Sunday, July 29, 2007

Plastic Garden Progress

No one would believe it less than I: the plastic squash garden has taken off! I am picking lots of summer squash; the pink banana winter squash is two feet long and still growing; I've got bags and bags of cucumber and watermelons are forming nicely.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

The Queen of Blackberries

I am the Queen of Blackberries. I've got the scars to prove it.

It has been cool and rainy for several days. This is a blessing, but I scurry to take advantage of it and don't know what to do first: weed, pick blackberries before they're gone, clean out barns...

As a result, I overdo.

This morning, I'll pick blackberries first in order to stockpile as much as possible in the freezer. I've made the first batch of wine, which will be transferred to a large carboy to continue fermentation. Once things calm down, I'll be taking gallon bags of berries out of the freezer and making more.

What I don't pick shrivel and dry up. This is a window of opportunity which will soon close. The berries just won't be here in a week, a month...

The sopranos are doing great. They were surgically castrated on Tuesday and are just fine. They'll be tenors one day, but never basses.

Their care and feeding, however, takes up a lot of each day. When it's dry, we go for a walk up and down hills. Well, it's a little hard to walk without tripping with three little guys keeping close to my ankles. We'll need to make a gradual transition to the herd so that eventually they can go to the big barn.

Dinky cow has a new little heifer.

There are lots of cucumbers and tasty green tint patty pan squash to pick. I picked the first zucchini. Watermelons and pink banana squash are forming. The pink banana squash looks like an overlarge yellow summer squash at this point, but I know it's a winter squash. I wish someone would let me know how to tell when it's ready to pick. Maybe you go by the stem as in other winter squash -- when it comes away from the fruit, it's ready.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Promised Pictures

The plastic garden is coming along. I actually picked a couple of patti pan squashes. Pink banana squash is forming. The cucumbers have started to produce. I picked the first two yesterday. About six little red tomatoes have been consumed and even beans have come to fruition. The motion sensor light is working for the deer, but something is eating the new shoots on the bean plants coming up. I thought you might also like to see how nice the daylilies are this year:

Saturday, July 14, 2007


When your own mother calls to see if you're okay -- she reads this blog periodically to see what I'm doing -- it's time to update.

Life since the birth of the three sopranos has been very, very busy. Add to the fact that the blackberries are ready for picking now and the garden is in need of reclamation (It's a jungle out there, disorder and confusion everywhere...), three bottle feedings a day, each consisting of 8 oz. milk and 8 oz. water for each of three, and it really adds up.

That's 3 X 6 bottles = 18 bottles a day.
18 X 7 days = 126 bottles a week.
126 X 4 weeks = 504 bottles a month.

This will go on for at least two, maybe three months.

Momma goat is trying hard to get up, but still can't quite do it. She won't be able to make milk at any rate. In order to get all the milk for all those bottles, I must milk three other goats first thing in the morning every morning.

This is cutting into my time to do everything else. I find myself coming in from the barn at 10 p.m. some days and am totally sleep deprived, as I get up at 5:30 a.m.

Here's a flight of fancy: people just LOVE to bottle feed little goats. If I were to charge, say $5.00 for a person to give a kid a bottle, that would be 18 X $5 = $91.00 a day.
$91 X 7 = $630.00 a week! I obviously need to start a petting farm. I also obviously need to get more sleep.
Nevertheless, if you know anyone who would really like to experience bottle feeding a goat kid, let me know.

As far as the plastic garden, I tried to take a picture of some of the squash today and got a message on my palm pilot telling me that the battery is low. It's recharging as I type.

I'll get some photos up tomorrow if the weather be good.