Sunday, July 16, 2006

Finally, a farm update!

I told myself I was going to go to bed early tonight so I could work outside tomorrow before it gets too hot but the kids are staying up late so I decided to wander around our homeschoolers farm blog ring and see what everyone's been up to. Oh, it's all so wonderful! Grapes, potatoes, bread baking, flowers, and finally the tomatoes are here! We also have our first ripe tomatoes which is such a relief after so many years of having no garden. I'm sure I'll be canning like crazy this fall because our tomato plants are 5 feet tall and loaded. We also have a single tomatillo bush that looks like it will produce enough tomatillos for a couple gallons of green salsa. We have already put up a bunch of apricots and some basil and jalapenos.

So far our experiment with free range chickens has been a success! They range far and wide during the day and always return to their portable roosting cage at night, which is when they are at greatest risk from predators. We just modified the cage to make some laying spots with the hope that the hens will start to lay in there.

I'm just thrilled with our diversity of breeds too. They look so beautiful out there in the field. My favorites are the blue andalusians (not just because Andalusia is the home of Flamenco), which are actually blue, black, or splash (white with black marks). The cockerels are just learning to crow which is quite amusing. The sheep are doing well too and growing a beautiful fleece. The ram has been testing the fences lately which has been a challenge for us but we got a new run of electric fence up today which seems to be working.

We just dug some mounds for pumpkins and melons today and will plant tomorrow. That's going to be all we can manage this year since we still have a house to finish.


Danielle said...

Oh man! I *so* can't wait to see your beautiful homestead!

The sheep are gorgeous. Who will shear them?

Jenny said...

Ah, well of course I only post photos on the blog that don't show all the construction junk still lying around or the unfinished parts. So it's not all that beautiful yet.

There is a guy in town who's supposedly THE man to call for shearing. So for the first few times we'll have him down to show us how and then maybe we'll give it a try ourselves.