Spring on the farm…

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So pretty!

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Hello Rhubarb. Umm this reminds me I still have a lot of rhubarb in the freezer. Thinking I should make up some Rhubarb Raspberry jam with some of the frozen fruit I still have, before this year’s is ready to pick! I am still poking and peeking for Asparagus but nothing yet. I did see that the garlic has shown up and is peeking out of the heavy Winter mulch.

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THE CATTLE ARE ON GRASS!!!!!!!

It is so nice to see Spring popping out everywhere we turn. This week has been absolutely gorgeous, but per usual, next week is predicted to be cold in the 50’s and rather damp all week, all typical for this time of year, even expecting 32 degrees next Tuesday night, meaning, I am glad I resisted the urge to plant in the last couple of warmer weeks.

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The mini high tunnel has radishes, lettuces, beans, spinach, peas, and chard. All are growing well. When it gets warm enough that the danger of frost is gone, we will pick up the greenhouse and take it off the bales, and the little early garden will provide us with great produce while the big garden is only getting going. The meat birds and new hens arrive on May 11 and so by mid to late June I can get them in the tunnel and move them around.

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We are still working down our freezer food. Although this corn looks picture perfect, I won’t freeze on the cob again. I did most of last year’s corn cut off in bags, and then some on the cob just because I thought it would be a treat mid winter, but the texture was softer than we like so I cut it off and cooked it in a pan with other veggies and let the corn caramelize a bit, it turned out ok, and i gave the cobs to the chickens, who were thrilled with them. I may share some of this corn on the cob with them for treats, we still have frozen bags of corn, so sharing seems only fair!

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This is last year’s cabbage, I have one left in storage. The outsides don’t look so good, but after peeling off a few layers they are perfectly good. I also used storage carrots and celeriac and lots of our garlic in this kimchi, which by the way turned out delicious AND colorful!

I’ve been trying my hand at foraging which turns out to be good exercise as well! My daughter and I are doing a Fitbit challenge and foraging is really helping. I am not the best forager and so I am armed with a hybrid foraging method, which means my smart phone with foraging aps, which are my friend on these jaunts. There are also some great FB pages where nice people who know a lot about foraging will help ID your photos, which really helps!

Today the bare root stock came, so those will go in this weekend, and the Shiitake mushroom plugs came as well, so that will be on the agenda too. I want to combine the two chest freezers into one freezer so that I can prepare for my licensing of the freezer for selling our upcoming beef! We are really looking forward to having beef. We are getting down to about our last third of the hog from last year, still have plenty of chickens, but they should be gone by August when we process our meat birds. I am hoping to  also do some setting up of the garden this weekend if the weather stays nice. Not planting, but cleaning things up and getting it ready. If it is a cold wet weekend, then what? I will cook:)

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A Spring Birthday and a Fall Gift

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This is an awesome gift from Hubby. It was my birthday in late March and a very large box was delivered that day. We have endless amounts of apple trees, almost all of them are neglected old trees from farms years ago, but they still have good apples and they all taste different, and have different textures. I’ve always thought they would make an excellent cider! We are both very excited to use this. I need to look at fruit grinders, but otherwise we are set to go! It was a perfect gift for me!

Since my birthday (the first day of Spring) we have been in the 70’s, gotten 15 inches of snow and…

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… then an ice storm. Today it is in the 40’s and all the snow now is gone.

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It’s been great weather for the chickens, they are so excited to come out in the morning, unlike before when one would poke it’s head out the door look around and cluck to the others to not bother, that it was still Tundra-land.

This weekend I am going to try and prune these sad, sad grapes. Seems there are always more important projects and since setting posts isn’t something I do well, getting the grapes set up properly just hasn’t happened yet. At least I can prune them a lot, and then hopefully hubby can get the posts in before too long.

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I’m hoping a couple reference books and a few you tube videos later I should know how to do this. This weekend will be a good time for a Spring coop cleaning as well. Also on the docket for the weekend is to regroup the two freezers outside and combine them into one freezer so we can turn one off. Soon it will get licensed for our early Summer beef, and Fall pork. As I look through the freezer I realize that at this point it is less organized after a Winter of grabbing this and that. I noticed a huge sack of bags of frozen broccoli I didn’t realize were there and that made me think it was time to review it all, tighten up the organization of it and figure out how to have it last till June when veggies come in, but not have lots of left in June. This is tightrope, I hope to get better at it. I believe there is Broccoli Cheddar Soup in our future:)

Spring planning has gone amazingly well seeing how I wasn’t even sure I would be able to get to it at all because of all the family things that had gone on in late Winter. In addition to family issues, my business, was and still is, going through changes. I have spent a considerable amount of time planning for and preparing to test out a co-packer to bake my product, which will allow my business to grow, and this would be super exciting! Somehow even with all this going on, I did get through Spring planning! I have my seeds, the bare root stock will arrive when ready, the mini high tunnel is planted, and  the chickens have been ordered, and our piglets we hear have been born. All went well and so far it seems we will get the four we requested. I even collected a pint of Black Walnut Syrup. All in all a very successful Spring plan was achieved even with some challenges.

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Nice to see the snow gone, (hopefully for good), the last few days have been beautiful.