Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Two in one day

This is about two weeks later  then the last post. Squash and Kale.

Here is a picture of the newest member of the clan. She is a stray our neighbor  found the other day and we took her in.

Green beans and Beets

Tomato's and more Squash.

Bib lettuce


And Sookie trying her hand at gardening

Ellie showing her the finner points taking a dust bath

A volunteer Potato in the compost that I will have to transplant...

And some melons and more squash that have to be moved soon.

Here is another volunteer in the compost. Any body know what it is?

Sookie says "it's Miller Time"

And I have to agree with her!

Wordless Wednesday

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The free wood that is used to make the box for each raised bed

Rosemary and a few Tomato's planted

Volunteer squash

More squash

One of two pear trees on the place. No fruit this year.

Leaves ready to go into the worm beds.

No trees on my place, so I pick them up bagged at curb side.

Use this to shred them before wetting them down....And

Placed in the bed with the worms.

This is the bed that I set up last year and it looked like the one above back then. But its ready to be harvested and sorted.

A volunteer squash that made it into a pot.

Four additional beds ready for planting

Saturday, May 14, 2011

No Pictures, But lots of news!

Sorry it has been awhile, but major computer problems have kept me from making any post as of late. Got a virus and it killed my system and it took an act of God to get rid of it! And its still not right, and I can't seem to be able to down load any of the pictures I have taken of the spring planting.
But I can sure write about it here!
We started seeds in the house under lights in late February and early March. And as the weather started to warm up, I started to construct the boxes we would use for raised beds. All the wood I used was free for the taking and I built 7 boxes (4' X 8' X 10"). And we put together our own growing medium to fill each one.
The mix consists of 2 parts shifted fill dirt, 1 part composted cow manure, one part top soil and 1/2 part worm casts (This is potent stuff!). After mixing this all by hand, it is loaded into the boxes until the level reaches the top. And then we plant!
I did not keep very good records this year, But I know we have 5 kinds of tomato's, 3 kinds of peppers, Green beans, Beets, Kohlrabi, Turnips, Kale, Broccoli and 3 kinds of Squash.
The Squash is the funny part of this years garden! Back around Christmas I fead two rotten Pumpkin's to the worms I had in the house and they went through it like crazy! But they left the seeds alone and as the temps started to go up, the seed germinated right in the worm bed! We ended up with over 50 starter plants and have transplanted then throughout the garden area. Some in the raised beds and some in the area around the beds.
And speaking of  worms! They did realy well through the winter. I kept them suplied with food material ( Kitchen scraps, Horse manure and cut grass) and bedding material (sherdded leaves, newprint, cardboard and cut grass). This past week I built them a second box and sorted out as meny of the worms (there is no way I got all of them out of the casts!) as I could and harvested eight 5 - gallon buckets of casts out of half of the first bed. The way I did this is two weeks before I wanted too harvest, I placed two buckets of composted hourse manure in one end of the bed. This being the only food sourse, the worms migrated to that end of the box. And last week I started shifting the material I shoveled out of the bed. I put it all through a home made 1/4" shifting box I made and picked out the worms I could see and placed them in the new bed. They seem to be settling in quite well.
But back to the garden. Tomatoes and squash have flowers and some fruit starting to show and thoes seeds we dirctly planted are starting to push up thrugh the soil.
Monday I will be putting together another box. It will be somewhat bigger then the others. At 8' X 8' X 10" and will be use to plant Watermellon and Cantilope.
I have been doing a lot of reading about Hoop House's and how you can use them to extened the growing season for fall crops. I think that will be my next project to tackle.
Oh, and I have two whole Red Pears growing on the pear tree this year! We got a heavy frost right after the trees went into bloom and one of the trees blooms were killed and the other has only been able to produce the two. O'well, the trials of a Homesteader!
Talk to you later.