Saturday, July 31, 2010

Catch Up!

Well, shoot- I have been so busy doing, I forgot to post what’s been going on around here! I promise I will try to post more often, even if it’s not a long post.

So what’s been going on?

I put 21 eggs in the incubator, and 16 hatched. I ended up with 8 hens and 8 roosters. These chicks (now chickens) were healthier, friendlier, and bigger than the chicks I bought at Tractor Supply last year. They are all still alive and getting big- the roosters are crowing, and the hens should start laying in just a few more weeks! We did slaughter 5 chickens once I knew the eggs hatched- I plan on canning these guys for both meat and broth. Right now I have 12 hens and 9 roosters. I will kill of all but 2 roosters, and we’ll be good to go.

My neighbor came over with his tractor and tilled my garden twice in about 30 minutes and the planting began!

I planted: potatoes, cabbage, lettuce, broccoli, cauliflower, peas, carrots, radishes, green beans, tomatoes, corn, zucchini, acorn squash, cucumbers (pickling and slicing), pumpkins, watermelons, cantaloupe, and honeydew. I also tried to plant some raspberries along the perimeter, but once again, no luck. Oh yeah, I forgot about the gourds that I planted last year and came back- they’re taking over my garden and I may have to go into the gourd business!!

I had intended to plant an herb garden, but I ran out of time. Up until today, I continued to think about planting it this year. I have now decided that the herb garden will wait until next year, and I’ll plant my fall crops here instead (green beans, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, radishes, and carrots). So, while I have already started clearing it, I’ll spend this week getting the rest cleared and planted.

As far as canning goes, I have canned almost 60 pints of jam- strawberry and strawberry rhubarb. I am trying to capture enough wild blackberries to make some jam, and my sister is picking Concord grapes for me to make jelly.

I have also canned green beans, using a pressure canner for the first time- tricky business. I am canning some beans right now. My experience is to hot pack for success. And yes, this comes after two previous failures.

Anyway, I guess that’s what’s been going on here! Like I said in the beginning, I plan on checking in more often from now on, so see ya soon!