Sunday, February 10, 2019

Getting The Garden Ready

Today hubby went to work getting the garden ready for Spring planting. He moved the manure that had been composting for over a year to the garden.
Thankfully this was made much easier with the help of his bobcat! He piled it up in the garden and when done used the bobcat to spread it out.
Once that was done he hooked up the disk and turned it into the ground. A little damp but worked up pretty good. With rain coming in the next week it was a do now or who knows when it might get done.
My job was to open and close gates, wave my arms at wanna be escapees and rake the barn. Done!

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Meet The New Girls--Our Suffolk Sheep

Late yesterday evening we loaded up and headed to Walnut Cove, NC to pick up our new girls. I had put a deposit down on 2 Suffolk ewes a while back. My plan is to cross them with my Icelandic rams and see if I can get some faster growing lambs for meat.
                                                    Quince and Camellia
                                                   Not feeling photogenic today!

We left them on the trailer over night with hay and water. I wanted to put them in with a ram and see if they may possibly breed this late. Well that was a disaster of magnetic proportions. My over zealous young ram chased them to the point I became afraid something would happen to them. At one point one girl crashed into the fence stunning her severely. It took the better part of an hour of chasing rams away from the poor girls to get everyone separated again. I ended up putting my Icelandic ewes in the pasture with them to keep them company and help them settle in.
As of this afternoon all is well again in the sheep world.

Friday, February 8, 2019

Russian Pavlovskaya Chickens

A while back my brother in law decided he wanted some funky chickens. It just so happened a girl that purchased Kune Kune pigs from us raised all kind of poultry. She brought me several half grown pullets and I told her to bring him some of these crazy looking birds. We got them as chicks. It turned out a couple weren't the Pavlovskayas but he did end up with a pair. The Pavlovskaya is Russia's most ancient breed of chicken and they are pretty rare. His hen has stated laying and we hope to have chicks available this spring. She is setting right now but we aren't sure this batch will hatch.
We think they look like they have been to Mardi Gras!
 If interested in chicks contact us to reserve yours soon.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Playing In The Greenhouse

 Sis and Mom have been very busy in the greenhouse. They have already transplanted tomatoes,   spring broccoli and cabbage.
Today I got to join them and together we transplanted 3 flats of Chinese Red Celery and 4 flats of Purple Kohlrabi.
My brother in law built this nice set of grow lights. Sis uses these in addition to the ones in her basement to keep the tender seedlings warm until the weather levels out.
A very productive plant day!

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Warmth and Sunshine

Yet another lovely day. I hop and pray that mother nature does not play this roller coaster game to much! The quince and crocus are popping out.
There is still a lot of winter left and it's hard to tell the blueberries that!

Monday, February 4, 2019

Spring Pruning

It was a glorious day here on the homestead! Almost 70*! Just what I needed to sooth my cold winter soul.
I hurriedly got the must do inside things done. A couple of loads of laundry and bill paying. (BLUCK)

Then I was out to feed the cows hay and let the chickens out to forage. I checked the small winter plot we had planted but was very disappointed. It had gone in way too late and the few turnips of eating size were bitter. Thank goodness for sis's winter garden. From hers we are still harvesting greens, cabbage and broccoli.
Today was grape vine pruning day. I absolutely hate to prune. I have written about this before. It almost physically hurts to cut the vines back. My head knows it's for the best... my heart says Ow Ow Ow. Last year the grapes set a ton of fruit. Sadly because of the rain and humidity they rotted in the vines.
The vines before

After..

  A little moral support from Ziva and the rams!

Sunday, February 3, 2019

Icelandic Sheep For Sale

I am thinning my flock a little bit this year. One because I recently purchased 2 meat ewes to cross with my rams. Two to make more room for beef cattle and three I have so many fleeces waiting on me to process it's a bit overwhelming! I am keeping and retiring my old girls that are 9 and 10 years of age. I'm also keeping a few offspring of some of my favorites. If you are interested feel free to let me know! I am posting a few pics on the sheep page (link on the right). They are actually not very good since the girls scatter every time I pic up my camera.   

Friday, February 1, 2019

Busy Rearranging

I recently acquired this old pie safe from a neighbor. It was originally his grandmother's. My intent was to store some of my cast iron in it by it is a little too fragile for that. Instead I opted to store empty jars and onions, potatoes and garlic in the top. The bottom now holds all my herbs that I add to my soap.
Since the veggies used to live on top of the old wood cook stove we have that used to belong to my husband's great grandmother that made room for all my cast iron. What a pleasure to not have to plow through stacks of pans to find the one I need!