Saturday, October 15, 2011

Fall Clean Up (part one)

This wasn't part of fall cleanup, but I had the picture, so here it is...  I tried out a new french bread recipe and we all liked it quite a bit, plus it was less work overall than the "artisan bread in 5-minutes-a-day" recipe that I was using.  It made three pretty nice sized loaves.  

We pulled out all the corn.  The cobs that were still on the stalks we are saving to feed to the chickens.  They're mostly dried out, but the chickens don't seem to mind.  So we'll let the rest of these dry out and give them out a few at a time.  Our corn patch actually produced quite a few ears, but I never thinned it, so the ears are all tiny, and it was hard to get into it to pick much.  We also cut off the sunflower heads.  I'll save some seed to plant more next year, and the rest I think I'm going to try roasting.  If it turns out well, we'll plant them more seriously next year.

I was hoping for a better butternut squash harvest, and there were only two jarrahdale squash, but we ended up with more pumpkins than I thought we'd get, considering our watering system didn't work out quite as well as we hoped it would.  

We picked the dried beans, we'll let them finish drying out, and shell them, and save the seed for next year.  This is my first year saving bean seeds, so I'm not sure how much I need, I'll post an update when we shell them.

We cleaned all the wet, gross, smelly wood shavings out of the chicken coop and replaced them with new, clean, dry shavings.  It smells so much better in there!  We also added a roost bar to help them get to the two side nesting boxes.  They were piling up in the middle box half the time instead of going in the other two.  Silly birds.  

My Mister ran the corn stalks through the chipper, and we added that, and the poo/shavings from the chicken coop to the big pile of grass (from when we mowed the field and RAKED THE WHOLE THING (that was fun).  Now we just need a rain to moisten the whole thing and it will really get hot.  There is already some nice compost in the bottom from just the grass.

Here's a before shot of where the chicken run used to be:

And here's where it is now- we moved the run and the little feeding area lean-to so that the chickens could scratch a new area, the whole thing was getting stinky, so hopefully some fresh land helps, and lets the old area recover a little.  In the spring we can move them back

I left two pumpkins in the garden since they were still green.  A smaller one, and then this HUGE one.  I  don't think it will turn orange in time for halloween, but I'm hoping we can get it pureed and in the freezer.  

Things to do another weekend:  
Weed whack strawberries, and cover with mulch 
Clean out raised beds
Save seeds from artichoke plants (if the things would ever flower!)
Pull the last of the onions
Put away watering system tubes
Prep and plant garlic bed
Clear out blackcap bed, and add compost
Pick grapes and do grape juice
Check bees 

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