Sunday on the Homestead

Hey Everyone!

We just never stop being incredibly busy around here. The baking business is doing well (which means more work) and the garden is doing well (which means more work) and we got a ton of rain (which means a lot of weeds). Not that I’m complaining, everything seems to be doing really well, so I’m pretty happy with it!

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Made Strawberry-Rhubarb Jam last week! I got 39 half pints out of my flat of strawberries. I would have gotten more but it was extremely hot and humid, so we had mold growing at an extreme rate. I lost three quarts of strawberries to it, but the jam is great! We’re selling some down at the Farmer’s Market and people seem to be pretty excited about it!

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We mound (mounded?) up the dirt around the potatoes and mulched them in with some old straw we had. That should keep the weeds down and bit and also get us more potatoes! They are growing pretty fast now with all the rain we had!

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Got my first 2 blueberries today! They were pretty decent as far as blueberries go. I’m not a huge blueberry person, but they aren’t bad. I’m happy the plants are doing well though!

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The climbing roses we put in bloomed a bit! The yellow were the first ones to bloom as you can see. We have another bush that is Pink with yellow centers, I’m pretty excited about those ones. I do like roses, I’ve just never been able to have any.

Other than that, we are attempting to weed the beds. We have the cabbage/lettuce/beet bed almost done. The kale/broccoli/cucumber/herb bed is almost done. The potatoes are done. Next I have to thin the corn out a bit, weed it, then weed the other beds. Unfortunately I’m going to have some issues avoiding flower seeds that seem to have never sprouted, but they could have been choked out by the weeds, I have no idea.

We still have a very large patch in one bed that has NOTHING in it….I’m not really sure what to do with it. The weeds come up too fast to plant flowers from seed and I don’t have any more grass mulch because our mower won’t properly bag it. I’m not sure if I should just cardboard the area and forget about it until next year or what. I also don’t want to put perennials in there because I may include more vegetables next year and I’ll need the space. I never put in my parsnips, my carrots did not come up and I didn’t put in dill yet, so there still might be hope for that area, we’ll see.

Also, I have a TON of these little flies on my fruit trees. They are black, small and usually have white butts. I think they are fruit flies. Got any organic ways of getting rid of them? They don’t seem like they are doing damage, but they don’t want to get off the plants either.

Have a good weekend and a happy father’s day! Oh, and happy Midsummer!

Don’t forget to subscribe.

Ben

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10 Comments Add yours

  1. Shawnee May says:

    All of your hard work appears to be paying off…your jam looks splendid! I’m enclosing a link for natural remedy’s and care of fruit trees…hope it helps. http://www.small-farm-permaculture-and-sustainable-living.com/fruit_trees_and_homemade_pest.html

  2. Jonnie says:

    Glad you are keeping busy,😁, as tiring, and stressful at it can sometimes be, it’s so much better than being bored. Try companion planting, put your carrots, in with your tomatoes.they aid each other, and both preform better when placed together. The empty plot should be amended, for the plants you want to put there next year. Both tomatoes and roses, love coffee grounds, and banana peels. The nitrogen, from the grounds, and the potassium from the peels are like a growth booster. My daughter gave me a cherry tomato plant for mother’s day. It was about ten inches tall. I repotted it, adding bananas, and coffee grounds, and it is now four and a half feet tall. It’s loaded with tomatoes, and we have tied it up three times already, just to hold the limbs up. If you get a chance, try some pear tomatoes. They are fantastic. If you find any black tomatoes, let me know where, so I can order some. Some green ones Wil give you a treat, and you’ll want to grow them year round. My southern roots are showing.😁

    1. It’s definitely a lot better than being bored! We do have some yellow pear tomatoes in and I’m definitely going to expand next year and try other varieties!

      1. Jonnie says:

        I forgot, the amendments don’t have to be composted first, because you are not going to use it until next year. You can cover it all, with cardboard, then wet the cardboard down. You can add grass, leaves, twigs, etc…, on top of the cardboard to hasten the composting of it all. Don’t add things in the fall or winter as it has to be fifty degrees, our higher to compost. Otherwise you wind up with a big mess come time to plant. The perennial plants need to be covered with straw, and covered with a small tent of thick plastic, while they are dormant, to save them from damage by the colder weather. About your fly problem, my great grandmother used all homemade, organic pesticides.. the mixes varied by the plant, and pest. Some were upfront the plants, some were put around the plant. The ones I remember the most were put around the plant/tree. Soak lemon in vinegar for about a month, then remove the peels, stick several cloves into the peel, and lay them, or hang them where they are needed. Do this after pollination has taken place, bees tend to avoid the places they are put. Some birds, etc.. avoid the smell too. Tandy it good for keeping members of the rodent family, I.e. squirrels, rabbits, moles, gophers, etc.. away as well. Just do not let children, or pets eat it, as it is poisonous, when raw. Just growing it around the areas will keep them away.

  3. Jonnie says:

    I forgot again. Dang getting older sucks purple peanut butter!!! Remember to replace the lemon peels often, when they dry out they become Lee’s effective. Go to your local library, and check out the books on Organic Pesticides, for more tricks.

  4. What about a lasagna bed for your empty bed? It should smother out the weeds. I lay cardboard, then browns, greens, straw, and you can put all your weeds in it. Leave it all season and it will be ready to plant in for next year. Your blueberries look amazing! I remember them from months ago. How is your fig? I just bought one this week-end and I was curious about yours.

    1. The figs are doing great! I’ve got them out in the sun now, so they are very happy. I should take a picture of them! I also found some popcorn (in bulk) at a local farm market today, so I’m going to plant all the unused area in blue popcorn!

  5. Grower says:

    That rose is beautiful! I think yellow roses are my favorite. (But it will be a cold day in Amarillo before I’ll live in Texas!) Keep up the good work and enjoy the season. Happy Solstice!

  6. Ray Dawson says:

    Great pictures and a great post. Thanks.

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