My Father’s Day Gift

My son took the Phantom drone with the GoPro and did a 2016 early summer update of the farm.  The garden is in and the endless battle with the weeds has commenced.  We are staying ahead of it and the rains have stopped so we may get the upper hand.  I have had numerous requests for flyovers on You Tube so Aaron was nice enough to take the helm and then edit it together (something I know nothing about).

You will see that the farmer across the road came over and began plowing up the back 30 acres.  The green patch on the right is a drainage area that turns into quite a swamp and mosquito nursery when it rains.  It’s not really fit for canoeing (haha!).  It is fun though when it does flood because the toads out here that go dormant until it gets wet, come out and start chirping like a huge choir.

The outdoor garden is planted with 2 kinds of melons, 3 kinds of winter squash, carrots, onions, red onions, beets, 2 kinds of potatoes, black beans, white beans, string beans, sweet potatoes, and asparagus.  The greenhouse has 7 kinds of peppers, 5 kinds of tomatoes, lettuce, broccoli, cauliflower, cucumbers, basil, rosemary, oregano, parsley, marjoram,  tarragon, tomatillos, and chives.  We added blueberry and blackberry plants outside of the greenhouse this year as well.

I have been laid up with a couple of issues after having shoveled some 6 tons of compost onto the garden you will see in the clip below.  The muscle relaxers have helped but they make me feel pretty loopy.

In any case, I hope you enjoy the video.  JAZ Farm is now in maintenance mode.  It was great to see my mom and sister the last couple of weeks.  Now we look forward to the arrival of Zina’s sister, brother-in-law and niece over the 4th of July weekend.

Thanks for all of your interest and thanks for following along!

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The Tractor Is Coming To Save Us On Taxes!

So the neighbor farmer across the road lived up to his billing.  Today after we sent my mom and sister back from whence they came, we got home to see the big John Deere discing up our back thirty.  What a relief.  We have enough to concern ourselves with than having to wonder what to do with the big back field in order to not have to pay residential taxes on 40 acres.  We are also going to use the proceeds of the land lease and pay it back to them so they will mow our front 10 acres in order to have some fire suppression when all of the “cheat” grass dries up.  That stuff turns to a flash fire hazard as soon as their seeds dry.

So thanks again to my mother for all of her help planting, especially when I hurt my back.  Note to self:  one need not rake and till the compost in on the big garden all in one day.  Sincerely, your smarter self…. idiot.

It was so great to have my sister here to see the farm for the first time as well.  We had to be very watchful of her to make sure she didn’t steal my dog!  They hit it off pretty good and Basil is now looking around wondering where everyone went.

So the field is plowed, the gardens are planted, the animals are all doing quite well too.  I’ll post a picture later but we hooked up our fifth wheel’s solar charger to an inverter out by the broiler’s chicken tractor and plugged in a fan to help keep them cool.  As I type it is around 90 degrees.  Gotta keep the critters comfortable!

 

We Did It!!

Everything happens the last weekend in May and the first week of June.  The goal is to get the gardens planted by the first week of June and Jon, Zina, Grandma and Aaron did it!  The drip irrigation is all hooked up on both the big root garden and the greenhouse and surrounding beds. They are all on timers and will come on early in the morning and mid evening until the seedlings are all up and established.  After that, depending on the heat factor, we will probably go back to just mornings.

The broilers are also now out in their chicken tractor and that seems to be THE way to go.  By moving it the length of itself each day the birds get to have clean grass to live on and it avoids the problems of having to constantly clean up after them like one does with a cat litter box.  We put up an electric poultry net around it to keep the neighbor dogs, our dog, the barn cats, and the coyotes and foxes away from them.  All in all, if you are going to raise chickens for meat and want to do it on grass, this is the best bet.

Chicks in the Tractor 2016 2chicks in the tractor 2016 3chicks in the tractor 2016

So we are all exhausted.  I did manage to wrench my back pretty badly so now I’m forced to lay flat until these muscles loosen up.  That’s the penalty for farming in your 50’s I guess.  Grandma was a trooper too.  We just had wine and griped about our aches and pains afterward!  But the major projects are done!

We even had the farmer from across the road come over and ask to farm our back 30.  This will save us a ton on property taxes and also help kind of rebuild the soil.  It will be nice to have the land used in a more sustainable way as he uses a “no tilling” method.  The first year it needs to be plowed and disced but after that there will be a rotation of 4 crops and a fallow year in the 5th.  He will begin by planting Wheat then Milo, then Millet, then Sunflowers.  I am looking forward to a field full of big yellow flowers!

Here is the most recent You Tube update.  Thanks for stopping by!