Sunday, January 4, 2015

Start The Seeds

It's time to start the seeds.
Low overnight temps of 14 degrees are expected in our neck of the woods this week. 

Start the seeds.

Because starting seeds is not about the temperature. It is about day lengths and...

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Anthropology of Lettuce

Red Romaine
The fall vegetables are in various stages of their life cycles.  A closer study will yield a wealth of information for gardeners of every level.  Don't be intimidated.  Fall vegetables are hard to kill.  This information is only going to fine-tune your garden.  For simplicity's sake they will all be called lettuces.

These lettuces were planted about a month ago.  Remember post about fall seed suggestions?   These were some of the same varieties that supported my garden center each fall and were sold wholesale as bedding plants in Charleston.  If you bought watercress bedding plants from Abide-A-While, Hyams or Cross Seed in Charleston, they came from my greenhouse.

A few differences in technique have slowed the lettuce development in the non-professional world.  Here 'ya go:

Saturday, September 27, 2014

The Farm Is Possessed

I can see David Bowie in the kale: It's the Ziggy Stardust David Bowie, with the spiked hair:

Friday, August 22, 2014

Leek Haiku

Leeks runneth over. 
Leeks make soup in cold weather.
Leek seeds are on sale.

Sometimes things fall into place and motivation sprouts.  Stringy, little, pale sprouts of motivation.

Other sprouts get picked off by the chickens before they even break ground.  So I took the seed trays to the 'burb and put them on the patio.  The no-chicken patio.  The boys set up the little greenhouse that I still can't figure out a use for, but it's cute.  And I went on the internet to order a packet of red romaine seeds.

$45 dollars and four days later...

Monday, July 28, 2014

Chicken Saga Continues

The chickens spend their nights in a dog crate in the kitchen of the farmhouse.  Only three chickens remain.  We don't know what's been killing them. They may have multiple predators. 

Last night, we were going to have a relaxing night of camping at the farmhouse. The farmhouse is a lot like a cabin.

After snacks, some 3DS games and reading we hit the hay about 11:30.
The chickens started sneezing around 1:15.

I thought about sleeping through it, but this wasn't our usual setting so I grabbed the phone and went to check it out.

The cat was lurking in front of the chicken cage and I hate to admit this, but it looked like he had disembowelled a rabbit there.  I really thought about going back to bed.  It looked to be a big rabbit.  Human size?  Something made me want a closer look. It. Was. A. Snake.

In the kitchen.  Sorry I didn't...

Monday, July 7, 2014

One Little, Two Little, Three Little...Leeks

The Leeks today.
It happens to the best of us... when we don't do the proper research.

Leeks are biennial.   Oh the harbinger of lost opportunities:  the Leek.

Sadly, I have no pictures of the leeks.  Guess why?

The story is one of persistence, hard work and sacrifice.  The leeks' persistence, hard work and sacrifice.

Since it is the very hottest part of the summer and the tv networks air their old Christmas specials, I'll do the same.  (Am I the only one who gets a mild panic attack when John Lennon sings, "Another year over.  What have you done?"  For crying out loud man, get off my case!) 

To celebrate a couple cool mornings (64 this morning) let's discuss leeks.  Leeks are a winter crop.  So call this planning and pretend it proves that we have it all together.  The seeds also might be on clearance since leeks are completely out of season.

The leeks we tried...

Sunday, July 6, 2014

"You can eat WHATEVER YOU WANT!"

Some things are bigger than us.
Personal rant:
Here's what is rubbing me raw:  Homeschooling.  It's certainly not for everyone but I don't understand the vitriol people spew when the subject comes up.

I did a quick Google to see if there is a reality tv show about homeschooling and found this blog where so many of the comments were hateful and conformist.  Today I hit angry reviews of this homeschooling book I really like.

Control issues?  Personal insecurities projected onto others?  Just take what you like and leave the rest.
I think a glimpse into our lives would help people to quit asking me, "Are you going to homeschool again this year?"  Curiosity is probably the root of the question but it chips away at my already fragile uncertainly.  Any homeschool parent who isn't conceited hears: "So, are you keeping your kids chained to the furnace again this year?"

It is a giant, Costco size can of worms with no bottom.  I cried when I filled out the forms to take them out of school.  It is so impossibly hard to do something so unconventional without training and so much is at stake.  But it has worked better than I ever imagined it would and...