Wild Things Farm

  (Crab Orchard, Tennessee)
Farm life adventures of the Happy Hoer
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Winter chores and a wildflower walk

Winter chores are nothing new.  While on the way home from town Friday, I noticed that the 36" culverts that carry the canal through my property were sort of getting overgrown and close to getting clogged up....

stoppedupculvertswebIt's way easier to clean out a culvert BEFORE it gets clogged with everything that culverts get clogged up with.  After chainsawing for about 30 minutes and piling everything up in between the culverts, I was able to get a small fire started to burn the debris....

fireatculvertswebOnce the fire went out I had a small bucket of glass bottles, a tractor bucket load of firewood, 2 clean culverts and a good workout!

I checked the beehive and was so happy to see that it was FULL of bees and they were BUSY!

After planting 6 flats of assorted greens; lettuce, kale, mustard, and braising mix in the large high tunnel, I threw several bags of leaves into the chicken pen to keep the girls out of the mud.  They love scratching in the leaves and will spread a pile of them in no time.

THEN I had promised the girls I would clean out their coop and put fresh leaves in there.  It's amazing how much quicker their coops get pooped out in the winter when they are stuck inside during cold weather.

dirtychickencoop2.21.14web

 

cleaningchickencoop2.21.14web

I used hay last time for their bedding.  I won't do that again.  It turns into a solid mat that has to be chopped apart AND I had to put it in a separate compost area because I know how many weeds can germinate from hay--BUT it was all I could get at the time.  I refloored their coop with fresh dry leaves from my stash.   It smells wonderful.

Today was a gorgeous day so Hattie (the dog), Bandit (the girl kitty) and I decided to take a late afternoon wildflower walk.  There really are wild things to look at this time of year, and some are even starting to grow (I'm so excited!)  Here's a visual of our afternoon journey.

streamandbluffbehindhouse2.22.14webThis is a very cool bluff right behind the house.  The stream you see is it....it comes out from under the rocks where I was standing and goes back in where the black area is in the top of the picture.  Very cool spot.

tricklefromrocks2.22.14webThe rocks are leaking....look closely... maybe you can see.

moss2.22.14webBeautiful moss garden--it loves this weather!

columbine2.22.14webColumbine starting to show some life...

heuchera2.22.14webHeuchera showing its winter colors...

pachysandra2.22.14webNative pachysandra should be sending up white flowers before long.

sedum2.22.14web

Sedum

walkingfern2.21.14web

and Walking Fern are still attractive through the winter.

fullpond2.22.14web

The pond is full to overflowing with the recent rains.

Days like today give one that boost of sunshine desperately needed this time of year!

 

 
 

Permaculture

I'm sure that some of you have heard this term by now.  In a nutshell, it's recycling, reducing waste, organic gardening, and being frugal.  Pretty much the way our grandparents lived and the way we should be living.  That's the concept I've been living by here on the farm, and I've been encouraging others to live this way as well.

We all need to know more about life and how everything is intertwined.  The more we know, the better off we'll be, because the more we know, the more we will want to be in tune with nature.  The more in tune with nature that we are, the better off everyone will be.

The other day I received an e-mail from a permaculture site that I subscribe to and I've listened to this song--oh maybe 75 times in the last two weeks!  It's my new favorite song.  It's really good....listen...and the video that goes with it is pretty good too, but I REALLY love the song.  Hope you enjoy it too!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=EU8sxOmRQbY

Peace.

 

Permaculture

I'm sure that some of you have heard this term by now.  In a nutshell, it's recycling, reducing waste, organic gardening, and being frugal.  Pretty much the way our grandparents lived and the way we should be living.  That's the concept I've been living by here on the farm, and I've been encouraging others to live this way as well.

We all need to know more about life and how everything is intertwined.  The more we know, the better off we'll be, because the more we know, the more we will want to be in tune with nature.  The more in tune with nature that we are, the better off everyone will be.

The other day I received an e-mail from a permaculture site that I subscribe to and I've listened to this song--oh maybe 75 times in the last two weeks!  It's my new favorite song.  It's really good....listen...and the video that goes with it is pretty good too, but I REALLY love the song.  Hope you enjoy it too!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=EU8sxOmRQbY

Peace.

 

 
 

Keeping busy on a cold wintry day

Cabin fever?  Not me!  I am ready for spring, but there's lots to do indoors.  I had taken a bunch of neat pics of the snow all around the farm, but somehow they got lost in between the camera and the computer--I'm sure you know the feeling :-(  Just imagine everything around covered with about 5 inches of snow.

After tending to "the girls" this morning, I collected almost 2 dozen eggs.  They've begun laying more and more each day.   During December and January I was only getting a half dozen or less.

eggs2.13.14web

And there were no green eggs during the winter.  I mumbled something about "soup pot" with an Amerecauna in my arms last week and suddenly they started laying!  (haha)

With the back porch stocked with firewood, (thanks to my boyfriend) I'm all warm and toasty for a day's worth of piddling.  A couple of weeks ago my sister gave me her stash of jewelry-making supplies......oh my....she created a monster!

jewelrymakingweb

 

I did have a few things of my own, and of course I had to go purchase things I didn't have, but it's SO MUCH FUN!  Here are a few things I've put together so far.....

braceletandearringsweb

 

A bracelet made with memory wire and a pair of earrings to match.  I gave these to my sister for sharing all her goodies with me.

jewelryinprogresswebHere are a couple of wire bracelets I'm working on, and of course I need another size wire to complete the design in my head.  Another pair of earrings is in the top of the photo and a necklace pendant (just above the beaded bracelet) is in progress.

It's amazing how time flies when I'm fooling with beads and wire.  Another batch of blackberry wine was started this morning and of course Pinterest grabbed an hour or so of my time :-)  What's the old saying "Make hay while the sun shines".....I say "make jewelry when it's nasty outside"!

One thing on my "winter list of things to do" was to tie dye a Wild Things Farm sign for the farmer's market.  I came across a nice piece of heavy fabric last summer that I've been saving for such a use.  This afternoon I tied up and dyed the background for the sign.

tiedyesignweb

 

It's a rainbow, grass, and a big sunshine....can't you see it?  Well, it has to sit in plastic for a day or three then rinsed out and washed and THEN we'll see if it worked.

The snow is melting quickly and tomorrow's weather forecast is for rain.  I'll be in the high tunnel harvesting greens for a Saturday "crop drop" as my youngest son has affectionately named my veggie deliveries.

Stay warm and keep busy.

 

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Life in the Country

Life in the country is somewhat different than life in the city, or even in the suburbs.  If you live in the country you have to get used to seeing, uh, well, dead things.

Theres'a perpetual spring really near the farm, called "Baker's Spout" .  It's a spring that runs under the county road that my farm is on, and someone has plumbed a pvc pipe into the spring so it is running out of a "pipe" and it runs all the time....24/7.  It's been a local "hot spot" for many, many years, and folks still gather water there for drinking.  I drank it once when I first moved out here and, um, I'm won't drink it again :-)

That makes it a favorite for local hunters to bring their fresh kill to clean under fresh running water.  Do they take the carcass, guts, and bones with them when they are through?   Nooooooo they don't.  The local dogs go shopping there quite often.  Every dog I've had since I've lived here has frequented "The Spout" for supplement to what they are fed here at the house.

Hattie is no exception.  Just a few days ago I was working over at the new high tunnel at I noticed her prancing about and was able to get a shot.......

hattiewithribcagewebShe had confiscated an entire rib cage and was carrying it about looking for a place to bury it.  Some people say "ooooh, gross"!  I say....It's life in the country  and someday she may stumble upon it and have a tasty snack to munch on :-)

 

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Groundhog Day

Sunday mornings are usually spent in the depths of Pinterest but this morning, after I got through with my chores at the chicken coop, I was wondering if the groundhog saw his shadow--I'm not superstitious, just curious :-)

Well, he did see his shadow, and I saw something on the website that mentioned Candlemas.  Okay, "google, what is candlemas"--it was a Christian tradition to bring all the candles that were to be used in the church during the year into the building and bless them.

ALSO, February 2 marks the midway point between Winter Solstice and Spring Solstice.  Farmers are supposed to have half their corn and half their hay left at this point in the season.  

ALSO, February 2 is celebrated as the day that Jesus was taken to the temple and offered to God (abbreviated version).

An excellent explanation of all these different celebrations of such a strangely named holiday are on the website:

projectbritain.com/year/candlemas.html?

Who would have thought?  By the way, the resident groundhog at Wild Things Farm DID NOT see his shadow today :-)

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