Sunday, August 5, 2012

Triple Creek Farm, July 28, 2012

With watering, lots of mulch, and good planning we made it through the first hot spell.  The second one has taken its toll on the garden.  We have cucumber plants without any leaves but there are baby cukes.  How nice it would have been if some of these would have grown up and we could have used them for salads.  I use what I call a water pick for my tomatoes, they are holding most of the leaves and some of the tomatoes are being burned by the sun.  More planning will go into next year's garden.  I am going to have to be able to put up some sun screen to keep the heat out of the garden.  There is no cure for the many insects we are having, strange things I have never seen before.  I do not want to add additional problems by using sprays of all sorts to protect the crop.  I do eat what I plant, if I cannot protect them  with garlic pepper spray I will just have to loose another crop.

IN THE KITCHEN


This week very little has happened in the kitchen.  Five quarts of tomatoes were canned and 2 quarts of my tomato juice, very thick, which I will use for tomato basil or cream of tomato soup.  I will make the soups in the winter.  One more batch of blackberry jelly is on the shelf.  I am adding to the stash in the freezer

Cooking the vegetables from the garden is always fun, finding new recipes and making changes with old ones.  I did make a sausage and bean soup and added in the some of the dried veggies from last season. This is a very filling soup and hearty, you sometimes need something like this in the warm weather.

ON THE FARM

The duck run has been covered with wire and now we will be able to leave the chickens in the run during the day.  This increased the amount of space the flock will have to roam.  Our next project is setting the corner posts for the pasture fence.  We have some cedar trees felled and waiting to be set.  This project may take some time if we have to go into the woods and locate more trees.

We have been keeping the traps set and a raccoon was caught.  Again, this was carried to a farm on the river which was pleased to have it come.

IN THE COOP

The flock is getting along quite well.  Still have no idea if we have roosters.  All I can say is 2 of the little peeps are huge.  The ducks are such an important part of our flock.  They seem to bring a kind of happiness into the run I have not seen before.  It is so sweet when Deedle puts her neck and head over one of the hens looking as if she is trying to hug it.  I would love to get a picture to share with you but I would need to sit up camp to capture that shot.

I think we have only Aurora broody at this time.  Blanche and Feather are continuing to molt.  We were able to gather 29 eggs this week.  We were away from the farm most of Saturday and maybe a black snake got into the coop and ate some eggs, I really have no idea.  More of the girls could be starting to molt.  Mr. Bootsie just came in from closing the coop and he had a egg shell in his hand.  He had found this in the coop, I hope we do not have someone eating eggs.  Only 1 egg was collected on Saturday and 1 shell found.  I will be keeping a very close watch.

IN THE GARDEN

I am pleased that I am able to pick anything.  I started planting for the fall garden.  I have seedlings up in the greenhouse and I will be potting them in a few days.  The squash bugs have won the round this year.  I am going to pull all of them out except for a couple which look pretty good.  The bugs will move to those and that will be the end of them.  I have planted 2 hills of late squash.  We shall see.  Bloody butcher corn is looking real good and I will have some corn for the flock.  Black eyed peas are loaded with blooms and small peas.

IN CLOSING

Every year, it is gamble when you put the seed and plants in the ground.  At least when I gamble I get a little something back.  I have no idea if this will be a good year,  for us, or a bad year.  The only thing I do know is we will not have to get rid of the flock because we cannot feed them.  They do produce enough for us and themselves.  I have no idea what the price of feed will be this winter but I plan to stock up some feed for the winter.  We do not use that much feed for the chickens and this will be the first winter for the ducks but they love eggs and I am hoping I will have ducks eggs by the winter.  With good planning, I will be able to move forward with my little farm.  Thank goodness,  for I am just beginning to really have fun being on the farm.

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