Posts Tagged ‘seeds’

I may have gone a little wild with the end of season sales. 🙂

(And the hubs got me the variety pack from Baker Creek!)

YEAH! It’s like Christmas all over again!

 

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Let me start by saying, I can’t wait for my baby to get here!! 🙂

The nursery is prepped, I’m big, partially immobile, and baby is kicking like a champ! We can’t wait to meet him!

Then I’ll say, I’m feeling stifled, and a tad frustrated today. Normally, I sail through this time of year cleaning seedling trays, organizing seeds, and generally being excited about the upcoming season. This year, I’m 8 months pregnant, and all that business requires energy that I just don’t have. *harumph* So I’m pouty.

I’m told it’s totally normal to feel like a big, ol’ lump during this time of pregnancy. What I wasn’t prepared for was the weird brain numbness you get. I just can’t remember anything! And then there’s the cold, and the snow, and the inability to get up off the couch without assistance. For a Type-A, usually-has-it-all-together, always-on-the-move type of gal, this whole business is a tough pill to swallow.

So, I laid in bed last night ruminating on all the things I need to do in preparation for the spring. There’s a ton, and I’m certain I won’t remember them all. But, for therapeutic reasons, I figured I would share some of them here, and perhaps my readers might have suggestions and tips on ways of reducing my workload prior to and just after Baby gets here. So here goes!

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1. Separate Rhubarb Crowns: I have beautiful rhubarb that’s been here, probably as long as the house has. Unfortunately, when we had our roof put on, the roofers didn’t seem to care about the crowns, and trampled them….seriously trampled them…I’m praying not to death. The soil needs re-worked because it’s now compacted, and the crowns are large and over-stuffed, so as soon as they start to come out of dormancy, I’d like to split the crowns, and rejuvenate the soil. *Fingers crossed there’s anything left of them*

2. Prepare chicken accessories for the high tunnel: I’ve been wracking my brain on the best way to accommodate all the new girls coming in a few months, that will be housed in one of our tunnels. It’s the perfect set up. They work the soil, kill the sod and bugs, and fertilize, while I recover. Come fall, we can move them to the other tunnel,  prep the soil, and plant cover crop. But, we need nesting boxes, waterers, roosts, etc., for them to be able to stay in there. As today is my day off, I’ve spent a significant time googling, and here’s what I’ve come up with:

Nesting boxes:

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Feeders:

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Roosts:

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All portable, and temporary. Perfect for high tunnel chickens! Now, just to come up with a clever watering system.

3. Figure out how to water plants in the high-tunnel: We have enough drip tape for one high tunnel, but the nearest water source is 300 feet away. That’s a lot of garden hose to stretch across the yard. So, I’m trying to figure out a rain catchment/watering system that doesn’t involve water from the faucet. Keeping in mind that we also don’t have electric run either. I’m thinking rain barrel, drip tape, solar-powered pump. I don’t have it quite together yet, though. Anyone have ideas?!

4. Usual chores: And of course, I won’t be able to run the tiller, shovel, bend over, or just be useful overall, until about June. Way too late in the season to start bed prep, and get seedlings planted. So, we either miss out on A LOT of things I like to grow, or I find volunteers/inexpensive help to take over where I can’t once the weather breaks. (I think this is the most nerve-wracking part for me!)

5. General prep: Regardless of how tired I am, I need to get off my hind-end and get the pots/trays washed up, the grow lights set up, and my seeds organized. Because, although I don’t have enough brain power to remember exactly when I’m supposed to start everything, I know there are a few things (onions, leeks, celery, eggplant) that will need started sooner, rather than later.

123Last year’s onion sprouts dated 2/29/12 *sigh*

Well, I think those are the most recent farm-related things weighing on my mind. And now I feel better. 🙂 Thanks for humoring me.

*I’m open to suggestions for ways to reduce labor this coming growing season, so if you have any tips or tricks, please share!

**We’re also accepting volunteers!!

-Linde

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Welp. It’s January already! Seeding starting time is just around the corner. And I. Cant. Wait! I was quite spoiled this Christmas by Farmer Rich. I got a sampler pack of heirloom seeds from Baker Creek (my favorite GMO-free, heirloom seed provider.)

049There’s a little bit of everything in this can! 50 packets ranging from pumpkins to flowers. I can’t wait to get them started!

In other SUPER exciting news, we’ve placed our order for our high tunnels and they should be up by late March or early April. Wahoooooo! We decided to go with a small, up-and-coming, local company called TunnelVision Hoops. They do quality work. (We know, because we visited one of their tunnels, not knowing it was theirs, and Rich and I both started drooling! :)) And they’re really active in the sustainable, locally grown food movement, especially in the Cleveland area. We’re meeting with them on Tuesday to finalize the plans, so stay tuned. I can’t wait!!

We’ve also placed an order, along with our super supportive neighbor, Mel, for 13 chicks that will be hatched out February 4th. What are we getting, you ask? (The following pictures are all from Meyer Hatchery, where we ordered from. Click on the link to go directly to their info page about that chicken.)

australorpAustralorps: This is the variety of our Flo. She’s our best layer by far. She’s laid consistently, except for a few weeks while she molted. So, I figured you can’t go wrong with  a few more strong layers! They lay brown eggs.

goldenwyan Golden Laced Wyandottes: Beautiful, hardy, and lay light brown eggs.

SLWS1 Silver Laced Wyandottes: Isn’t she gorgeous! Also hardy and a good layer of brown eggs.

AMAS1 Easter Eggers: These ladies are fun!  They come in all shapes, and colors, and lay various shades of blue and green eggs! (The egg is the same, just the shell is fun colored!)

Because OUR baby is due in March, Mel’s offered to raise our little chickadees until they’re big enough to be outside. At that point we’ll have the high tunnels up, and plan to use them in one of the tunnels to help turn the soil and fertilize, while we prep the other one. So, we should have eggs for sale, consistently, starting in August or September. I can’t even explain to you how giddy I am about all this. 🙂 Thank you, neighbor Mel! You TRULY are the BEST!!

In other news, we’re in prep mode for our new little farm hand to arrive. I’m due at the end of March, but all signs point to me going earlier (fingers crossed!). I had my Ohio baby shower this weekend, and it was lovely. Everyone was so generous. We feel loved. But who knew such a tiny baby needed so much stuff!? Now the task is to find places to put it all in our tiny farm house. Regardless, we can’t wait for our little bean to get here. ❤  My parents came out for the weekend to attend the shower. My mom, the most talented woman I know, offered to paint something special in our nursery (appropriately green and woodland animal themed). So we decided on a tree with owls to go on the wall with the crib. Here’s a sneak-peek:

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I’ll be sure to give you the complete tour once it’s finished. In the meantime, a great, BIG, Thank you to my Momma! I know the baby will love it. 🙂 We can’t wait until it’s done.

So, that about covers what we’ve been up to these days. We’ll just keep getting busier as the months pass, and the baby comes! If any of my readers in the Cleveland area like to get your hands dirty, we are happy to take volunteers, especially since I’ll be out of commission a few weeks into planting season. Comment, or send us a message if you think you might be interested! We’d be happy to reward you with yummy, fresh vegetables.

Check back soon!

Linde

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20121202-163932.jpgI’d like to take a moment, and send a great BIG THANK YOU, to Matt, from Jimmy Cracked Corn, for mailing us a packet of his homegrown, home-saved Cabin tomato seeds. He’s had great success growing this variety, which is reportedly quite rare. He and his family enjoyed it so much so that he mailed us, and a number of other fellow bloggers a packet! How nice!! So, return the kindness on our behalf, and check out his blog at Jimmy Cracked Corn, to learn more about these tomatoes!

I can’t wait to get growing!! Thanks again, Matt!

-Linde

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What ISN’T happening?! That’s the question!

Rich and I spent the weekend constructing our new chicken coop from the free crates I got last week. It’s beautiful today, and it’s my day off! What luck! So, I painted the inside and roof of the coop. We hope to get it outside for the girls this weekend.

I also started all the seeds I could indoors (peppers, tomatoes, eggplant, greens, cabbage, etc.) We’re keeping them under fluorescent lights in the guest room. So, it’s more greenhouse than bedroom at the moment, but it works. 🙂 We got all our potatoes in the mail, so I have them “sunning” on shelving I set up in the guestroom. (This helps encourage sprouting.)

I know I’m pressing my luck, but I sowed some radish and various greens in the cold frames today. I hope we get a jump start, and not frost nipped greens. I also moved the cold hardy seedlings, I started a few weeks ago, from the guest room greenhouse, to the breezeway. (An unheated, enclosed room off the back of our house.) Hopefully they’ll hardy-up, and I can put those in the portable greenhouse this weekend.

Wooo! I think I covered it all. Check out the slide show above for a picture version of what’s been happening.

Less than 2 weeks until spring!!

-Linde

 

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Welcome to Collingwood Farm’s first blog post! If you’d like our full story, check out the “About” page.

So what’s happening on our farm this week? Well… it looks like Spring!

We’ve been trying to take advantage of the lovely weather by building cold frames, and putting up the portable greenhouse. We also started quite a few seeds, including onions, greens, leeks, eggplant, tomatoes and peppers indoors. Normally, it would be a little early to start some of these veggies, but with the way the weather has been this winter, we don’t want to miss the opportunity to get some early vegetables! Our onions are already sprouting!

We’d like to take a moment and thank our newly subscribed, and greatly supportive CSA members. We hope to provide you with bountiful fresh, tasty goodness that we’ve come to expect from our farm.

Check back soon!

-Linde

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