Saturday, May 17, 2008

other goings 'round the hippychick universe

we're having a good week on the hippychick homestead. mr. t supercat and i happily welcomed three new chicken ladies into the family, a superbig pile of compost was delivered this week and it looks like today may be the first day to harvest some of our homegrown heirloom tomatoes. life is good.

i've said it before but i love my little small town. i like the quiet. i like the dogs barking. i like watching the kiddos walk to school. i like saying hello to the folks walking their dogs. i like waving to folks on my morning run. i like looking to see how well the gardens are growing around town. and i like not being able to shop everything you could ever want just down the street. that one element keeps real life in check and brings me, at least, closer to understanding the day, each day, for what it is. i may be a slow learner on that mark but there was something in me that picked this place and i'm happy for it.

lot's and lots of tasks have patiently waited for me, the hippychick, to finish the darn lady-chicken coop. and even with little bits of improvements and additional safety features i'd still like to add, they are simple enough for me to continue on down the list.

there's also small bits of life popping up and showing signs of fruiting. corns and okras, a second round of sorrel, beans and newly rooted rosemary's from my wonder if this will work root the rosemary test. the flowers keep blooming and many of the beneficials are sticking about. truth be told though, i've begun to spot some of the pesky suckers i'd rather not have roaming the place.

squash bugs - though this first round got squashed. i noticed the mama and the daddy several weeks back underneath the artichoke heads. thought it interesting as i had no idea that they were partial to artichokes and i let them be for a while to see if any of the many many mocking bird families i'm currently hosting in the yard might do me the favor of removing them. upon checking in once again, i noticed not just the mama and the daddy but a whole flock of baby squash bugs. oh no, not this year. sorry folks but you are not welcome. well i did the deed and squashed them. signs are up, look for the squash bugs, they are now in the proliferation stage. no chemicals, no poisons, just a keen eye and a mushing hand with soapy water at my side.

pretty soon it might be beans, beans and beans for dinner. i've planting quite a number of bean patches this year. not just for the beans but to give the beds a little time to recoup and to use the nitrogen fixing abilities of the beans for future crops. sure the big pile of compost is going to help out but i want to make sure that my rotations, which up until now, are well thought out and intelligently employed. i'm watching to see how this effects buggy bugs as well as the soil tilth. this is part of the reason the tomatoes are out back this year, way far away from the east side garden. they don't seem to be bothered with anything right now which is not truly unusual, it's when it gets steaming hot that the spider mites attack. (of which i do my best to combat with seaweed solution sprayed on the underside of the leaves)

but i'm beginning to wonder when i'll get to change over the garden beds to the new layout. maybe before this winter. don't know. time time time time time and the fact that i'd actually have to stop growing to do so. maybe i simply commit to what i've got now and spiff that up some. it's working, i can get the garden cart and the hose through without too much fuss and the plants seem happy with the way it is. i'll have to ponder this further, take some measurements and see if i could plan a planting that would allow for the rotation of the beds at 9o˚.

anyway, it's time to get the day going. the chickens are already out and about in the outside run, mr. t enjoyed a super duper kitty rub down this morning, i've enjoyed my first iced coffee and the sun is shining. i've still got this darned cough. the cold seems to really be sticking with me but it's a manageable thing, no headaches attached. i'll beat it. it's just a matter of time and a cry to eat more garlic!

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