Well it's been a while. Since the last post we have made hay, started irrigating, had the Grand children for a visit and presently have my wife's parents with us.
The hay was a poor crop and typical of many of the older stands around, due to a cold dry spring and then a quick jump in temperatures the crop was light with only half the normal bales. This means we are watering and hoping for a good 2nd and 3rd cut or we will be short of winter feed. The pasture is doing well though and the lambs are starting to fill out. Rosa our Guardian dog is now very well adjusted, and is a great dog, doing all the right things for a change!
The garden is coming along but with the strange spring weather not all plants grew as they should. There will be few carrots and parsnips this year and very few cauliflowers and broccoli. Needless to say we shall still be up to our armpits in zucchini and beans!
I have always been a keen veg grower, but just for the house. With all this hundred mile diet and so many people in our area looking for local produce I have had to do some soul searching. So I hitched up the discs and chisel plow and ripped up half acre of pasture on the south side of the barns to prepare a market garden for next season. I know this is too small for a serious venture but I would like to start small, if it works I have 4 acres next to it to get serious with.
I plan to keep cultivating it and irrigating it till mid August, that should keep the weeds at bay and deplete some of the weed seed bank. Then sow fall rye as a cover crop and in mid October cover it all with sheep manure compost and work it all in ready for next springs planting.
We are presently checking out the area Farmers Markets to see what sells and if there are any niches open to us. The farmer that I am means that I like to plant big seeds into the dirt and stand back. Though I think I will have to get more technical and do the whole transplanting thing and may be at a later date a greenhouse. For now I will need a nice hoe to lean on instead of my shepherds crook, though the wife says I have to weed with it , whats with that?