alpine flowers at Grey Rock

Friday, April 30, 2010

Pest of the Month

Yes, deer! They travel through this time of year on their way to summer grounds (we hope). About the time I think I am raising more venison than peas, they are gone. Well, most of them are gone. We usually have one or two does who stick around and have their babies somewhere close. Can handle that, just not the whole herd.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

No raccoons!

Just a note to anyone who was concerned. The raccoons have moved. Just moving a few boards which created a wide opening into the nest they were calling home has done the trick. A few visits by the nosey landlord, and they took their leave. Straight downhill by the main creek, the neighbors have several old sheds. Hopefully their rent was prorated at their next abode.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Farm Blog Directories

I have been accpeted to a blog directory and I visited another one that operates as a farm news stand. There are some pretty interesting blogs out there and some farmers have been doing it for quite awhile and seem to be having a lot of fun. So, I will add them as links down to the right and if you have time and interest you can check them out. Moosey even has a "What plant am I?" quiz, purely unscientific, just something she and her son had fun making it appears.

Saturday, April 17, 2010


I found a raccoon nest today. I saw two of them, a couple I would think. We talked to one another, well they hiss a little, and I moved some boards so they know I am not so happy about them living so close. The dog was going crazy, but don't worry, he is basically harmless. The raccoons knock things over and get into the recycle stuff. They swim in our little pond trying to catch the fish. I know they go out to the garden and mess around, but they don't bother much until there are melons and corn. I didn't want to kill them, and I couldn't tell if anyone was pregnant, but there were no babies, so I just urged them to live elsewhere or I would visiting again very soon. Pesky neighbors, dropping by all the time. We have a live trap and I could maybe move them , if I don't just trap the cat...

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


I can't control the weather. If I could I would call for a few sunny days in a row right now. As far ahead as the garden was, now I am right back a couple of weeks behind. I base that on what the plants are doing. Usually, we would have asparagus coming out of or ears by the middle of April. That's a funny saying and picture, too. The crops I planted outdoors are doing little to nothing and I will end up with a giant gap in production because of it. In summer, I would call for a rain about every ten days. That would be perfect, and wildfires would no longer plague our area. Meanwhile, second guessing the weather, I started the next round of spinach, lettuce, napa cabbage, etc., in 32 cell trays to transplant when the weather does want to cooperate.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


Yep! Soil. If you said wallet, pocketbook, or bank account, you are very funny. If you said weary, you get the booby prize. The premise to sustainable farming is building the soil so that it will grow whatever year in and out, rather than the conventional approach which does whatever it can to get one crop for one year. That is how quick fix fertilizers and pest controls came to be leading us far away from food grown in soil which provides a full spectrum of nutrients. Looking at soil as the food web, the origins of life, gives it the importance it should have.

Monday, April 5, 2010


Here is a question for you...what is the most important thing I grow on the farm?

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Bird Talk

Birds are stopping by on there way south and north. Nuthatches and chicadees check every bark scale on the trunk of the oak tree at our front door. Papa purple finch looked madly red compared to the subdued colors of his mate. The male robins are thick in the field when I walk out in the morning. They tweedle at me because I have forced them to move to the trees just to be on the safe side. A peregrin, maybe a young one or one establishing this neighborhood is his, has been squawking at me from around the edge of the garden and spending time hiding in the fir trees where the camo eludes my picking his form out of the surrounding branches. Vultures have returned from the south for the summer, swooping long glides with the feathered tips at the ends of their wings looking like stiff fingers stretching out. The goldfinches with their cute bright yellow accents drive the cat crazy with all there chatter as they work on dandelions dotting the same yellow in the grass. These mornings when the weather is dry, it is down right noisey in the garden.