Friday, June 19, 2015

Getting the Garden in and other miscellany

An accomplishful day so far! My handyman Rick helped me truck the tomato planters over to the patio, and he mucked out the barn, which I just haven't been able to get to since spring. We also got the broody hen into a cage with her eggs and got her back into the same corner where she was in the greenhouse. She pitched a fit at first but when I went back to check on her she was on the nest. I set her up with shade and a fan. Phase one. In a day or two I will move the cage to wherever I figure out I want her to be - probably into the "overflow coop" where Z's hens spent the winter and where the rabbit (in a cage) is now. If she does hatch any chicks, it will be a safe place for her to raise them. Everyone keep their fingers crossed for a successful hatching!
I also shoveled and moved 5 cartloads of composted manure, which I figure weighed about 100 pounds a load, over to the new garden beds Rick built last fall and I planted two flats of squash, Spaghetti and Buttercup. I watered well and mulched it deep with straw and shredded paper to try to keep down the weeds. Maybe tomorrow I'll rake more straw out of the second coop to layer it a little thicker on the second raised bed, but right now I'm pretty much done in! I had wanted to do the sheet mulching technique I learned in a class this spring, but it didn't happen this year - too much else going on so the traditional method will have to do. (Maybe next year.) The spaghetti squash has little tendrils, so it looks like I need to put up some trellising for it to climb on.
The veggie plants are now all in the ground. I still have a few more herbs to get into pots and some flowers to get into the ground, but I'm close to finishing getting the garden in for the year. The two grapevines and one of the two blueberry bushes I planted have sprouted new leaves, so that is encouraging. And to think all of this came about because I wanted to have alpacas to spin the wool to knit with, and then decided I had to do something with all the alpaca manure I was accumulating!

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