Friday, March 16, 2012

Early Spring

     This has been an unusually mild March.  The spring flowers are already well out of the ground and the spring peepers fill the night air with their constant singing.  I just read an article about the effects of pesticides on the frog population and I am thankful that the pond is not affected.  I would miss this herald of warmer weather. Just one more reason to grow things without chemicals.
    Jeanna and I spent some time in the afternoon setting fence posts for the new south pasture.  The ground is so soft that the metal posts easily push into the ground.  Only 14 to go and we can string the wire.  It needs to dry up more before we let the horses out to enjoy the new grass.  The yearlings hooves especially will tear up the ground.  Our pony Sarah Jane has small feet too but she is a much more reserved lady of 24 unlike the babies who will no doubt kick up their heels and run around wildly.  We took a break from working to brush some of the mud off their coats and Jeanna tried her new bareback pad on Sarah Jane.  We also saddled up Molly and she took a few turns in the riding area.
     It was warm enough to pull a table out onto the back terrace and start some seeds.  We completed the yellow onion sets and brussel sprouts.  Both heirloom varieties will fill our needs and hopefully be popular at the stand and market.  Our favorite way to prepare the sprouts is simple. We toss them with olive oil, salt and pepper and roast them in the oven at 400 degrees until tender.  Today I start double digging the vegetable garden bed to ready it for the spinach and peas.  They will go in the ground this weekend.  It won't be long until  we taste the first fruits (or vegetable in this case) of our efforts.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Weekend Enjoyment

Saturday morning allows for a leisurely cup of coffee gazing out my kitchen window accross the backyard to the trees and meadows beyond.  The sun scatters the shadow of the white picket fence accross the bare lawn with golden yellow stripes.  The sun was up before me and I woke to the sound of grackles perched on the chimney of my bedroon fireplace.  It acts as a megaphone streaming down their clicks and whistles as they warm themselves on the air that escapes up the chimney.  They are the beneficiaries of a less efficient furnace.  The kitchen table is scattered with tasks left for the weekend.  I take a moment to start the fire in the living room then settle back at the table to plan a new day.  First I prepare my tree order to Schlabach's Nursery.  We have decided upon 1 Liberty Apply, 1 Veteran Peach, 2 Jubileum Cherry(tart), and 1 Black Gold Cherry(sweet).  They have been selected for their cold hardiness , disease resistance and storage life.  That makes 10 trees total in our fledgiling orchard.  We dream of the day when it supplies all of our needs for the bakery and our own pantrys.  I will not rush the days until then, or today.  The seasons pass quickly enough.  The sun is already higher on the horizon.  I am on my second cup of coffee and it's time to leave contemplation for more productive thoughts.