Where did summer go?
My last entry was back in June just as summer was getting a foothold around here. Then I looked up, and it was November. What happened to the the last 4 months? Well, if I think about it for a minute, I can figure out where it went.
We had a bumper crop of tomatoes in the high tunnel this year, easily over 200 pounds and I lost track of how many cucumbers came in but I canned 30 quarts of Dill pickles! The tomatoes went into the dehydrator, I canned some and made salsa, and even canned some juice for the first time. This beautiful specimen weighed in at a pound and a half!
The hot peppers were planted in 50 gallon hydroponic barrels and did very well!
June 28th saw the hatching of 7 duckies from an incubator I bought after losing all my ducks to a predator when we were on vacation. When we returned, I gathered up all the ducks eggs that were left and out of 11 eggs, 7 were viable. As luck would have it, I wound up with 3 hens and 4 drakes but they are great slug eaters and follow the geese around the yard like groupies!
The goat kids grew big fast and 4 of them went off to their new homes. Savannah will stay and become part of the dairy herd like her big sisters, Saffron and Soji, and her little brother, Mocha, is also staying. He was too runty to be weaned at four months and he’s Savannah’s best pal. I tried several times to fix his folded ears by flattening them out with different items but he and his sister play so hard, he kept knocking them loose, so his funny ears are forever, I guess. We made a couple YouTube videos showing our efforts!
Among various projects around the farm, my husband built a large woodshed for firewood and using cattle panels, pvc hoops, and pallets, he also built a huge shelter for the goats to get out of the weather. It’s over 20 feet long and we put a tarp over it. It served wonderfully as shade over the last few months and now is a dry cozy respite from the fall rains. I also tried sprouting fodder for the first time. It worked so well, I will start early next year and keep a constant supply of sprouted grains (barley, oats, wheat, etc) for the poultry. It was as easy as soaking them overnight, then spreading them on trays and watering twice a day. In 7 days the first tray was ready so I served it up and watched them go crazy!
I also spent all summer making tons of cheese, as well as butter and, of course, soap! As we’re harvesting the last of the tomatoes and picking all the winter squash and putting the garden to bed, I am already planning and figuring out what I want to do next year. We may or may not be here on this property, but that is a subject for another time as there are many things to work out. Wishing you a fabulous fall!