Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Fall planting begins

Well, I finally had some time this morning to get out and begin my Fall plantings. Going a bit conservative this time and only planting 3 items: romaine lettuce, deer tongue lettuce and turnip greens. (As I write this, I don't remember which tray is which now.... In my haste, I did not label the trays and also accidentally watered my seed packets, so they are on the counter drying out. Will have to wait until the seeds sprout to label each tray.) I had pretty good luck with the turnips last year, so I am hoping that they will go even better this time with the proper care.

My father in law is scaling his gardening down a bit and redoing his compost bin. As a result, he will have quite a few concrete blocks left over that he is giving me. Now I will be able to construct a bin where all the stuff I throw in will stay in there instead of rolling off the hill!

I picked up a good read from the local library that I think is worth sharing. "A Short History of the Honey Bee" by E. Readicker-Henderson discusses the importance of bees to our food supply, their origins, the sweet honey they produce, and the threats they face today's society. The writing is light (poetic, maybe?), mainly focusing on the bees' and never staying too long on the threats of big agriculture, pesticides, etc. If you can find a copy, I recommend picking it up.

Until next time!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

A long wait...

I find myself in a bit of gardening withdrawal these days. The summers here in FL bring a hiatus to much planting and growing as the heat and lack of rain make it less than worth the effort. Each morning when I walk outside to feed the dog, I walk back to the garden patch and stare at the bare soil, a lone bean plant still hanging on (and still amazingly producing) with no care from me. I run my stirrup hoe thru the dirt to keep the few weeds and grass at bay, dreaming of the produce to come next season.

My plans are to try my hand at growing greens and lettuce this fall. I had mild success last fall (managed to get a large pot full of turnips; they were quite good, but needed a more thorough washing (crunch!)).

I also want to get some apple trees this year, if the budget will allow. There are many that will grow in our Florida climate, and I see it as a fun and interesting challenge to see if I could get a small orchard going on my property. Perhaps some blueberries as well, and bees... bees would be good too, since I saw only 2 bees this year total. And goats, my wife likes goats, but is unsure if she wants to raise them (she loves, LOVES goat cheese, so that might be the hook that reels her in).

Anyway, not to worry, I am not planning all this at one time... but more and more, the call of the farm speaks louder every day.

Will keep you updated.

Thanks for stopping by.