Monday, April 28, 2008

Working the dessert off mah butt

I am sooo sore today. We spent a couple of hours in the garden yesterday; dh was there longer than that, but the boys and I helped a good bit. I did most of the hand-weeding. Dh did some weeding by soil-turning, and planted potatoes. The boys weeded some and helped mulch the garlic.
Here they are behind the garlic bed:And here are some of the mulched garlic (the hardy ones that survived the flooding, and the rabbits' nibbling - the rabbits bite off a piece and realize they don't like it, and then just leave a mess on the ground. Then, they return the next day, having forgotten they don't like garlic and do the same thing again. Darn rabbits). They are still young, small plants, not to be harvested until late summer:

Our apples trees are blooming in full now:
One of the strawberry beds (I believe we have 3 or 4 of them) looks a bit better after I weeded it. You couldn't even see the strawberry plants before with chickweed and other stuff choking it. A close up of one of the strawberry plants:Last fall, when we should have been tidying up some of the garden plots - the ones that weren't growing fall and winter crops - we were a bit swamped with other things (dh's becoming chair of his department, moving his dad to our town, my sister visiting - she was a big help, not a hindrance, though - and our homeschooling activities picking up). One of the things that should have been taken out was the Red Russian Kale, which is now flowering. Kind of pretty, isn't it? It was Ds#2's chosen plant from a couple of years back.The asparagus are starting to poke up. I am so excited! I just love asparagus. Luckily, Cascadian Farm has very tasty frozen packages of asparagus that we resort to in the winter, but nothing beats your own straight (or crooked!) from the garden.Inside the greenhouse, things are growing nicely. The lettuce, spinach, and gai lan (I think...I always get those mixed up with choi sum) are almost ready to eat. There are other things growing in there too, such as green beans, and I forget what else.Dh grows a mix of lettuce, and if I weren't such a flake, I'd remember more than just the Oak Leaf variety. I'm pretty sure dh grows mizuna. I'd also like him to start growing arugula; I'm very fond of the slight bitterness of arugula. On the north side of the greenhouse is where dh has a platform for some of the seedlings. The different varieties of onion are in the front (I think he's growing copra and candy; not sure what else), and we also have some celery and peppers (sweet and hot). We bought a chard plant the other day, and friends bought us a few more peppers. A few miscellaneous photos from around the's a view of our house, dog in the foreground, looking up from the flat area of the property:Close-up of Gali (anyone with boys under the age of 13 will likely know that she is named after the Bionicle Toa of Water) with her frisbee:The chickens roam around inside their electric-fenced area. The taller triangle is their movable chicken tractor (that dh designed and built about 6 years ago), and the smaller A-frame is the dog house, which the chickens use for extra shade. We should maybe call it the chicken gazebo instead. The electric fence system is great because we can move them around to new patches of grass so they have fresh grass to eat and so no terrible stench builds up.And here are some of the chickens, including big old Nick, the sweetest, gentlest, and stupidest rooster on the face of the planet. The other black chickens in the photo are australorps (Blackberry, Licorice, and Stubby) and a black star (Gaia). The gray/white one (Hypatia; ds#1 picked the name) is a mix of Ameracauna and something else that we're not sure of. Last but not least, here are some free trees (from joining National Arbor Day Foundation) that dh potted up to plant later.I think I'm going to have to lay off weeding for a couple of days while my muscles recuperate. I am such a wimp!

"To accomplish great things, we must dream as well as act." ~ Anatole France (1844 - 1924)