Saturday, March 31, 2012

Farmers' Market

I went up to Denver Urban Homesteader's farmers' market today planning to check in on the availability of 1/2 a pig this October. The farm I wish to purchase from also raises meat and dairy goats - tomorrow we will be having a goat roast for dinner (not sure as of yet how to properly cook one.)

A few booths farther on I found the tomato seeds Juju had been wanting. Starting in January I had driven to a half dozen or so independent garden centers and had not found these. We settled for Gold Medal. The CSA who sold them to me had saved them from last year's harvest. That makes them very cool in Juju's mind.

Lazy days

My minor bike accident (read - right hand in a splint and scraped up leg) has left me off work this weekend. Which would be great except for this whole injury thing. The splint is the size of an oven mitt and gardening (as well as dish washing woo hoo) are out of the question. Of course my garden orders came in this week (Damn you Murphy!)

On the upside the girls and I walked to the history museum for dairy days. We tried fresh butter and farm cheese and saw the baby lambs. Juju liked the yogurt cheese best. And Mesha the ice cream.

After I did a little grocery shopping the girls made their own ice cream - sweetened with hot cocoa mix. We have one of those little balls that make a pint - just the right amount so they could have milkshakes with dinner.

cherry tree

Last year for mothers' day I received this lovely tree with 4 types of cherries on it. Two are blooming now.

The girls got it at Costco, and I have heard that they have fruited in the first year for other people.

My fingers are crossed.

Monday, March 26, 2012


It is hot under the lights - and we forgot to water
Lost all but one Super snow white cherry, 1/2 the Pinot noir peppers, 1/2 the Prescott melons and at least one of everything else.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

This is for the birds

Juju's chicks are getting bigger. They seem to be happy in the borrowed chicken tractor, but come the end of the month they will need to be integrated with the other 4 birds in our little flock. With this in mind I caught Sonja (no easy thing that) and stuck her in with the pullets. The NHR is the same size as our flighty bantam hen. To say she was unhappy with the move is an understatement. I should have remembered that the Blue Andalusians are foragers and hate to be contained. She spent her time walking the edges of the pen (I could almost imaging her with a tin cup dragging along the metal) - much to the distress of the 2 pullets. After work I opened the coop part of the tractor to check for an egg and she was out like a shot. After a short chase around the yard she headed for the main coop trying to force her way through the wire enclosure. I caught her there and - with her indignantly squawking - put her back with the other hens.

Then I went to check on the quail. I had some greens and opened the door to put them in. And one of the females flew out. The quail have been pretty content in their hutch so I think this action surprised them as much as me. Ivan was immediately on her tail, laying in the new spring greenery waiting for a chance to pounce. Between him and a stick I gently herded her into a wire cage - which allowed me to catch her easily (I learned a thing or two after last year's quail breaks) She was soon back in with the rest of her covey (?).

I went in and had a beer.

Saturday, March 17, 2012


The cilantro that I planted last fall had just started growing when the killing frost came. But it survived and is putting out new growth. Neither snow nor rain nor hail nor gloom of night stays these stalwart plants. Maybe they should apply at the post office.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Then there were 6

We said our goodbyes to Heather and Pippa today. After a short time on Craigslist (like 3 minutes) a woman was on her way to pick them up. The ad opened with Our neighbors are not thrilled with the . . . vocal exuberance of these 2 hens. Yeah, they were loud.

We are sorry to see them go, but with Juju's chicks ready to move in by the end of the month when the meat chicks get here, and the Frizzles a week later, we will have more than enough poultry. Plus the money from the sale went to a second plot in the P-Patch.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Mesha Appleseed

Mesha has been wanting to plant an apple tree from seed for awhile now.

Regular apple trees are grafts (clones) of a parent plant on a rootstock. The rootstock gives it size and hardiness and the graft gives you the type of apple.

Planting from seed is not so exact. Each seed in an apple can produce a different apple type, none of which are likely to be the parent. Many chances is that you will end up with a crabapple which is used in many orchards as a pollinator.

But when I saw this sprout inside the Pink Lady I was cutting up for lunch yesterday I saw our chance.

So before school today Mesha potted it up and put it in the garden window.

I am quite sure she will be checking it daily for progress.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Text to Come

Juju wants to write about her chicks' new home, so just pictures for now.

Friday, March 9, 2012

deja vu

Our main water drain clogged last night. The plumber is here now, but dishes need to be done before work.

As some of you know, back in the early days of our marriage we lived partially off the grid, and for a short period of time completely off. Washing dishes in 2 buckets is not so bad - I am just happy I did not have to heat the water on the woodstove first. We use eco-friendly soap so when I was done I poured it in the landscaping. Done deal.

Anyway this is the 3rd time in the 2 years we have lived here that we have had the plumbing snaked from either tree roots or decaying iron pipe. There has got to be a better way - that isn't illegal or against code or does not involve redoing the entire system on our dollar.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

new reading

I just finished reading Off the Grid by Nick Rosen. (I picked up my copy at the local Costco along with How to Survive the end of the World as we Know it by James Wesley, Rawles - the irony of these purchases are not lost on me)