Lots of little odds and ends were worked on over the weekend, so we’ll do a point by point update today and just see how far we get.
We took some time this weekend to plant out trees and bushes that we’d been waiting to plant until the rains came. Well, the rains are a bit hit and miss right now, but we’re hoping they get more and more prevalent. So, this weekend (and today) we planted 6 bushes and four trees. By the garden gate we planted two Forsythias on either side along with a Black Locust at each end. If we can get a goodly number of bushes and trees along the fence lines, it will help with the winds. The trick will be keeping them from desiccating before they’re big enough to stand on their own.
Luckily, along the fence line by the garden gate, there are lots of morning glories coming up and I’m hoping they will help to shield the little plants and trees over the coming months. On the other leg of the fence line, the one that runs parallel to our back porch, we planted two crepe myrtles. Prior to that we planted out two humming bird vines that have actually started to thrive. We’ll let them climb along the fence and slowly begin to propagate them, once we can. I’m also thinking we’ll leave the crepe myrtles as bushes for a while, we can always make them into small trees later, as we get other things to fill in the lower spots. I’m thinking we’ll be planting lots of rose-
mary, oregano, lavender and other hardy herb bushes. The oregano I brought out in many of the plants has really taken off, and my one rosemary bush is doing quite well. This last time out to California, mom gave me a lavender that she has started from her’s that has acclimated quite well. When I see, in my mind’s eye, how this will look in a few years – I get really quite excited. Just a few more steps before we get there.
The other trees were Maples that Sue received “free with purchase”. They’ve been doing quite well in their 5 gallon camo-buckets, so we thought it was time to plant them out. We’re trying to provide shade for the coop, so these were planted to the south of that, in the hopes that they will provide much needed shade in the Summer. Because they are deciduous, they will let the sun shine through during the cold winter months. We’ve planted all these in wire baskets to help fight off the darn gophers. This will, at the very least, allow the trees and bushes to get somewhat established before the gophers start on the roots. We have also been planting everything with composted manure to ensure they have some good fertilizer to help them out in the beginning.
Saturday morning, after Sue dropped Dustin off at Bisbee, she stopped at our friends – the Kelly’s – and picked up a load of horse manure. We were thinking that this might be the last load needed for the circle garden. However, once she unloaded it all (Belle and I were at Jem’s for the Vet Clinic, otherwise I would have helped- don’t give me a hard time), we see that perhaps one more load is needed and that should be the end. You can see the front right quadrant is still below the foot path. We want the dirt/compost to be even with those foot paths. Remember, under the footpaths are the worm tunnels, where we’ll put the compostable materials that we’re not feeding to the chickens and that are good for the little worms. I’ve been able to bring home the shred from work, and shredding the newspapers as well, in preparation for the little guys. Once we get things settled, we’ll purchase them from the internet; they are available in bigger numbers for less money.
Speaking of feeding the chickens – we were, weren’t we? Sue’s been pulling what she calls Velcro weed (because it acts just like Velcro if it gets on your socks or clothes) and feeding it to the chickens. It’s coming up by the bushel over at the Dinky House, so when she goes that direction to feed the Goat Boys, she grabs hands-full and drops them over the fence for them. They really like it! They do have green grass in their run right now, but nothing quite as delicious. We try to give them whatever we pull up to see how they enjoy it. So far, Velcro weed is the favorite. They enjoy a good thistle plant every now and then too.
Finally, a project I work on when I can, is the deck dirt barrier. I talked about this a little in the last post. My plan is to do this all along the west end of the porch. I didn’t realize how much dirt had washed under until I started digging it out to place these concrete edgers. We want to keep the dirt off of the wood to help prevent rot and keep the termites from eating the deck away. This is an “in progress” shot, but you can see the concrete edger that I’m putting in right under the porch edge. I might have to move that Gardenia out a little bit – we don’t want to trap water against the wood either. I guess it’ll be a balancing act. I actually can’t believe that gardenia plant is still alive. It was here when we came and had suffered through some severe neglect while the property and house were unoccupied. Must be a tough little bush. That’s good for us, if we want to continue to have it survive.
Not really a project – but always good for laughs… here are The Ducks, refusing to go into the coop during the rain we had this afternoon. I did let them stay out until it really started coming down good. Then, even they were ready to go in for a while. We do have some new chickens, though, that gave me the run around (literally). Eventually, everyone went in. Then a half hour later it stopped raining, so everyone got to come out again! Oh well, at least they are happy little birds.
OK. Well, I thought this was going to be a short little piece, but I guess I was feeling more verbose than usual. As you can see, we’re in the middle of many things. Priorities change day to day with what’s happening, what the weather is like, what is all the sudden much more important – like if some body needs first aide or something. Even when we think we’re not doing too much, we are doing things that are taking us along the path; one step, one task, one project at a time. As we continue to enjoy the adventure, we’re hoping you’ll stick with us. You know we’ll keep you up to date when the next step comes around. Until then, as always~
Thanks for reading!
Today’s Weather: Today we actually had rain! Still needing to put up that gauge though. Looks like it would like to give us more, so we’re out there saying “Yes! Please rain!”.
Egg Report: Yesterday we had 10, which I thought was a great egg gathering, but then today we had a whole dozen!!! One dozen in one day – without finding someone’s hidden clutch, or having some left over from the day before – this may be a first, not too sure about that. But this is excellent and should soon start to be more of the norm. Just a few more weeks and everyone should be laying. Well, except the roosters of course.