Projects keep happening here, so this is a quick update on a few things that are going on.

img_0151Hügelkulture – AKA “The Abyss”- Sue made huge strides this week in completing this project. She ordered yards and yards of mulch from the transfer station in Sierra Vista and had it delivered. The guys that delivered it also planted the bigger trees for us and moved the mulch around into the abyss and added the dirt etc.  That saved us a great deal of work and they were done in two days with what probably would have taken us a week or so.  The photo at left shows the progress thimg_0159img_0153at was made yesterday: the trees are placed and the mulch pile at the back is being distributed around the grounds.  These other two photos are of the finished work from today.  The guys covered our trees and and also mulched previously planted trees.  It’s just so nice to have the trench filled in… now we’ll see how well the trees do as the mulch, manure, cardboard/paper, and wood breaks down over time.  The way the trench was filled and the fact that it’s all on a downward slope should also help us with the watering, especially during the monsoon season.  The yards will be looking so lovely, as long as we can keep the trees growing.  Sue did make gopher proof planting baskets for the trees, so – hopefully – we won’t loose things to those little buggers.

img_0157Gabion Walls – This is an ongoing project.  I think we’ll always have rocks and there will always be another wall that we could build!  In a few years we’ll be like those pastures in Ireland with the stacked rock walls all around.  Today Sue worked on the little enclosure for our trashcan.  This might seem like a small thing, but the winds – of which you’ve heard so much lately – are constantly knocking over the trash can and we run around collecting refuse that has been, not so artfully, strewn around the property.  This little thing will be a three sided enclosure that should keep our trash can in place.  Looks a bit better as well.

img_0155Water Harvesting –  the 1800 gallon water tank has been filled up twice now.  We’re using the water to irrigate the surrounding trees and garden areas.  We are both astounded at how quickly it fills up and are thinking that we need to put up at least one more on the other side of the house.  We also think of ways that we can fix the roof and fill up the cistern that is over by the goat pen.  We’d love to be able to put in a green house over there and this would be an excellent way to water that!

img_0156Wind – While this is not a project, it continues to be an ongoing battle. While I was out in California this last weekend, the wind blew here with hurricane force. Now, all the movable shelters for the chickens have been completely demolished. Sue’s wonderful Chickshaw was picked up, smashed around, and torn apart. The same thing happened to the little chicken tractor that my dad so lovingly made me for my first few Banty Chickens. Neither of these temporary shelters were light weight!  But the wind was not to be deterred. We are now investigating different types of shelters for moving and housing the chickens around the property. If you know of someone wanting to get rid of a station wagon or van, we are seriously considering using a vehicle as a position-able chicken coop!

Now you are, mostly up to date.  I can add that the goats have finished off the Christmas Tree and all that is left are dried, brittle branches!  There will always be projects and always be updates.  Until the next, as always,
Thanks for reading!

Weather for Today: Pretty darn frigid!  When I left for work today at 5:30 it was 27°, at 6:00 it was 26°.  The high today was supposedly 52°, but the wind was so bitterly cold that we think it felt more like 46°.  Tomorrow it’s very similar for the lows and the high is only going to get up to 49°.

Egg Report: We picked up 3 eggs from the Biggies today.  Had three the day before as well, but Sue says one of those was from Tuesday that she didn’t get to because our big black chicken, Ahmen, was being extra aggressive.  (He is not long for this world.)  But, looks like egg production is on the rise!