Sunday, June 8, 2014

Homestead Update: Early June 2014

Hello Fellow Homesteaders!

I have to apologize for the lack of communication over the last couple weeks. Our homestead has had some exciting happenings! First, I'll announce that I, myself, have gone broody and we are expecting a new little homesteader! As with the other 2, I have been very down and out. I've been able to keep on top of the morning sickness a little better this time, but the dizzyness and fatigue are killing me! I haven't tended my garden in over a week and my Knight in shining armor has had to step in as chicken keeper. But this morning, we had quite the excitement that started the day with an adrenaline rush!

We woke up to the sound of very loud PEEP PEEP PEEPING! A day and a half early! I will post an article later about our chicken hatching adventures. These are the first 2 and there are several more hatching as I type!

I took advantage of that excitement and used that energy to get some housework done! My Knight tries to keep up, but this place gets insane fast! Not to mention he has to keep up with his own stuff on top of it all.

Despite it's lack of attention, my garden is doing ok. Root veggies are growing like crazy.

Here's a beauty of a turnip ready to be picked!

Amazing! Root veggies are so fun to pick!

Carrots are doing great, but it will be sometime before they are ready for harvest.

A yummy beet!

Though I should wait until they are bigger, I couldn't resist picking a few for dinner.

My tomatoes are growing away! I picked off all the suckers and bottom leaves. Tomatoes seem to do better the more air flow they have. I pulled a few weeds and mulched in a pile of grass clippings. It only covered half the bed, so time to mow for more!

My under cover greens pallet is growing away, with mostly weeds sadly. Even though we have had quite a bit of rain, these seeds didn't get water everyday and some of them won't sprout.

My cantaloupe starts seem to have survived.

Potato tower showing a bit of progress.

Square foot garden filling in.

The brassicas bed is full! Fortunately I did keep up with keeping BT on the leaves so the caterpillars didn't mow it all down. Though they tried. The wood sorrel growing between the plants has done a great job keeping other weeds out of there. I have some crab grass in the middle that I can't reach, though. I'll take care to fix that problem for next year.

This is already more broccoli than I got last year! I have heads forming on 2 others as well! Woo hoo!

Crate potatoes have started flowering! They are doing so great! Already better than last year. I can't wait to try some new potatoes in a couple weeks! Since I planted Yukon Gold, I am going to eat these as we harvest them and/or preserve them since they don't store as long as Russets. 

Tired potatoes are doing great too!

Alas, all my romaine lettuce has bolted! With the temperatures spiking so much this spring, greens have been a challenge to grow. Next year I'll be sure to put them in deeper shade.

Tiny Tim was in the greenhouse and almost died of dehydration! But thankfully, he perked back up with a lot of water. He has a ton of blossoms, but they are all wilted, so I hope I didn't kill a potentially nice crop.

Lots of seedlings sprouted and about died also, but I think they are all going to make it. Have some ready to transplant it looks like!

My sweet potato has certainly taken off!

Even my aloe had to get in on the baby bandwagon!

Straw bale garden not doing the best, but that's what I predicted. Taking notes for next year!

A close up of my Acorn squash blossom. I love love love squash blossoms! They are so beautiful!

My 1st corn crop is doing great!

The 2nd crop isn't doing as well. This is making me consider starting all my corn in the green house next year. The germination rate for corn is so low, it may well be worth it. My corn patch is one of the few places in my garden where I don't pull grass or weeds. It starts out clean, then goes from there. Hopefully the squash vines will spread enough to take care of that problem.

Last, and least, my original greens pallet that is pretty well done for. All the Romaine, Mustard, and Arugula have bolted. But at least the Mustard bolting is a good thing! I hope to harvest the seeds and see if I can use them. This spot is right where the chickens will enter and exit their home, so I will just let them have a buffet when the time comes!

Well, I hope you didn't give up on me! Rest assured, if you don't hear anything from me, it's for a good reason. Just means I'll have more juicy info to fill you in on! I'm excited to share my journey with you and hope you enjoy it too. Now, time to eat more pickles...

Happy homesteading!

Jen Hen

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