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Sunday, May 8, 2011

Progress in Preparedness

Apologies for the time lapse, but sometimes life just happens, you know?

Gardens now blooming and setting veggies. I watch them grow daily, chanting " I will not pick yet. I will not pick yet." Those baby squash are looking mighty tasty!
The little green peppers are whispering my name. I must not pick yet!

Scarlet Emperor runner beans are Italian type green beans

Pretty blossoms, but no beans yet.

The drought has seriously affected the dewberries that survived the herbicide applied by the electric company. We'll probably get a handful of berries this year compared to the bounty last year. Have to start watering the pear trees before the fruit drops off.

Last year's dewberry jam burbling away

 I have canning jars waiting to fill with jams and preserves for those emergency shelves. Bought 32 pounds of strawberries to take up some of the slack left by the dewberries. Hubby and I are starting jam production tomorrow.

Things are so dry I'm finding it hard find wild green feed to cut for the rabbits. Have to plant more swiss chard to make up the diffference. Fifty rabbits can eat a LOT of rabbit food-- more than a pound an animal per week with small amounts of greens and handsfulls of hay to supplement. Today two disappointing does will go to the freezer, but none of the younger ones are big enough to process yet. The next group needs another month of growth to qualify as fryers.

Art's been feeding bunny poo to the wild grape vines we're culturing. They've taken off hugely with the extra food and water. We'll actually get some grapes this year.

 He visits the fig trees with buckets of poo and water,too. If he isnt tired enough after that, he hauls compost, and scoops it out into the new raised beds.After that, strewing rabbit poo around established plants gives them a boost in growth and productivity. Bunny poo is nature's time release fertilizer, but he also mixes it into buckets of water for bunny poo tea to water with. 50 bunnies make a lot of poo! Therefore Art makes lots of compost, too.

Hangman and brother-in-Law, Dan,brought another load of dirt. I kid him that it'll take forever if he is going to move his family up here one cubic yard at a time. He'd offered me a choice of dirt or another dead fridgie -- so hard to choose! Two of the fridgies at the shooting range moved up to the garden line-up, so the load of dirt won. A pair of young breeding rabbits left with Dan to form the foundation of his rabbit empire. Two less for us to feed, and cash to buy more rabbit chow.

Matthew and Hangman installed a water meter (found by Mr. H.) for the spigot leading to the gardens and the animal area. Now we have an accurate measure of the water --for farm use only-- to take off on our taxes.

Self sufficiency on the increase,gardens going, canning season beginning, good friends got our back, family pitching in: life is good. Hate to be greedy, but how about some more rain? Please?

1 comment:

  1. O NOOOOOOOOOO HELENE I AM SO SORRY!!!! Your reply to my SATS tests came as spam, I clicked THIS IS NOT SPAM butoon but it disappeared before I could post it xx
    Your garden looks amazing!!! If it'll help -- I can post you all the dandelions that keep popping up in my lawn - our rabbit used to love em!!! xx