Saturday, June 18, 2011

Today, John and Maggie vended at the Downtown DES Moines farmer's market, and had a wonderful time as always!

Donna womaned the shop, and nearly died of boredom (I think) labelling and shrink-wrapping tons of products. Note Abby, faithful canine companion.

The sweetgrass looks wonderful! Nearly ready for harvest.

And, some gratuitous kitteh cuteness. Leo is of two Persians living on the farm, he is so dirty we call him "pigpen" he just adores playing in water and then "helping" in the garden. He was recently adopted from the local shelter, and is an absolute sweetheart.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Just another June day

Hay is really heavy. Also unwieldy, and scratchy. Mom and I loaded 60 bales of hay into the barn this morning, stacking it way over our heads. Not too shabby for a couple of broads. There's 120 bales there now; we need another 100+ to see the minis through 7 months of pastureless winter.

I love my still. The weather was actually cooperating today (not too windy, not raining), but I only thought of starting it up... When it was too late. *sigh*

This is Peter, a cat we fostered as a kitten. We adopted him and his mom from the local shelter. This picture of him is notable, becaue his mouth is closed. Most picture of him show him with his mouth open, mid-meow. Peter REALLY likes to talk.

Today we packed orders, and made a bunch of bath salt samples to give away at farmers market tomorrow.

Also John fixed the mower, and mom did a bunch of mowing. She pulled a bunch of weeds today too.

And then we packed farmwagon for market! We are hoping for a really great market tomorrow :)

Today began with some kitty lovin's. These are barn babies, caught last week, along with their feral momma. Momma got spayed and is safely back in her barn, happy and healthy. Now we are making the kittens friendly; they'll be spayed/neutered, and adopted out.

Donna's rose garden by the house looks spectacular!

And the lavender is starting to bloom already! A bit early this year. It never grows very well for us, but we have a few nice bushes that overwintered well.

Here's a photo of one of Maggie's lasagna beds, in the early phases. I take big cardboard boxes (of which we get many!) and flatten them, and lay them in thick layers on the ground. On top, we pile all kinds of organic matter: old hay, weeds, compost, trimmings, horse manure,leaves, bedding from Maggie's rabbit's litterbox. I usually am working on the beds to be planted next year, but you can also plant directly into it the first year. The soil quality is wonderful, no tilling is involved, and weeds are minimal.

Here's another project in the works: mulching around all our fruit trees (three peach, one plum, two pears and two apples) and planting perennial herbs and flowers around the bases. This will provide extra food for our bees, and make orchard mowing and maintenance much easier.

This is Beatrice, our first bee hive! She is doing well... Currently the Beatrices are enjoying the roses, lavender, and alexander. We installed two new hives on local farms a few days ago. Catherine is at Picket Fence Creamery, and Diana is at Raccoon Forks Farm in Redfield.

And last but certainly not least, we had a major Barn Cleaning Event today! Removing junk, sorting, and reorganizing. A very dirty dusty job (achoo!) but it's more spacious and clean now!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Test, test, 123 test

Trying out a new app that allows me to blog with my phone. (it's a little weird to even say that, right? What has technology become!). If this works. I'll be much better able to keep the blog updated and fresh!!

Shown here, btw, are some of our first springtime harvests - fresh strawberries and garlic scapes, picked fresh last Saturday. (I picked gooseberries as well, but neglected to get them in the photo).