The fourth month on our homestead will be The Pivotal Month on which things took a significant turn for us ~ but more on that in a minute.
First off here are some of the highlights:
Major additions to the homestead:
Our windbreak in its infant form. We ordered and received 100 bareroot arborvitae seedlings from the state forestry department to be planted along our fence line. Arborvitaes are not my favorite, but they are recommended for windbreaks, screen plantings, and are reported to be drought and clay soil tolerant. They are still neatly packaged in our garage awaiting the proper time for planting. As a temporary stopgap we’ve erected a small silt fence, and taken to using floating row covers to prevent as much wind burn as we can.
Major events included:
A snowstorm with snow that actually accumulated. It didn’t last, but it was pretty, and the water from the sky in one form or another is beginning to fill our dry pond. The pond has attracted some migrating wild geese which have been fun to watch.
February 15 marked the start of the cool crop planting season. After working six weeks to grow strong cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, and Swiss chard transplants, we set them out and then promptly lost most of them.
I learned two things the hard way:
1. Just because it is the start of the season doesn’t mean that things can be set out on day one.
2. What grew just fine and dandy in our old neighborhood, may not do as well out here on an exposed plain.
3. (ok I learned three things ) Double check the recommended planting dates and don’t rely on memory. After setting out and then subsequently losing the broccoli, I remembered broccoli isn’t to be planted until March. ::facepalm:: I still can’t believe I did that…
The arrival of the planting season and our emphasis this year on the garden brings with it a slight adjustment:
I no longer have a gardening day, cleaning day, sewing day, and work on the blog day. Everything is pretty much scheduled according to the weather with the gardening taking precedence; and even then, the weather can be unpredictable. For an inflexible A type, this is not easy, much as I love to work in the garden.
Last summer, my husband and I decided that he should take an extended leave from his successful job as a self employed computer consultant so that we could see if we can work together as full time market growers.
Today is his last day.
When I pick him up this afternoon at the airport, it will hopefully be for the last time.
I know there are people who think we’re absolutely nuts. Perhaps we are. But we do have a number of significant reasons for why we decided to give this a try, all of which will be devoted to another post.
We also have a number of things going through our mind:
I will admit to having some anxiety. We’ve calculated the risk but as anyone who grows anything knows, we’re at the mercy of a few things over which we have no control. Things like drought, ice storms, and wind. Every time I walk through our garden I say a simple little prayer “Just ignore the wind and grow please.”
On the other side of the coin however, we feel confident. We feel that this is what we are supposed to do and this is the time we are supposed to do it. We are both dedicated, and committed 110% to doing whatever it takes to make it work.
We’re also pretty excited about what is in store and consider ourselves to be blessed that we are able to make this change.
Husbie will be here full time. He plans to finish the chicken coop, continue fencing the garden, and building more “berms” as we expand our garden.
We’ve been doing research on cover crops and will begin to make plans to plant one for the warmer season.
We’ll start planting that windbreak, and continue moving forward with the planting of our cool season crops. We’re eyeing a young but very large patch of spinach and if we’re lucky it will be ready for the market in a month’s time.
Find this post and others like it linked to: The Homeacre Hop, Simple Lives Thursday, Rurality Blog Hop, Farm Girl Blog Fest, Farmgirl Friday Blog Hop, The Ole Saturday Homesteading Trading Post, The Homestead Barn Hop,Homemade Mondays, The Scoop The Backyard Farming Connection Hop, Tuesday Garden Party, Frugal Days Sustainable Ways, Eat Make Grow, , Tuesday Greens