Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Pretty Boy, Our New Rooster

Pretty Boy the Ameraucana

Red Sex Link watching me collect eggs.

Waldo The Yellow Tractor

Welcome to my new farm blog. All the posts below this one are farm-type ones I transferred from my personal blog and are all out of chronological order! But from here on we're starting fresh, Fresca!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Recent Happenings

From February 2011:

Just some pics and stuff that's been going on around the house lately...
Veronica enjoying some sunshine a couple weeks ago.
Zack posing for the "Zack's Lawn Care" flyer we made.
Getting acquainted with our new beefy cows.
Even Buddy is licking his chops already.
Maybe he'll have some raw meat for starters!
(he loves harrassing the animals 40 times his size)
Veronica enjoying some more grub.
Francesca helps out by getting a few drops into her sissy's mouth.
Francesca's been helpful feeding the cat too.
And today... February 20,
we had a little half birthday celebration in honor of Vincent.

Tree Planting Party

From February 2009:

Last Super-hole Sunday (as Esther named it) some of our friends and family came over and dug a row of 21 tree holes along our creek, 3 holes in our back yard, and planted 14 trees in some of those holes! Wow! Thank you so much for the help. That was so awesome!

The trees we planted along the creek:
2 nectarines
1 Fuji Apple
1 Golden Delicious Apple
1 almond
2 plums
1 pluot
1 peach
1 Bing Cherry
1 Rainier Cherry
1 apricot

The trees in the back yard:
1 Meyer Lemon
1 kumquat

Now Jason and I get the pleasure of purchasing 10 more trees to plant in the holes that are already dug! We plan on getting more different varieties of fruit trees, plus a pecan for the row along the creek. A lime for the hole in the back yard. This will allow easy access for Jason's margarita making.

In addition to the above trees, last month Jason planted a Navel Orange and a Blood Orange in the front yard. There's also a small mystery citrus in the front yard that came with our house.

Having many fruit trees is a dream come true for Jason and I.

Vertical and Square Foot Gardening

From May 2009:

Here's the beginnings of our garden this year. We decided to try out square foot and vertical gardening. Check out the source book here:
The author claims that the pounds of food harvested per square feet are much more than the "typical" gardening. This is the first time I've worked with such an organized garden space. I do say that I like it! We went with two really long 1-square foot rows.
So far I have planted 3 different beans, cilantro, sweet basil, Thai basil, Italian parsley, bell pepper, Italian pepper, serrano, jalapenos, Thai pepper, cantaloupe, watermelon, 2 different cucumbers, a few different tomatoes, carrot seeds, and probably more I am forgetting.
This is just next to the garden, the site of last year's jumbled garden. I still plan on prepping and planting in this "triangle" soon. Here will go the large and sprawling plants such as zucchini, corn, and pumpkin. Plus I will plant sunflowers and a zinnia flower bed.
Here are those said plants, just waiting for more dirt to dig into.

Quote by Vincent

From July 2009:

"Sometimes God makes some really cool things. Not pretty, but cool."
~ Vincent Isaiah Poteet
Cucumber tendril

Garden Update

From July 2009:

Here's some photos from our garden this week. The vertical gardening is going pretty well. I like how the veggies are kept off the dirt so they stay clean, mostly bug free, and are easily harvested.
Here is our pumpkin patch in the "triangle" garden area. I know I planted these too close together but I do every year. One year I will learn my lesson. maybe going back and reading my blog garden posts will help!
The cucumbers are the most abundant produce this year so far. These are the burp-less variety. I also have slicing cucumbers. One day this week I picked 9 cucumbers in one day. It seems about every 4 days or so I get a bunch.
Below is our mini-stand of corn with pole beans climbing the stalks. Jason read about this method in a book.
See the bean vine?
Black Beauty Eggplant. I made some eggplant parmesean last week for my first time.
Serrano chile peppers. These are the type of peppers Herdez uses, Jason's favorite jarred salsa. We just got a pressure cooker in the mail today so I will can our own version of Herdez.
Here was some sad news this week. A gopher got to my biggest watermelon plant. So sad... hopefully we smoked him out with a smoke bomb tossed in his tunnel. Here is a pic of the wilted plant. I thought perhaps the drip irrigation wasn't working properly in this square foot. But then I discovered the pile of dirt nearby and a hole.
Here's the watermelon that seemed to be doubling in size almost every day.
Some good melon news... the cantaloupe are doing great! Here are some fuzzy baby fruit...
Here's one quite a bit bigger...
And here's one almost ready for the picking! This is my first year with cantaloupe, watermelon, and cucumbers.
Fragrant sweet basil.
And lookey here... that is not a hose! I found this serpent this morning, just two feet away from me pulling weeds. Yikes! Any tips on how to deter snakes from a lush garden?
Look in the middle of this photo and you will see his slimy little head. Click on any photo to see it larger.

Me vs. Spaghetti Sauce Canning

From August 2009

I won!
It all began Sunday around 3:30pm...
Actually it all began a few days ago when I received an abundance of tomatoes from our neighbor's garden.
To peel the tomatoes, dip them briefly in boiling water...
Then an icy cold bath... the peel slips right off.
Francesca enjoyed some tomato while waiting for her mommy to hold her...
Here's a portion of the 20+ pounds of peeled home grown tomato goodness...
Here's some of them seeded and squeezed of most of their juice.
I ended up with 40 oz of tomato juice.
Soon Jason will enjoy some home-made bloody mary's.
Mommy holding her precious tomato stained princess...
More ingredients to be added:
onion, basil, oregano, salt, pepper, garlic, red pepper...
More yummy natural vitamin c and lycopene...
There's my new monster of a pressure cooker! After I cooked the sauce and ladled it into the 9 jars, it was about 8:30. Once I got the pressure up to 11 pounds, they processed for 25 minutes.
All processed and ready to be put up!