Over the fence chat for 5/6/01 to 5/12/01

greenspun.com : LUSENET : Beyond the Sidewalks : One Thread

Good Mornin' all!! What's everybody up to on this glorious day?! Ain't it amazin' what 10 hours of sleep will do your for your attitude!?

I'm waiting for the kids to come dragging in after their post prom blow-out. (I know nothing! Nothing, I tell you!) While I'm doing that, I'm agitating for the hubby to take me to town to buy some lattice for my grape arbor so we can get the darn thing in the air today. We're also in dire need of shoelaces and those little eraser thingies that you put on top of your pencils when you've worn the others out. I've really GOT to stop changing my mind on the garden plan! While we're at Wally-World, I'm going to walk him over to the computer display - picture Elmer Fudd here, with a gun at Bug's back. Now substitute a little plump woman for Elmer and a skinny balding guy for Bugs and you've got the picture! Oh yeah - we need a new tractor battery too, so that means a trip to Rural King. Hee-hee.....picture me rubbing my hands in glee! I've been lusting after this garden sprinkler shaped like a frog. Haven't got it yet....YET!

I've got a ton of other things to do today - built a portable chicken pen out of chicken wire and plastic water pipe yesterday, but can only put the chickens in it when we're home 'cause otherwise Hazard is walking around singing "Feels like chicken tonight!" Still got more garden to put out and those poor tomatoes are still waiting to be transplanted! And I'm sitting on my butt in front of the computer! No more! See you all later - Have a great day!

-- Anonymous, May 06, 2001


Ate a strawberry from the earliglows. Singular. It was darn good. Nick picked it and put it by the computer's mouse.He said he figured I'd find it there. And you all wonder why I tease HIM!

Getting close to the last of the asparagus,for this year.

Still no rain.We're over two weeks now without.Dam,dam,dam,dam,dam (trying to misbehave while Jim is away and that's the best I can come up with.) Dam.

-- Anonymous, May 06, 2001

I'm kind of pleased with myself, altho aching a bit in the back and legs from all that unaccustomed digging yesterday. You'd THINK that after a long winter of tossing snow, it wouldn't be a biggie. It must use different muscles or something. Why does it hurt in all the same places tho? It's beautiful out, and I'll be headed back outside anon, but first I have to catch the frog and put him in a pail. Today is Liberation Day for my spotted little hostage. He's been living here with me in a tank (altho a nice tank, with a little miniature waterfall, a stream, a swimming pool, rocks to sun on, frog moss to cool on, and all the crickets and wax worms he can eat) since late this winter when he was scooped up, still befuddled from hibernation, with a load of bait minnows and delivered to a bait shop locally. Fortunately, the man who runs it is a nice sort, who was keeping him in a bucket and trying to feed him worms, but when he heard about me, he gave the frog to me. So I've been enjoying his little froggie serenades in the evenings, and now it is time for him to go out and find some womenfolk and make more little froggies! So I'll take time out to walk him out to one of the local bog lakes away from highways, dogs, and kids, bid him a fond farewell, and hope for the best for him. I worry about the crashing frog populations worldwide and what it represents, I am even moreso worried about the disappearance of leopard frogs locally, and even if I wasn't, I just plain like frogs!! (bet you couldn't guess!)

I'm also pleased in that I got in 50 strawberry plants, all planted and looking smug, snug, and happily putting out new leaves already. Planted Jewel and Honeyone, and would like the next bed to try Sparkle and something else, but maybe not til next spring. It looks picture perfect!! I gave them a drink with a mild solution of Roots, and we had overcast and kind of mildly cool weather for days after transplanting, so I am hopeful for them.

Meanwhile, I prepared beds for tomatoes, leeks, shallots, cabbages, zucchini, and whatever carrots I can sneak in. I was estimating how much acreage I'd need to support my horses' carrot-habit and it looks like a half-acre or so devoted only to carrots would do it...like THAT is gonna happen. Oh well, I bought those two more apple trees, so I can reason that they're going to get the benefit of those too.

Oh drat, I should be getting those potatoes in too....we may still have frosts coming this spring, but they'll be okay underground. The raised beds have warmed up nicely. Guess I'd better stop talking about it and do it!

-- Anonymous, May 06, 2001

Speaking of sore...how is it that I'm sore from hoeing? Huh? Not even bending over much. Yikes. Time to start working out again!

Moved portable fencing, got goats moved back into the blackberries (Blackberry Fields Forever...not if I can help it) and cleaned the hen house. Reviewed my list of May "Things to Do" (yeah, still have some things left over from April...) and moved a few wheelbarrows of gravel (filling trenches.) My husband finished the cedar siding on the ram barn, so time to prime and paint pretty soon. I did take a look at my spinning wheels as I raced past them. *Sigh* one of these days... I think I'm going to sell my floor loom. Not using it. Anyway in W. Washington looking for one?

Hung up laundry (it actually got all-the-way dry today. Hooray!) Weeded strawberries (see above) spinach, and peas. My husband (I think I'll just call him "Mr. S" for "Mr. Sheepish") made about 6 doz. seed pots of sunflowers and has them under Lexan on a table under the big cherry tree. We will have sunflowers everywhere! He painted the French doors in the office and to our bedroom. Nice to be able to have the windows open! He also mowed the lawn (a blessing since I hate to do it and it takes three hours or so.)

I went to a church retreat in the mountains yesterday. Rained like you-know-what and we lost power for 1.5 hours. But it was still great.

Sheesh. Why am I telling you all of this?

Got an anniversary and a birthday coming up this week. Hooray! Mom is doing great. Going to a play next weekend. Laura, I think I have two fleeces that you might want. I'll just give them to you if you want. Have a great spring week everyone!!!

-- Anonymous, May 06, 2001

Feel bad for all you folks who aren't getting any rain; this is something I never experience here in western wisconsin. We've always had a heck of a time getting three or four dry days in a row in order to get in the hay. Our season is short but completely manic; I swear you CAN see the grass grow in May and June.

Said good-bye to three more cows and two little donks this weekend. Very sad but after I have my good cry, I feel a little lighter than before. Another step down my new road. Have been feeling strangely fatigued last few days though; hoping its psychogenic.

I ended up staying home from the May Day celebration. Partner and daughter and her boyfriend went. It was raining and I just dont care all that much for standing out in the cold rain, but they had fun. Its a beautiful festival, like a trip back to the sixties, lovely freaks everywhere......

We're all going to see the Dalai Lama on Tuesday night; very excited about it! They will apparently have very tight security to get in, since he's a head of state and has 'enemies'. There was such strong demand for his visit they added a third 'performance'. I'm expecting to garner some wonderful energy from being in his audience.

Its weird not doing the regular spring things this year: ordering and planting seeds, ordering and starting chicks, fixing fences and suchlike. Instead I'm cleaning out the terribly messy sheds and old house, painting and sprucing up so as to get the place ready to put on the market. And of course selling animals.

Blessings to all!

-- Anonymous, May 06, 2001

Oh, Mama, I had the opportunity to see and hear the Dalai Lama speak a few years ago. The security was there but unobtrusive. Unfortunately, I hardly heard a word he said. It was in the new Kohl Center (sports complex) at the U in Madison. I thought it was rotten sound system or aucustics, but it turned out to be due to his insistence on using only a lapel mike. He didn't want anything between him and the audience, so no mike on a stand. Maybe there was something wrong with the lapel system . . . .

Anyway, they taped it and showed it on local PBS later the same night, so I taped that and watched it, and finally heard what he had been saying! So be prepared, and if you have some sound enhancing device, take it! He is also a humorous gentleman!

We didn't get much rain for a couple of weeks, then about a week ago it started raining nearly every day and POW! everything has either started blooming or turned brilliant green.

-- Anonymous, May 06, 2001

Finally had a big thunderstorm last night with about an inch of rain. Onions, potaoes and strawberries will be happy. Peas are starting to climb, and the green beans are slowly emerging. Been using the drip irrigation every day for a week now on the tomatoes and eggplants.

We have enough stuff to take to market this week (spinach, chard, radishes, kale, eggs and baby chicks, but probably won't go because we're installing hardwood floors (I act as helper for our builder to keep costs down) and putting up a front porch.

Have to fix the mower! needs a new bearing. Mowed our orchard area using the brush hog this weekend. Scary, but no fatalities. Dressed all the trees with horse manure. Have fruit set on our 2 yr old golden delicious, arkansas black and stella cherries for the first time.

Must go and rescue the cold frame. The cover was off and all the peppers took the storm last night.

-- Anonymous, May 07, 2001

Just when I get to feeling like I've accomplished something I turn around and there's twenty more things to do...never ends does it???

Well at least the pullets have now moved OFF the front porch and out to their new home in the barn and they are much happier...so am I. Beans started popping up last week even tho it's been dry, dry, dry here. Every day I go to work and tell the weatherman "you said it would rain and it didn't..." he now runs and hides when he sees me coming.

Lucky me, I transplanted 30 tomato plants just in time to have them ripped to shreds by a 15-min dust storm with 45 mph winds. (I really must get a wind power system soon andmake use of all this wind on the prairie) Out of 30 plants I've lost 9 or 10 for sure. Grrr. Hope your tomatoes didn't get the same treatment Polly!

Well, time to get back at it...

-- Anonymous, May 07, 2001

Polly, I am glad I am not the only one that has tomatoes that need transplanting. We had a beautiful weekend and got lots done. Planted most of the 30 new blueberry bushes and got the mowing done. Still no rain, I have never had to water peas to get them to come up before. It will probably hold off until haying season.....we sure struggle to get it dryed and in. The fruit trees are all in bloom here and everywhere you look is something beautiful to see. Had some "surprise" goat kids last night. After the blizzard and before we noticed a tree down on the fence last year the buck got out and "got" his daugher...uuugggh. Until a few days ago I actually thought I was home free that she had not gotten bred. They are very cute twins with no obvious birth defects....so will decide later as to if I will keep the doe kid. Well, back out to work in the garden, lunch break over.

-- Anonymous, May 07, 2001

Hi All. A very productive weekend! Built hoophouse from cattle panel, 4 fence posts, and tarp. To store Daughter's furniture. Took about a half day. Turned out great!

Also set front property line on our new 20 acres. County has easement 50 feet from road centerline - now I know exactly where that is & will plant nothing there. We also put in the corner fencepost sets on boundary abutting neighbor's property. Corner posts braced with diagonals north-south and east-west. They are very strong.

It rained buckets Sunday eve - our eighth straight day with rain. Wish I could send some to dry areas. Lawn needs mowing, but it is too wet.

Much to do this week. I'll check back in a few days. Bye. Sandy

-- Anonymous, May 07, 2001

Just figured out it wasn't the hoeing that was making me sore. It was moving the gravel (did it again today!) Me and my D-1 (shovel) and the ol' wheelbarrow moved another 1/2 ton this afternoon. But I think I'm going to start another thread related to some of that. Had to get stuff done before it rains again. Got a church potluck tonight. Do you think they'll be serving pot? LOL

-- Anonymous, May 07, 2001

Ugh...I am stumping around on my two broken down ankles tonight. Too many hours on them and on concrete at the barn. After doing house cleaning, I went out in the garden and dibbled in leeks, about 4 dozen. I hope that they grow!! I've never planted leeks before, and I know they need a LONG season, but I am prepared to try and fight for 'em down to the wire with row covers, etc., in the fall in order to have my own potato & leek soup. They're beastly expensive at the grocery store, nearly $4 a lb! I've been having potato & scallion soup instead.

Then I planted the new apple trees, currant bushes & Jostaberry, but by that time it was getting dark out, and altho I've got a light in the garden that I can turn on, by that time I get to thinking I'd better go and take care of horses, all of whom had had a FUN day in the dirt (what, again!?! Every darn day!!!) so I was busy scraping mud and hair off them (still), applying bug sprays and creams, dressing a big old bark that Ostara got on her head somewhere, cleaning water buckets, refilling...

But at least I got the Sweet Sixteen apple planted in the ground, and the Ballerina type put into a pot until I can decide definitely on its final site so it won't get endangered. No rest for the wicked and all that.

-- Anonymous, May 08, 2001

Whoa,julie.I first thought you said you had two broken ankles.Whew! Glad I read it wrong.

I'm going to start a new thread on apples,since you got me interested!

Woo Hoo! Finally got some rain.Not much,but some.Got most of the tomatoes,the sweet potatoes,the second plantings of beans and some of my everlastings in before the rain.YEEHAAAAAAH!

Picked 6 strawberries last evening,they were mighty good! Love my strawberries too. The Earliglows beat the alpines even ,this year,so I believe I'll keep them as an early season one.

I used the gardenway seeder to do the beans this year.Finally had enough seed saved to do bedfulls of beans. Thaat made it go faster!

I have about a dozen varieties planted so far,I lost count.A few more to go in in a few weeks for the later harvest.And to isolate them for seed saving, by time. I'm starting to think about how many beans I'll have, to sit on the front porch and shell this winter.If it rains some more,that is.

-- Anonymous, May 08, 2001

Hey Sheepish, got a kick out of your D-1 !! My dad worked for Caterpillar for years, he'll like that one......

and as for this statement: afternoon. " Had to get stuff done before it rains again." Seems like when I lived in your area, that was a statement I used constantly!

And also....can I come to your church's potlucks? :)

-- Anonymous, May 08, 2001

We DID go to the potluck last night and it was fun! I always need an excuse to eat green jello! (yes, you are always welcome e-mamma!!)

It was our 19th anniversary last night (well, all day actually.) Mr. S. got me a 9-quart galvanized watering can for the event! I'll have to call Hallmark and tell them to update their Anniversary Gift Category list. As I recall, Year 15 is Sheep (they didn't know that either), one of the earlier ones was Power Tools, and now Hot-dipped Galvanized is 19. I can hardly wait for 20!!

-- Anonymous, May 08, 2001

Happy anniverary Sheepish!!! I want a little chainsaw that I can manage for mine....18 years. What category would we put that under......???? lethal weapons???

-- Anonymous, May 08, 2001

Now, Sheepish, that would make a cute little article for CS: The Homesteader's List of anniversary gifts (with alternates). Or we could invent one for homesteaders' wedding anniversaries and another for anniversary of years on the homestead . . . Whatcha think?

I haven't gotten much done today -- bunch of hassles that held things up. I think I've got a sinus infection (yay) -- all my upper teeth hurt. Got an appt. with my naturopath/acupuncturist tomorrow to see what can be done about it. Right before I have to go on a business trip too. What's next?!

-- Anonymous, May 08, 2001

I had a big bowl of salad with dinner last night, made from lettuce picked from my new little garden. My very first harvest! Yippee! I'll be transplanting my tomatoes this weekend. I have Amish Paste and Early Cascade. Only 12 plants total, I guess I'm a slacker compared to the other tomato fiends around here. I did have some sweet pepper starts as well, but my cats decided they were just too tasty and ate all the leaves off of them. Oh well, no purple peppers this year.

-- Anonymous, May 10, 2001

Well, I'm finishing up three days in a row off work and I haven't got a darn thing accomplished - unless you consider naps an accomplishment! Still don't have the grape arbor up, still don't have the garden planted (transplanted tomatoes into pots, instead), still don't have the house cleaned.

On the plus side, the sunflowers and first planting of sweet corn are well up and easily rowed, as is the field corn. The melons have also broken through the ground. Strawberries have put on tons of berries and it looks like it is a good thing that I took the 1st two weeks of June as a vacation. Maybe vacation is the wrong word!! Off work?? Nope, don't think that will fit it either! Sis, the rat-fink, is heading off to TX for two weeks May 28 - I swear that kid will do ANYTHING to get out of picking strawberries. I mean, it's not like she misses Ryan, or anything!

My knees are aching so maybe we have another storm front coming through. We've gotten rain about every other day for the past week - sounds like a good excuse for a nap to me!!

-- Anonymous, May 11, 2001

Hi Joy, yeah it's a good idea ! I may just do that when I come up for a breather!

I just put an ad in the paper for the weekend to give away all the aluminum storm windows that I have been collecting for my greenhouse. I am not going to get around to making one in the next year or so, and I am attempting to be efficient this year! I got a half-dozen calls from folks who want them for greenhouses, so I'm encouraged that there's other folks who grow things out there in the world! Hopefully, they'll be outta here in the a.m. as I have a church bazaar that I got suckered into participating in tomorrow....

Now I have to assess whether or not I want to keep all the lineal feet of dentil mouldings that we salvaged from an old Nordstrom store. I want to install this as shelving material in the bunkhouse (a la my workshop/office!) but haven't got to that point yet. Mr. S. wants me to lighten up my canning jars by about 50%, but I have to draw the line somewhere! Sheesh! What will I hoard then??? Also, we are thinking of divesting ourselves of some of the sheep (oh, that's hard!) but I have to get tougher with myself. My goal is to get rid of a ton of stuff in the *garage* (not pasture!) so we can have a party/"barn" dance this fall. Our garage is pretty big and full of stuff we have been collecting and tripping over......

Glad it's the weekend. What a week at work! Hey, can I really just homestead yet or do I have to keep working for a while? (Don't answer...)

p.s. Tren, hope you got my email! I didn't read my email for a long time...

-- Anonymous, May 11, 2001

Hey, Earthmamma, I would love to hear what the Dalai Lama had to say...can you recap some of it for us? Thanks!!!

-- Anonymous, May 11, 2001

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