Monday, February 9, 2015

Austrian Peas?

Last fall I bought 5 lbs of Austrian Peas intending to grow them as winter fodder for the chickens. I carefully planted them in a somewhat sheltered area on the sunny south side of a coop. After serving several years as the floor of a duck house and a year of being abandoned to the open air, the soil here was fantastic!  However, as is often the case, I drug my heels getting a canopy net up and darned if my South American flock didn't discover and devour all those adorable little seedlings.

Meanwhile, back in the kitchen, I was canning up the paltry 10 pints of green beans we managed to harvest - probably would have only been 6 pints but I stretched them with some sliced carrots. We plowed through those in a mere 2 months. That's partly because they made for a delicious bean soup and partly because my family apparently loves green beans!  We resolved to plan more beans and peas in 2015.

I came across this article (Mother Earth News, Oct/Nov 2014, Cheryl Long) and have been inspired to give these peas a second go around - this time in a glass walled coop that has been fallow for the last six months. I'll have to add a plastic covered canopy but I know for a fact (!) this spot can hold heat.  Now I just need to get my soil heating and perhaps by next week I'll have peas sprouting :)

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Playing with Tommie Toes

I say "playing" because a serious gardener wouldn't buy combo packs of plants simply labeled "Heirlooms".  There was a nice posted list of what they *might* be but it was a wait-and-see-what-you -have grab-bag kind of situation.  It got more complicated the minute I decided to buy singles of several plants and then got the labels mixed up. Perish the thought of saving seeds from this motely mix!

But, of course, I did....We'll see if we can even get them to sprout.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Wild Blackberry Memories

One of my fondest memories is exploring our land for the very first time way back in July 1997.  We have lovely footage of me working my way through a patch of wild blackberries with our then 10-month old daughter slung on my back.  In the video I'm picking berries and handing them to her over my shoulder.  She's making a valiant attempt to get them into her mouth but every time I get snagged on a thorn, she gets jarred and the berries go flying.   Eventually I notice the berries whizzing past my ears and (in typical oblivious mom fashion) say, "You better hang on to those berries kid 'cause they're kinda like gold."  At that point my amused husband zooms in on our daughter and you see she's got berry mash from ear to ear.