Where’ve you guys been hiding out?

The best times of the year for blogging are also the ones when it’s hardest to find the time…but here’s a quick update on happenings around our homestead.

In the garden

Fairytale Eggplant – delicious, 3″ beauties:

Blue Lake bush beans are starting to flower:

The tobacco experiments are going better this year. The tallest of these is about 5′ now, because it’s in the raised hay-bale bed filled with pure composted goat bedding/poo:

Watermelons are enjoying the poo-bed, too:

Here it is from the end…zucchini closest to the camera, with 2′ long leaves:

…but even in rather poor soil, zucchini plants just keep cranking the food out like nothing else we grow:

Lemon cucumbers are struggling a bit, but producing well despite whatever I’m doing wrong:

Our little fig tree is going strong:

Delicata squash – one of my favorites. We saved seed from our Wintergreen Farm CSA boxes last year, I’m really glad they grew:

The peas have been wonderful this year, making new pods as fast as we can pick them for months, and are just slowing down now:

Summer is nothing without tomatoes…we have probably about 50 or 60 plants, mostly Brandywine red, seen here:

Sweet 100 cherry tomatoes break our no-hybrids rule, but they’re 6′ tall and LOADED with fruit:

Although 1 good zucchini plant is enough for a small family, we have the two giant ones int he pure poop, plus a few more seen here keeping the cantelope vines company:

Beets are about ready to harvest, and we’re planting more. We both love beets, they store well, you can make dye from them, and if all else fails, they’re good goat food:

Black oil sunflower seeds are great livestock feed…they’re scattered here and there, but next year we’ll probably plant a large field of them:

Finally for this segment – apples! Many of the trees lost their buds in a late freeze, but for some reason this tree is as apple-y as ever:

Infrastructure report

The construction never, ever stops. The goats are now enjoying another 1/4 acre of pasture that I’ve fenced off, and we’ve enclosed about 1500 sq ft around the chicken house so they can still enjoy some freedom on days they don’t have the run of the whole property.

They’re perfectly capable of flying over the fence, as one does every morning to lay her egg in our woodpile, but so far they haven’t figured out that the flying over the fence trick works in both directions. Chasing and flapping ensue.

Since we started milking our goats this spring, we’ve been doing it under a rickety “just for today” tarp arrangement that’s not much fun when it rains:

…but soon, we’ll have a nice, snug 8’x8′ milking shed:

The big old red truck has some problems that I don’t have the time to deal with, and 8mpg isn’t very good even for something that only goes on the road a few times a month. A friend gave me a nice deal on his old truck, a much more reasonably sized Mazda b-2000. Only the perspective makes them look similar in size.


No blog post would be complete without a goat picture…here’s Drama about to eat my camera:

13 thoughts on “Where’ve you guys been hiding out?”

  1. Lisa

    Okay, only in a fairytale would 3″ be considered a *delicious beauty*….if Drama Queen has babies, could you name one Size Queen for me?!? =)

  2. Mary Jo

    WOW! The only things you’re missing is asparagus beds and blueberry bushes! Are you vegetarians now with all that bounty?

  3. Peter

    Aww shucks =p

    We did have blueberry bushes, in a carefully loosened and composted raised bed. This proved irresistable to the chickens, and there is one small bush still hanging on.

    Asparagus is even sadder…we bought crowns in the spring and never got around to planting them…guess we’ll see how long they last in storage

  4. Miriam

    All the rain this summer has put ‘our’ (the farm’s, and my personal) crops about a month behind… sigh – corn is still a week off! Picking some early apples, and peaches and nectarines by the bucket-loads, though! Things are looking very nice out your way, keep up the good work!

  5. Jay Solis

    Dude your construction skills are improving and impressive. Can I hire you to help me at my house?

  6. Peter

    Aww, thanks!

    Now if you donâ??t mind a house built out of bits of old shipping pallets and lengths of fresh-cut saplings, we can talkâ?¦

    (Actually, many of those shipping pallets are made of fine quality hardwoods. I recently marveled at a gorgeous house where much of the furniture, trim, etc. was made of planed and sanded Oak etc from palletsâ?¦and thereâ??s a company out there that recycles them into hardwood flooring)

  7. Janice

    Everything looks great. Ugh… to have that life sounds nice. I know it’s alot of work, but isn’t it worth it?

  8. Peter

    Thanks for the nice comments about our garden! We’re very pleased, though as subsequent posts show, it’s not all success.

    It is SO worth the work, Janice =)

  9. Tm

    Farmer Pete, awesome that you’ve done it! Fresh organic food, furry & feathery friends, what an great way of life – Congrats! Now about your tobacco plants, kinda expected the other kind in your garden…after all these years, you never stop surprising me!

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