4 Day Weekends – Hooray!

Yummy radishes!

Well, it’s been a busy week and weekend around the farmlette.  It’s been nice to have an extra day….but, that day was solely spent doing more work.  What’s the phrase?  Oh yes….”Sleep when you’re dead.”  Lots of work to the yard, garden and chicken coop.  Unfortunately, there is still much work to be done.

On the garden front:  The last raised bed is finished!  I planted sweet potatoes, lima beans, a pumpkin, and some more tomatoes, beets, and peppers.  I finally got all of the new raspberries and blackberries in the ground as well.  They seem to be over the transplant shock and are already growing.  I finished laying down newspaper, straw and concrete aisles in the aisles of the garden and it’s starting to actually look like a garden that’s behaving itself instead of a garden-gone-wild exhibition.

The garden - new raised beds!

And our lovely new compost bin - thanks DH!

I got the potatoes squared away.  They had gotten so big and so heavy that they’d all toppled over and were laying in the walkway to the compost.  So, I put up some fencing along the edge of the bed and tied them up to it.  Since doing that, I think they’ve grown another 6 inches.  I picked the first bushel of beans (contender) and can’t wait to fry them up with some basil, garlic and butter!  I think an early row of beans followed a month later by two more rows is the perfect way to space out their bounty.  I’ll get a bunch more just when I’m ready to begin the canning season.  (Oh, I got a new pressure canner this week, too!)

Headed for the canner....

I sprayed all of the fruit trees and plants in the garden with liquid seaweed.  I staked a few more peppers and tomatoes that had gotten so big that they’d succumbed to gravity.  I’ll need to buy some bean trellises tomorrow…as they’re already up and growing.  Not sure if I’m going to end up putting the squash, etc. on trellises or just let them ramble on into the grass?? And, as soon as school is out, I’m going to work on getting some clover and grass growing down in the orchard instead of all those pokeweeds.

On the coop front:  Not going to lie, the coop has become a little frustrating.  While I really like the idea of repurposing an existing structure, it’s really difficult to know what you’re going to use and need when you tackle something like this.  I believe that WW and I have been to Lowe’s every day for the last month.  Just when we think we’re going to make some real progress we realize that we need a specific tool, piece of hardware, or other and have to truck up 29 North.  I think building a coop would have been a much quicker task if we’d purchased plans and then tried to find free wood based on the plans.  That being said, we’re stuck with what we’ve begun and progress is slow but it is happening.  We finished the foundation and put the first and second stories together.  Then, we added the side and back walls to the first floor.   Once we did this, it seemed like all the animals wanted a piece of the action….

Georgia supervising the action.

The rest of the weekend was spent painting the interior of the second story and exterior, caulking the exterior, cutting the vinyl for the second story, planning where to put the ramp and nestbox, and building the windows.  My neck is very sore from standing on a ladder and reaching through the side windows to paint the second story.  And, it still needs one more coat of paint tomorrow.  Ugh.  I hope these chickens know the pain we’re putting our bodies through for them.  Tomorrow, we’ll put up the windows and the window trim.  Then, we’ll probably only need one more month to finish the whole thing.  I wish I was being sarcastic there.