Thursday, July 2, 2015

First fruit, and ferocious weather.

Again I'm going to start with something I'm excited about just because it's good to see more than it shows anything we've done in particular. The first raspberry I've seen start to ripen on our property. I'm going to be keeping an eye on it to try to get it when it's fully ripe before the birds get it, so I can give it to the Lady of the House. It also means that we're about to be a bit busy paying attention to make sure we get as much of the ripening fruit around the yard as we can. Strawberries, blackberries, and raspberries are what we have around. If we let them sit not only are they going to get eaten, they're going to attract bears which we don't want for obvious reasons.

Bears are going to be come more and more of a thing we want to avoid attracting as our fruit trees start to bear fruit in the future. Right now we still only have one that's showing leaves, but the others are probably just having to spend more energy rooting. Even if they don't all make it, we'll just keep planting more fruit trees. We remember from early on when we moved in planting a bunch of tiny saplings of flowering trees, and thinking they were all dead. Even a few of the ones we were sure were dead have come roaring back to life a couple years later, so patience is the name of the game. That and weeding. Fortunately most of the weeding can go to the rabbits. Below you can see that the Lady of the House has been keeping busy keeping the asparagus bed clear. I need to take the sickle to the weeds off to the left and feed those to the rabbits. It's been tough to keep up on things with the amount of rain we've been getting lately. We've honestly been having a crazy amount of rain. The problem is that it's been coming in torrential downpours which messes up the ground fairly badly, especially on our nemesis the driveway. It's also making the fact that we don't have mulch this year more of a problem than it would have been most years. In the future we're just going to have to make sure we have mulch. Maybe next year we'll be able to afford a truck load of mulch, mulch the gardens, and the paths between the beds to keep the weeds down between beds. I feel it would be much easier.
One of the things that's really amazing to me is just how fast some things can grow. Especially in contrast to things like the asparagus and fruit trees. Right shows the garlic bed which is doing well despite the rain battering the garlic greens to the ground repeatedly. The Lady of the House had the time to plant some bean plants along the top edge of the garlic beds a couple weeks ago, and they're shooting up! I'm going to have to make sure that I get trellising up for it this weekend. I'm going to be using cattle panel secured to some of the T posts, both salvaged from the farm that I helped pull down. I'm going to have to pull together $25 to get a fence post pounder so I don't have to get up on a ladder to drive the posts once they get to the point they stop. I'm also probably going to have to buy a fence post puller because I don't want to dig big holes to get posts out of the ground when they aren't needed in place in the long run.
As I mentioned, rain has been crazy lately so I haven't been getting anything done on the coop because if it's raining or night time I can't really be out there with power tools, and don't want to be out there in general. The good news is that inside the coop is nice and dry after serious downpours dumping crazy amounts of water in short periods of time. I need to get up on the roof and use some clear silicone roofing caulk on the seams and the screw holes, but that was going to be true either way.  The fact that there is only one place that wasn't the product of water blowing in through the unfinished walls that had any water on it makes me feel good about the work we have done on this so far. We need to finish this up pronto though, because we have the good fortunate to have an opportunity come our way again! A friend of ours who provided us with the eggs in our incubator has a line on a couple of turkey poults that are excess. We're going to take them in, but to do so we need a place to put them. In this case, they'll probably just go into the partially done coop for now, until we can trust them to stick around. By the time they can be trusted to do that, I'm going to have to make sure that I have a roosting shelter for them. Fortunately a roosting shelter for turkeys is easy to make, and will have plenty of use in general, whether or not we have turkeys again in the future.
Finally, we're going to finally be rebreeding the rabbits this weekend. I held off because I realized that while the Lady of the House and I are going to be on vacation, I don't want them having kits, or having new kits on the ground. It seems unfair to the house sitter to have to handle the only complex part of rabbit life when I can with just a little planning avoid that for them. Having fewer kits in the hutch was a little surprising for the Lady of the House and me, even though we knew we'd sold a couple kits. It's silly to not remember, but after expecting a certain number of kits in there for a while, seeing two less we both had the "Where are the missing two" reaction first. It's easy to settle into patterns with the livestock, and to an extent that's good. When you're tired, it's hard to break out of!

This weekend we're going to hopefully get a lot more done, and be able to show you on Tuesday. Enjoy your 4th of July, whether you are in the USA, and it's Independence day, or you are elsewhere and it is just another day for you.

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