Saturday, March 22, 2008

Donkeys and manure

Donkeys are awesome. Besides being a very noble creature. They are fun to have around. You can do all kinds of things with them. With donkeys you have jennies(female) and jacks(male). With the jennies you can train them to be ridden or carry items. They are also very good guard animals. Donkeys hate dogs and coyotes and will stomp one in a heartbeat. Loads of people have them for their sheep, goats, and cows. Jacks on the other hand are alot different. They still hate dogs and coyotes, but you can't have them around other animals except for donkeys or horses. Jacks will chase and kill goats. They can be sweet and gentle one moment and the next turn aggressive. We have a jack named Buford. We originally got him to guard the goats. But then we figured out that you can't have him and the goats together because he will chase them. The reason why he does this is because he's a stallion and the pasture and woods is his domain. You know he's the man. He pities any other fools. So we have them separate. He's very social though. He likes to hangout next to the girls on his side of the electric netting. Even though Buford can be aggressive he's ajoy to have around. On of my favorite things about him is his manure output. He makes lots of good manure for compost. One cool thing about donkeys is that they poo in big piles. They just don't go anywhere and everywhere. They have piles. It makes it so easy for hauling manure. That leads me to my next post. Manure and soil.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Tippy Toes

Lots of planting going on. Wednesday afternoon and Thursday morning was busy with planting. Green Arrow and Sugarsnap peas, Cylindra beets, Icicle and French Breakfast radishes, Monte Bianco Fennel, Red Russian Kale, Agretti(also known as's an Italian vegetable that looks like a huge chive...flavor is a bit bitter and sour...good braised in olive oil with garlic), Merlo Nero Spinach, Wild Argula, and Bianca Di Miaggio and Red from Florence Onions. The Oasis Turnips are coming up really well. They are a salad turnip that you can eat raw. Flavor is a sweet. Perfect in salads.
The preparation for planting something goes like this. Since some of the area we're planting in as been a garden in quite a long time there's alot more work involved. The ground was plowed with a chisel plow. Then tilled in. Alot of farmers will then take a drag harrow and pull it over the newly plowed and tilled area. The harrow pulls out of the ground clods of grass and debris. Since we don't have one I used a regular rake. It doesn't get everything out, but it definately helps. Then I spread composted horse and donkey manure. I till it in one more time. Now I've got a nice bed. I stretch out a string as a guide. Then if I'm direct seeding I make a furrow with a hoe right next to the string. I go along tapping the seeds out of the pack. I cover the seeds up with dirt. I tell the seeds I'm tucking them in. Then I lightly tamp the soil down and water them in.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Planting and Rednecks

Planting is in full swing here. Mammoth Melting Snowpeas and Oasis turnips have been directly seeded into the soil. Des Vertus Savoy and Mammoth Red Rock cabbage, Gobbo Di Nizzio Cardoons, Calabrese broccoli, and Bianca Di Miaggio onions have been seeded into trays. Rouge Sang carrots, Blue Solaize Leeks, and Music Garlic are going strong. Today Sugarsnap peas were planted. Tomorrow Green Arrow peas, French Breakfast and Icicle radishes, Cylindra beets, and shit I can't remember the variety of fennel that will be planted. Oh well. Merlo Nero spinach, wild argula, Lacinto and Red Russian kale, and Agretti need to be planted.
I hate four wheelers and the rednecks who drive them! They have no respect for anything and everything. We've always had problems with four wheelers. They have shit for brains and think oh there's some wide open land let's go ride alllllll over it. They don't think this could be someones property.