Thursday, July 23, 2015

a new growing season

the little aquaponic system is scheduled to go big..  we are drawing up plans and supplies to have the system up and planted by fall.  the big pond is full of babies to help that happen and they need a place to grow.  and if they need to grow they may as well grow my green house too.  some of the winter plants will still grow in the garden but i will be able to grow greens and tomatoes and numerous other plants in the green house at the same time.  a solar water heater will help with the temperature problems and the sun will help do its job as well.  many of the longer term plants can be grown in tubs that i will water from the fish tanks.  this will lower the water level and make room for fresh water when it needs replenished.  its a great system and where else can you grow vegetables and fish and root plants all at the same time.  we have many visitors coming over the next few months to help with the installation of all the plumbing and tanks,  it will be a great learning experience for all of us.  and these are skills they will take back with them when they return to their own countries or states.  the tilopia have exceeded our estimations and we are still looking at catfish too.  fresh fish is unheard of in southern Arizona and the market seems to be there.  our Switzerland visitor has gone home and she got to see everything in the southern part of the state she wanted to see.  she came to us from the Navajo reservation and she learned  many things in both places.  she also spent some time in SoCal too on a horse ranch.  she has horses at home and i think she enjoyed her time in the states.

as for me I'm laid up until the nail puncture in my foot heals up.  hopefully it wont be long.  the antibiotics are kicking in and the big bad shot helped too.

i promise we are trying to fix the comment link.  in the mean time send email to  if you have questions or  you all have a happy happy day.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015


i leaned over the pond today to clean out some of the debris from the rain storm last night and found about two hundred baby tilopia.  wow breeding must have worked.  we pulled some to put in an aquarium in the green house in case the other adults eat the babies.  they have a good mama, she was hovering under them as they swam along.  if they get frightened they go to her mouth and she holds them there until they swim back out.  we have a couple bluegill in the pond too and not real sure what they would do. we have some round tubes in the bottom of the water for them to hide in when not in mama's care anymore.  its been fun watching the babies swim around their new tank.  they are little piggies and will need fed six or seven times a day, at least until fingerling's or able to feed themselves.

the sheep are loose in the pen again.  mohawk took one look at me and it was game on.  now i carry a big stick.  it looks like several are pregnant again.  should be twins this time. they are little piggies too.  they completely ate all of the grass down in their new pen so now they are back in ours.  the rain has been slow to reach us out here so the new grasses haven't had time to come up.  i hope the rain we got last night kicks that off.  the garden is exploding with plants,  some i don't even remember what i planted.  i prepped plums for jelly this week and zucchini for the freezer for breads.  some of the summer squash came in for eating and green beans are about to bloom.  the tomato are suffering from the hungry quail and the pack rats keep running away with the corn seeds.  its a zoo.  the green house is fantastic.  the aquaponics was a winning success, the items planted were lettuces, tomato, shallots, and Swiss chard, all doing great.  we are going to expand the system. and the new baby tilopia will help with that system.

we had company last weekend.  some people came out to visit and camp over night.  it was great fun.  the heavens provided a lightning show for all of us to enjoy.  there was no rain so they camped under the stars.  you know how sometimes someone looks familiar but you cant place them.  turns out one of our guests was on a television series. i guess that explains it.  they are coming back to visit in September.

have a new friend that lives down the road and we are going to see the new home they are building tomorrow.  that will be fun.

and last night we found out a guest is coming on Friday to spend some time with us.  she is from Switzerland and will be flying out later next week and will stay with us till then.  its been very busy on the homestead this month and enjoyable.

i will continue to post on the blog because i missed doing it.  if you want to follow along that is fine as well.  stop by and visit.