side of that bed is covered with a good 2-3 inches of well rotted horse manure and bedding. We have since covered that with tons of rich, mostly broken down wood chips.
We are absolutely loving our new trailer! It has made such a huge difference in how easy it is to get help bringing in materials even though we don’t have a truck. It’s also the perfect height for my wheelbarrow which means I can slowly unload it easily over the course of a week or two as I have the energy.
We have switched our original gardening bed’s orientation from east to west to north to south to match up with the other beds better. We will be connecting these two beds (as you can see with the new border logs) into one long bed with rows. After realizing that the far right bed (where the pen is in photo) didn’t get hardly any sun in summer and that it becomes water logged we have decided to let the ducks turn it into their play area.
The walking onions are all starting to come back! We are hopeful that this year they will really get established so we can harvest some.
The ducks are still doing great free ranging in the backyard all day.
They have turned the low area into a mud hole which they seem quite proud of.
One of the females has injured herself somehow and has what appears to be a fracture or severe sprain in her left ankle. We have been trying to keep her penned the last few days to let her rest but she is not happy about the situation. Unfortunately from what we have read there isn’t much we can do for her since it’s in her ankle joint other than try to keep her immobile for a while and try to let it heal. We are really hoping we don’t have to cull her from this as she is a sweetie.
We recently got 13 meat chickens! Out of desperation to get them out of my greenhouse for a while:
I let them out in the duck pen for the day this last week. We came to put them up and discovered that 4 of them had been attacked by some kind of predator through the pen. We were very sad and will be reinforcing their cage that Kevin is building currently with additional wire so this doesn’t happen again.
They were SO happy to be out in the sunshine though!
Our greenhouse (AKA over glorified cold frame) has been working quite well for us. It does drop to the outside temperature overnight as it’s not heated but with some christmas lights and extra plastic over our shelving units we have been successful at keeping some seedlings a few degrees warmer overnight. We have been starting all the seedlings in the house still as the greenhouse would be extremely expensive to keep warm enough. Next year we will probably use heat mats out here and Kevin is exploring some solar water heaters to provide free heat long term.
We added a second light to our seed starting setup inside to keep up with the volume we need to start this year:
Some of our fall crops are finally starting to wake up again:
And Broccoli. I finally got this front bed trimmed out with the old bricks too! Now our front yard doesn’t look quite so lopsided.
Saturday Kevin, Michael and Luke (Michael’s Brother) spent the morning and picked up two full trailer loads of bark chips and spread them all over the big garden bed:
We had the boys in for some biscuits and gravy after their efforts. I’ve been trying to perfect the homemade biscuit…..dozens of different tips and techniques have been tested so far which has resulted in a pretty darn good biscuit. But I’m not sure if it’s the “perfect” biscuit just yet so it will continue being tested this week in hopes of bringing y’all the best biscuit.
Sunday we decided to stay home from church (which of course turned out to be an amazing service) to try to catch up on the overdue chicken pen for Kevin and transplanting seedlings into the greenhouse for me. It was beautiful outside and we got so much done!
We took detailed shots of the whole building process of the pen so we can work up the plans to sell here on the blog for cheap. We are hoping we will be able to get Kevin’s dad to draw up some sweet plans in his design software so they will be super easy to follow along with too.
Kevin showing off the versatility of his door design:
Noah gets cuter and more expressive everyday. He really is a total ham. He has gotten too big for me to carry him with my growing belly so he has spent a lot of time this week chilling in his stroller in the yard with us.
He has been really into peek a boo this week….to the point of sometimes violently slapping himself in the face haha.
See you next week!