We've had more rain at one time than I had ever seen in north Texas. This was great for the garden but a little hard for outdoor projects on the homestead.
We're into full blown summer now so we have to pace ourselves. No outside work after 10am. After then the sun beats you senseless.
Garden: Beautiful harvests! Beans, peas, potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, strawberries, and kale. The only disappointment this year was my lettuce. Overnight, tiny lettuce loopers devoured my entire bed of lettuce. It's too hot now to replant so I might try again later in the year.
My fruit trees continue to disappoint. I do great with small fruits like strawberries and blackberries, but tree fruit success continues to evade me. I honestly don't know what I'm doing wrong. The trees look great. Beautiful and bushy, but no fruit. (Yes, I have pollinators.)
I intend to persevere and try again in 2016.
My herbs did well this year too, but once again, the cilantro bolted as soon as it warmed up. I'm going to try growing it indoors to see if I can get it to produce during the summer. We eat too much of it to have it in such limited supply.
The most successful (and delicious) crop this year were the red potatoes. Man, they are good! You almost don't need butter.
The snow peas were also delicious. Even though I planted a lot, it wasn't near enough to freeze. Must plant again in the fall.
I got a lot of French beans, but honestly, I didn't care for them. I guess I expected a more delicate flavor. I might try a different variety next time.
Chickens: A failed experiment with the Australorps. I have a broody hen so I decided to give her a chance to sit on a few eggs.
Alas, she had the best intentions, but poor technique. She accidentally destroyed four of her eggs. Four we removed by mistake. (Greg didn't know I had marked them.) The last two look like duds.
In this picture, she cracked one of the eggs. What was sad is that the little guy would've been born in two days.
I love the Australorps. They're excellent layers and calm birds. The Marans lay prettier dark brown eggs, but the Australorps are more dependable.
Goats: We're serious about downsizing this year. If we want to travel, we'll have to get down to just a couple of goats. Last week we sold our "No-Name" buck.
He is a beauty. Originally, we were going to keep him and put Ray Charles in the freezer, but almost overnight, Ray Charles came into his own. He isn't as big as his cousin, but he's sweet and easy to handle having had so much attention as a baby. He'll still go in the freezer later on, but for now he's received a reprieve.
The goat we sold went to a man who wanted new blood for his herd.
Is it strange for me to say that I hated to part with "No-Name"? I hope he likes his new home and I hope they're good to him.
Greg reminds me that the man paid top dollar for him so I shouldn't worry so much.
Still, I don't want my goats to go to bad homes. I want their new owners to treat them well and give them regular worming and hoof trimming.
Life goes on at the homestead. The past few weeks have been especially hard on Greg since he's had to do so much of the work himself while I was injured. I've regained some use of my hand, but I bandage it if I have to do any outside work because it's still tender and easy to re-injure.
|Photoshop magic. He could lift it, but he wouldn't be smiling.|
There's a class in blacksmithing in the big city. Maybe I can get him enrolled in that once he stops driving to Casa South.
Is anyone gardening this year? What were your winners and losers? Anything you'd like to recommend?
Have you ever sold something with misgivings? Or am I being too sentimental?