The center of our country is still stuck in this awful heat and humidity trend. Yep, it's still nasty here. Kind of makes me wish I had the 7" of rain my family up in Chicago got just the other day. Today the weatherman is calling for a 40% chance of rain but with a light breeze and the sun blazing, I seriously doubt we will see one single drop of rain here. I did see some lightning way up north of us last night, the reflection of it lit the horizon up for more than an hour. Wish it would have dumped a little rain down here.
The truck bed is full of green bean plants from a neighbors garden. They picked 20 gallons of beans and gave up. I stopped in for a visit and ended up with a truck bed full plus some hybrid tomatoes and some end of the season sweet corn. It's a bi-color hybrid they planted, didn't do anywhere as good as my golden Bantam did. The bean plants netted my 9 gallons of good green beans for canning. The 2 buckets of corn is the last of what was good out of my own corn patch. The heat has ruined the second planting with the stalks only getting half size and the ears are pitifully small. The corn worms and weevils are hard into what's left since I don't use commercial pesticides. My own mix only works if you catch the bugs right away and I didn't check the patch as often as I should have this year due to the extreme heat we've been suffering thru. Yes, I know, shame on me but a person can only sweat so much in a single day before enough is enough.
Nope, I still haven't butchered any bunnies. they are still hopping around, trying to stay cool just like the rest of us. Stephanie asked what I do with the rabbit hides. Nothing Stephanie, I throw them away. It takes way too much time and effort to cure the hides the old fashioned way and commercially purchased chemicals are too expensive for my budget. If you want them, just say so and I'll save them for you.
Not much else going on around the farm this past week, just the trying to stay half way cooled down. I hope this awful heat wave breaks soon, I'm about out of bread!
LOL, well, not really the cobs being bad, it's the weevils and the borer worms! I picked a whole wheelbarrow full today and got them processed for canning, 7 gallons of whole kernel corn waiting to be canned. More to be picked tomorrow. I got run out of the corn patch by a pop up thunderstorm. It sure did cool it off nicely but the humidity is awful! Air you wear, yay rah! LOL
Hey all! It's still awful humid here, the kind of air that clings to you and sucks the energy right out of you. So, serious outside activity has been at a minimum here but I did manage to get some produce picked right before dark. The sweet corn is looking great and the 2 buckets were just a half row of corn. I need to get the rest of that row picked today, at least, before the coons start munching on it. I'm pretty happy with the crop, just one corn worm in all those ears. Not bad at all.
The Romas are in full swing now, wish I would have planted another dozen or so, LOL. I got 2 gallons of pulp from that bowl of Romas, it's simmering the excess water off it on the stove right now. I'm ready to be creating quarts of sauce.
I didn't butcher any rabbits like I said I was going to. It was just too hot. There's nothing worse than dripping sweat just standing there and the thought of rabbit fur stuck to my sweaty arms etc was just too much of a downer and I passed on the butchering. No worries tho, they aren't going anywhere and sooner or later, it will cool down. Until then, I'm keeping the activities that will be miserable in the heat and humidity to a minimum where I can.
UGH, it's been awful here all week. To top it off, the vegan shop with the free wi-fi decided to only keep the wi-fi running during business hours and has been shutting the box off so no internet connection for me when I have time to be on the internet. Guess the 3 Angels Broadcasting Group has attached strings to what they give away for free. If you don't come in to their shop and get preached on, you can't use the free wi-fi they've been advertising. Well, that's my biggest problem with organized religion and that's all I'm going to say about that.
Tonite I am sitting in the truck, 20 miles from home using McDonalds free wi-fi because we thought it was a 24 hour Mickey D's. Kind of hoping for a little air conditioning, LOL. The humidity is horrible tonite as it has been all week. 109 degree heat index yesterday, I dripped sweat all day. I so hate that. I have a burn on the top of my foot, about the size of a half dollar from where I slopped the bath water on the way to the tub Tuesday night. It's more painful that i thought it would be but it seems to be healing alright even with the constant moisture from sweating on it.
Okay, enough of that, what's been going on around the farm??? Well, the sweet corn is ready. The first round is anyway. I will be working on getting it ready to be canned up this weekend. The first planting of kidney beans, the ones I had to put the row covers on, are all done now. I've pulled all the plants and stripped the bean pods off. I ended up with 6lbs from 15 plants. Not a bad haul considering the beans seemed a little bit small in size. I think the soil will need some work come this fall. I have a good pile of compost out back ready and willing to be tilled in. The tomatoes are producing really well, I have 4 gallons of pulp in the freezer right now. I've been using the fresh frozen pulp on occasion tho, this year seems like I don't have enough food in the pantry. last years harvest wasn't spectacular so maybe I didn't get as much as I thought put up. I hope to make up a little from this year. We could use some rain tho, rain seems to be the best growth enhancer there is, much better than hand watering does.
The darn zucchini bugs killed my zucc plants! I thought I was doing so darn well this year with putting them in the tires. They looked so good and were producing so nice and then BAM! gone, one by one, just like always. Also, I've had a horn worm problem in my potatoes! That's right, those nasty, fat, green worms that eat the tomato plants have had a field day with the potatoes. I don't have any borage plants anywhere near the potatoes so the worms are having breakfast, lunch and dinner at the expense of my tater plants. Guess I'll be digging a few tire sets up earlier than I'd planned to.
The onion crop isn't doing worth a hoot this year at all. The tops have folded over signaling the end of the growing cycle and the onions are a pitiful size. Some are lucky to be as big as golf balls. A truly disappointing crop this time around. Is it from worn out soil, too much early rain, not enough mid season rain, who knows. I honestly did not pay much attention to them thru the season. Not as much as I should have apparently. Now I am paying for it with small onions.
Over all tho, it appears to be an average growing season with so far, an average yield. I was hoping for a bit of a bumper crop on a few items but it's just not going to happen. I do have some things I can use to trade with to make up where I may be lacking in some food staple areas.
Other than that it's been business as usual around the farm. As soon as the heat breaks, rabbit butchering is on the list. I've got 15 good sized young rabbits slurping up feed by the gallon and not growing because of the heat. Oh well, soon I will be back down to just the breeding does and start the whole cycle over again. At least the feed crop looks good this year. I have already put up a little more than half what I'll need for the livestock(rabbits included) and with a sprinkle or 2 of rain, the second cut will be very nice. Plus, the feed corn crop is looking decent. I should end up with a little i can trade with this year over what I'm going to need. that will be a nice change.......
Here I am, sitting on the bench in the middle of downtown Tville, population 531, using the free wi-fi at the Vegan cafe. There's a thunderstorm trying to come in, I can hear the thunder rumbling. We could use the rain, everything is a bit dry around here right now. I've been watering the tire garden every other evening and missed one watering and it about killed the pumpkins and the meal corn. I hope they come back from it, I hate to lose them both.
It's tomato squishing time here. I've been running them thru the "salsa" maker to squish the seeds and skins off them and sticking the pulp in the freezer. I haven't canned up any of it yet, way too hot in the kitchen and the horse flies are too bad outside still. It's the same with the blackberries, the patches of wild berries are just about done now but the tame berries are just now starting to come on. I only have 8 gallons in the freezer, I haven't squished any of them for jam yet. I did make a couple cobblers but they didn't last long enough to get pictures of them. The vultures here don't even wait for it to cool off before they're diving on them! I always make sure I get a piece because there is never any left over the next morning.
Ya'll remember my neighbor up the road with cancer? The one that I was helping with the cattle all winter and where the calf I butchered came from. He passed away last weekend. I spent 2 days this week cutting and raking a hay field his farm hands messed up. They also managed to tear up his round baler and one of his cutters. I will be repairing those pieces of equipment for his widow sometime this coming week. I also fixed a couple of gates they threw down and ran over in between his pastures. The man was my friend and his family still ranks high in my book so I'm doing what I can to help them in this time of sorrow and need. It's the right thing to do.
The sweet corn is looking very good, much better than I expected with the late planting. I will be picking the first round of it this weekend. It will all be canned, what we don't eat fresh anyway, LOL. Oh, I have my first pot of home grown chili on the stove. The beans, tomatoes, onions and chilis were all grown here and the meat is deer I hunted. I have been missing my chili!
Everything else around here is still the same. Just trying to stretch the pitiful paycheck from week to week to cover our mortgage, insurance and taxes. The boy and I both need shoes. Guess we need to go pick up some cans....
I just realized I haven't been to town for the free wi-fi in a while. I'm just feeling a little tired every night after I get everything done. I will post a couple pictures and do a full post in the next day or so....
Yes, all of 2013 and part of 2012 are missing from the blog. You can thank Mike H for that. Almost all of those posts were about our great friendship and our partnership in farming. You all know how that turned out!