Thursday, June 9, 2011

Our farm house

This is our "farm House." We bought a reconditioned small motorhome where we can sleep over, get out of the rain and get warm in the winter, and get cool in the summer. We have what amounts to a full hookup at the farm. AND, we can use it to travel when we want. We're really enjoying it.

Chickens are happy in their new home

We have 24 hens of at least six varieties. All are brown egg layers. They have a nice new hen house with plenty of room and a 40x40 ft pen in which to roam. They seem to be extremely happy to be outside and able to take dust baths, eat grass, and chase each other.

Garden mostly planted

June 9, 2011 -- The garden is mostly in for this year. Strawberries, shell beans, summer and winter squash, pumpkins, lots of green beans, corn, onions, shallots, garlic, broccoli, cabbage, lettuce, spinach, leeks, fennel, and more that I can't think of right now.
The weeds are also doing great. This weekend we need to do lots of weeding and then mulch with last year's dried grass to help control weeds and conserve moisture.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

We have renters

We advertised the farm house on Craig's List and got interest right away. We have signed a lease with a young family looking for a country home for their two lovely daughters, chickens and possibly milk goats. We're looking forward to working more closely with them. I have already broken sod for a new 40x50 ft garden in the former south pasture.

Spring is here

Last weekend we spread 15 cu yds of 'hog fuel' in the raspberry patch. 'Hog fuel' is freshly ground up wood material which makes good mulch. Often hog fuel is full of green branches, metal (soda cans), etc. This stuff was pretty clean. Cheaper than 'mulch' but just as useful.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Peep peep peep

That's what I hear when I answered the call from the post office this morning at 7:00 am. 26 day-old chicks were calling me from a dream in which I was dreaming about trying to corral bunches of baby chicks. But it wasn't a dream. They are now all safely bedded down in our green house, eating and drinking greedily, in a race to see who gets their feathers first. They will live in town with us for a month or so until they are old enough to sleep in their new house at the farm. We have fixed them a nice area in the middle of the green house. Hope they don't keep keep the seedlings awake at night.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Today I planted 75 strawberry plants. 25 each of Tri-star, Shuksan and Benton. It was cold (about 40 degrees) and my fingers were pretty cold by the time I finished. There are freeze warnings in effect for later in the week. The strawberries will probably be OK but the bare-root fruit trees we planted last weekend might need some mulch.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Rototilled Today

I went to the farm today intending to set out 75 strawberry plants I received recently from Raintree Nursery. As I was looking over the area where I intended to plant them, I noticed a lot of grass coming up in the soil I had last tilled in early December. I sure would like to take another whack at that grass before setting out the plants. So I started up the tiller to see how it would do. We had an inch of rain yesterday, so I wasn't very hopeful. Voila! the soil tilled nicely. It is mostly sand with lots of Cedar Grove compost worked in. It tilled very nicely.

So I went on and tilled the entire garden (1/4 acre). Only the very lowest 2 ft were a bit wet for tilling.

Then it started raining again -- hard. So I will delay planting another day. I have 25 plants each of three Varieties: Tri-star, Shucksan, and Benton. I planted Shuksan two years ago at the house and liked it a lot.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

February Harvest

Yesterday, Feb 12, we harvested a nice meal of brussel sprouts and leeks. It's so nice to have something fresh from the garden in mid-winter.

We also planted fruit trees: 3 frost peach, 1 liberty apple and 1 dayton apple, several thornless blackberry and several red raspberries. Before we planted the berries, I dug a ditch to help drain part of the front garden and we piled up dirt to raise the root zone of the berries up away from water during heavy winter rains.

The garlic and shallots are up nicely. I mulched two beds of garlic and left two beds unmulched. I thing the mulched beds will do better -- fewer weeds.

Saturday, February 5, 2011


Not much happened in January. I had a bad cold. We had some really cold weather. And I worked on a new chicken house -- sized for 25 laying hens. I'll post pictures of it when I have it closer to being done.

We did plant a bunch of walla walla sweet onions today. One bunch = one row. We could use a couple more rows. $3/bunch at Cenex. Pretty good looking onion sets, not like last years half dried out sets. You plant walla wallas from pencil-like starts. These were a good quarter inch in diameter.

Jennie also cleaned up the rose bed and the raised vegetable bed. I'm considering putting a hoop cover over the raised bed. We could probably get lettuce and spinach a month earlier that way.