28 March 2010

Spring at Lilac Farm



We have raised beds in our upper and lower gardens, but I am thinking it would be nice to have a kitchen garden right outside the front door of the house. With that in mind we've placed two cedar frames where we find them pleasing and easy to access...next steps as the temps warm up, which I will further chronicle, will be to lay newspaper down thickly in the frames, some leaves of straw, organic cattle manure from a friend's place, and compost...perhaps a bit of green sand, some alfalfa meal, and some kelp. Then stick some hoops of wire and some 6 mil poly to warm the beds...and plant...at this time we plan on greens, herbs, etc for immediate use. Trumpeters have already made territorial claims and the waters are being freed of ice. It's very early here for gardening, but not for planning. We have one small hooped bed planted to very cold hardy greens as of this writing...perhaps you can see it to the right of the front door, along the stone work.
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24 March 2010




I am also 'forcing' the rhubarb sprouts by placing a planting container over the new buds, forcing the plant to seek the little bit of light coming in through the holes up high above...the results are tiny leaves and long, succulent stems...soon.
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Spring?






Trumpeters are back on the pond, Canada Geese are honkin' up a storm, grouse are drumming rhythmically...the stream is flowing freely, little shoots are poking their tiny heads out of the soil. We have the upper garden hooped and warming up. Flats are started in the greenhouse off the front room (to be moved into the greenhouse at the studio/lower garden the first/second week in April or so)...We're planning on two pigs in the lower garden, which will require some cross fencing...planting half with last year's left over carrots/beets/rhutabagas/brassicas/lettuces/mustards, etc...and running the pigs in the other half to clean up the remains of the buckwheat from last falls till down. Then, switch. Plant the half that the pigs were in similarly and let the pigs have at the growing stuff. We are sharing chores/costs with another couple who will get one of the pigs.

Cheryl and I are discussing building an animal shed up here, near the upper garden...for a couple of milk goats, layers and next year's pig...how much of that will get done depends on our stamina and attitude, of course.

For now, we've 'built' a miniature hoop house right outside the front door, planted with mescluns...seeds are shown.
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The River

upstream from white sand beaches are hamlets, paddies and canyons bombshells unexploded, cratered land, cratered faces  mangled extremities...