68 posts categorized "Garden"

never a dull moment

The sunset the other night was just awesome.  I looked up from checking on the pigs that we had moved that day to their new paddock area and this is what I saw.  It was really nice to see after having such a difficult time moving the pigs from their old paddock to their new one.  I've come to the conclusion that pigs are not up for change and that they are creatures of habit.  I should have video taped the whole process but I didn't.

Sunsetjuly

We also harvested our garlic and so far growing garlic has been going good (LOL).  It seems like it's been so long since we planted the garlic bulbs, in reality it's only been just over 8 months.  I would like to double our garlic harvest for next year.  Our onions are not quite yet ready to harvest, we planted them later than we usually do.

Dryinggarlic

Garlic harvest

Visiting with our Amish friends last week they gave me some eggplant.  I have never ever had eggplant before and thought I would try some when they offered it to me.  I have to say that I am not a fan of eggplant.  It could have been the way I cooked it, and I will say it won't be something I would be planting in the future, we both actually didn't care for it.

Eggplant

We have been dealing with hornets when we sit out on our back deck, to the point that I'm getting stung when I hang my clothes out on the line.  Well we found the source for all those hornets, I will tell you this was HUGE that we had to take it down for our safety.  Looking at it though it really is a beautiful piece of work done by the hornets.

Hornestsnest

Well our little Noki is down to 8 lives now.  We are not sure how it happened but she somehow got hurt to the point that we thought she wasn't going to make it.  Noki had crawled up into our ATV and Jim's not sure what happened, his first thought was that he had run over her with the ATV but I don't think so, she hurt her right back leg and could hardly walk for a few days.  I think that she had gotten thrown off of the vehicle and somehow her leg got twisted and sprained.  Here she is a few days ago and today she is starting to jump and play with Smoky our other barn kitten.  Poor little Smoky couldn't figure out why her barn mate wasn't up for playing anymore, but she's back and I am glad.

No-kee

There is never a dull moment here on our homestead and I like it that way.


what's been happening here on the homestead

I don't think I will be able to update you on all that's been happening here without having photo overload, so I'll just do the best I can.  Since sugaring we have been so busy here on our homestead.  We got pigs this spring and friends came out to help us put up the fence before they arrived which was a HUGE help and we appreciated it so much.  The pigs are definitely getting big since the day we got them.

J&r

J&J

Had to get a photo by Jim's old ford tractor which has been such a work horse here for him.

Ro

Pigs

I've been growing herbs and trying to dry them out but it's been so hot and humid lately it may take a bit longer than I would like.  I'm also making some infused herb oils that I will be making into salves when they are ready.

Herbs

Infused oils

I started incubating eggs from our hens on July 1st and we candled them last night and it looks like all 22 eggs may have something happening.  I'm crossing my fingers that we will have chicks by the 21st or 22nd of July.  Our rooster Rudy is such a good boy and really takes care of this girls.  He has 23 hens to look after and does a tremendous job.

I know some may think that is too many hens for one rooster and we did try out another rooster to see how it would work and maybe have two flocks going but Rudy would  have none of it, so this guy had to go, and he was such a beautiful guy too.

Roo2

So Rudy in the man around the coop.

Rudy

This is the first time we have hatched eggs on our own, we have always gotten chicks from the feed store in town.  We'll see how many hens vs roosters we hatch out.  I'm hoping to get some roo's so I can process them in the pressure canner instead of freezing them. 

Eggs

The gardens are doing great now that we finally have gotten rain.

Weeding

Coop and vines

Grapes

What's a homestead without barn cats or kittens :)  Meet Smoky and Noki.  Noki is a Finnish word for soot.  Jim started calling the top one Smoky and I thought the black one looked like soot so I looked up the Finnish word for soot and it was Noki (pronounced No-Kee).  They are both girls and just so cute.

Smoky

Noki

There is nothing like taking a break with some coffee, haymakers punch also known as switchel and wild berries that are growing in the back yard.  I add lemon juice and maple syrup in place of the molasses and brown sugar.  I use either Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar or my homemade ACV, just depends on my mood at the time.   Believe it or not the haymakers punch really does refresh you on a hot day, especially when you have been working outside in the hot weather.

Berriesandhaymaker

Acv (2)

My flower garden is blooming so nicely.  I look at this lily and always think of my blogging friend Ann who sent it to me after my dad passed away.  When it blooms I think of them both.

Flower

I think I have covered most of the stuff I wanted to share with you, like I said there is just so much that has been happening here I'm not sure I could cover it all in a blog post so I just gave you some highlights.

I hope your days are going good where you live, take care.


planting garlic

Garlicbed3

Planting

Garlicbed2

Garlicbed

Since Jim was starting to feel better we planted about 100 garlic cloves.  He stood there and made the hole for me and I crawled on the ground planting the garlic.  The weather finally warmed up enough for us to get out there.  I could have done it myself but I think the nice warmer weather actually did Jim some good.   I have a hard time believing Thanksgiving is next week already, well our October is nothing but a blur so it's totally understandable why Thanksgiving crept up so fast.  

I've not really done anything around the house for so long that when the warm weather came I opened up some of the windows and aired out the house and did some long overdue cleaning.  I also did some cleaning of all the photos on my phone, I knew my photos were adding up and I believe I deleted 7,368 to be exact.  I didn't totally delete them, I uploaded them to my laptop and now they are safe on an external hard drive.  It took me about 3 long days to do it all, but I did it...whew! 

Tell, me I'm not the only one who has that many photos on their phone ;)  


i'm ready for warm weather

I can't wait to get these babies outside and in the ground, but it's way too early and our temps have just been so cold.  It's the middle of April and I'm still wearing my winter coat...UGH!  I am so ready for warmer weather.

Melons

Squashplant

Plantstand

I spied an owl hanging out in the back pines today.  At first I thought how neat, so I snapped a quick photo and I mean quick cause the photo came out a bit blurry.  But there was nothing neat about it, this owl was sitting there high up in the tree with it's eye on our hens and rooster who were in our yard free ranging for food.  I didn't figure it out until I spied the hens and rooster hiding under our lilac bush, so quickly we hurried outside to get them back into their run and coop area where they were safe.

Owl

The local nursery opened up for the season today and we headed over there before it got too crazy, we were the only ones in the nursery which was very nice.  We got exactly what we were wanting to get for our garden this year, more herbs, tomato and pepper plants.  We do grow a lot of our vegetables from seeds as well as the starter plants.

Nursery

I have a feeling that growing our own food and raising our own meat is going to be the norm for a lot of people.


seedlings

Seedlings-1

I started some seeds in the house, Minnesota midgets which is a type of melon that will grow in colder climates.  We have had good and bad luck with them, the bad luck was having a very wet late summer/early fall made for crop failure in our melons.  That year we actually had quite a few plants that started off really good, that is until the rains came and the garden just never dried out enough for them to ripen and all of them rotted on the vines.  I'm so hoping that this year will be different.  Let's hope!  I also planted some squash, Jim loves squash so I have almost a half a dozen seedlings popping out of the egg shells they are planted in, soon I will transplant them into bigger pots so they can keep on growing.

Coffee time-1

We have been lacking sunshine here in Southwest Wisconsin, so when the sun does shine both Jim and I have been heading outside as much as we can.  Coffee on our back deck is definitely a thing to do, our back deck gets very hot in the summer months so spending any time back there is not something we do often, so in the spring we take advantage of being able to go back there and enjoy a cup of coffee.

I hope all is well with you all and you're all staying safe and healthy.


canning season

Our canning season is still going strong.  We went to the apple orchard this fall and bought some honey crisp apples.  We usually get the seconds as they are cheaper in price.  I received an email from the orchard we usually go to that they had a BOGO sale going on, which is buy one box, get one box free.  Since it was busy here this fall, but who am I kidding, it's a ALWAYS busy here, but since I was busy I didn't get to the apples right away so we lost a few to rotting.  BUT, I was able to make applesauce out of the remaining good apples.  We really didn't lose that many but it sure seemed like it at the time I was going through them.

Applebowl

This time before I cooked the apples I peeled them.  Oh my goodness, I will always and forever do that when I make applesauce again.  

Potofapples

It was so much easier when I was putting the apples through the sieve, I was not fighting the peelings.

Sauce

Twenty-four pints of delicious applesauce ready to be put down with all the other canning we did this fall.

Applesauce

I not only canned the applesauce, Jim and I canned more venison stew from the deer he got and the potatoes, onions, and carrots we grew in our garden this year.

Earlier in the fall we canned our peppers and potatoes and made tomato sauce with the tomatoes we picked.  When I say we, I do mean both of us.  I am very fortunate to have a husband who enjoys canning as much as I do.

Peppers

Tomatoes
Potatoes

Onions
It really feels good when you do a garden, and come harvest time it's very exciting to preserve the food we've grown.  It's a lot of work but so worth it in the end.


our sign

I love our sign.  Mr. made it after I sketched out what I wanted and then when it was in place I painted it free hand.  I usually take a photo of it in each season but here summer is almost over and I'm just getting a photo now.  When we first moved here there were hosta's in this area, but they eventually developed some kind of disease or fungus and we ended up pulling them out.  So, I planted a few different kinds of lilies.  We hang sap buckets on the sign during sugaring time and this year we kept them on, I kind of like them on all the time.

Sign

Sign2

Sign3

Sign4

Sign5

Sign6

I'm so enjoying the cooler weather we have been having, but I know it may not last and the warmer temps will be back.


life sure is grand

I went to town to do a few errands and took a different route.  There are about three ways to go to town when I head out my driveway and I went along the ridge towards what we call tickle belly hill.  If you were to start at the top of the hill at a very fast rate of speed you will feel like you're on a roller coaster.  I stopped to take this photo as you can see not a car in sight in front of me or behind me.

Ticklebellyhill

I've also been meaning to take a photo of the barn quilts that are always leaning up against this barn.  I believe they are for sale, and I think the owner needs to put one up on this barn as well.

Barnquilts

One item on the list of errands was to get a new dog bed for Sadie, and after a few sniffs of the new bed she settled herself down.  I think it's a hit.  Sadie is getting old, some days she can't keep up with us on walks and other times she's way ahead of us where we have to catch up to her.  She definitely has a good life.

Sadiegirl

The garden has been producing quite well, we have had food from our garden everyday.  Walking out to the garden to gather a few things for lunch or supper is nothing short of awesome!

Soup

Life sure is grand :)


this and that

I've got a little bit of this and a little bit of that in this post.  Tho I've not been blogging regularly I have been busy and all these photos are from my cell phone.

From my walk the other day.  Did I say before that we are green and lush? Well we are and as you can see the vegetation almost covered this fence post.

Fence post

Our pumpkin harvest was really good this year.

2016 pumpkins

Over the summer I joined a Mystery Block of the Week and made a picnic quilt.  I went outside the box a bit and added the flying geese and the 4 patch strip on the ends to make it just a tad bigger.

Picnic quilt

This Missouri Star tumbler quilt went to Alaska.

Masons quilt

Another pattern from Missouri Star, the Everything Bag.

Bag

One of my daughters wanted me to make this for her, so before I mailed it out I had to model it.

Hoodedcowlblack

This is just a little bit of what I've been doing and I'll leave you with a photo of some visitors that we had come by the other day.  Our neighbors cows got loose and they meandered over to our place (LOL).

Visiting cows


the "ber" months have started

Those being, September, October, November and December.  I love the "ber" months.  Our colors really have only just started to show and it's really only few scattered around the county.  Tho the sumac's we saw on the way home today were vibrant.  I took a quick shot with my cell phone since I forgot my camera at home.

Sumac

And today I walked out onto the front porch and saw this tomato that Mr had placed on top of one of the deck posts.  I finally asked him what he planned to do with the tomato and he said "Nothing, why would I when I can just go out to the garden and get a fresh one"...Okaaaaay...I had no comment :)  So there it sits.  I'll bring it in and cut it up, shhhhhhh...He'll never know :)

Lone tomato

We canned more beans and there are still beans out in the garden.

Raw beans

There's just something about seeing jars filled with something that you grew, harvested and processed to be enjoyed in the winter months.

Beans

I volunteer at the local hospital and on the way to town I could smell that a farmer had sprayed manure on the fields.  Well, I came up over the hill and there it was, the infamous manure spreader.  I wish I could say that I kept a big distance between us but I would be lying.  I would have had to go so slow that I would be going backwards to have kept my distance, because the manure spreader was going very, very, slow and I had caught up to it.  Luckily the farmer turned into a field not too far past the curve...whew!!

Following

There is just never a dull moment around here.