The original plan: Head to the farm, come back Monday or Wednesday. The new plan: Go to the farm, come back ??? We decided that going home in the middle of the week, just to turn around and return on Friday was just silly. So we are farm bound until at least Sunday. I’ll be traveling into town a few times (no, I did not pack enough supplies for 10 days) and our daughter will be joining us for one night later this week.
This plan suits me just fine. Not only do we get to wake up without hearing anything but the birds singing and the breeze rustling the leaves, but it gives me so much more time to bring the garden back up to speed after my post-surgery hiatus.
As for the garden, here’s what is currently doing well: Tomatoes, peppers, onions, zucchini, peanuts (we’re giving it a shot!), turnips, summer squash, potatoes, cantaloupe and watermelon. I have to keep ahead of the squash bugs by removing the eggs from the zucchini and squash leaves, but so far…so good. I have to plant some more lettuce. It all bolted when the hot weather arrived.
Doing so-so: Most of the beans, red beets and corn. We are battling grasshoppers like crazy! Due to the mild winter, they are seriously…everywhere. We are spraying Neem oil and homemade garlic spray to combat them. We’re winning about half of the time. Not sure what is going on the with corn, but it is very sporadic and mostly still small. We were trying new heirloom varieties, but we may go back to our old standy next year.
Epic Fail: Kohlrabi and Rutabaga. The grasshoppers and cabbage worms have destroyed them. I’m leaving them in their beds and not treating them. I’m using those two beds as my sacrificial veggies in the hopes that the grasshoppers will just feed there. 😦
During my breaks from the garden, I’m making mulch out of newspaper. Shredder? We don’t need no stinkin’ shredder! As I’m reading the latest on Facebook or the blog world, I simply cut about 15 notches in two folded sections of a newspaper, then rip at the notches. I used to think I needed a shredder. Then I bought one. I took it back two days later. It jammed up all the time and it was just something else I needed to find a place for. Besides, with a shredder, you don’t get to pretend you’re the strongest woman on the planet as you effortlessly rip volumes of newspapers apart. It takes no time at all to fill a small laundry basket (I timed it…4 minutes) and by that time, I’m up on some current events, had a sip of cold iced tea and it’s back out to the garden!
Wild plants: We are in a weird lull with the black raspberries. We were able to harvest three (really two and a half) times. Now, we wait. There’s a ton that are somewhere between green and red. I’m hoping this heat wave ripens them soon. Black walnuts are getting bigger and we may be able to harvest a few chestnuts this year. (My brother-in-law gifted my husband with three trees, and they are growing nicely). We also continue to dine on the wild purslane and lamb’s quarters. We will have no apples this year due to a cold snap at a most crucial time. That saddens me. On a better note, the elderberry bushes are transforming from flowers to berries.
And for some random farm fun, here are a few pictures that I took in the last few days:
This fella was a tad too close to the garden for my liking. Needless to say, my husband has declared war.
A picture of my favorite tree as a child. Imagine how fun it was to climb with that wonderful trunk!
As we were sitting on the glider one night, watching a doe feed near the pond, our Sadie was watching my husband feed. Intently. hahaha