Saturday, March 12, 2016


it has been a crazy week..   its lambing time.  the babies came fast and furious all week.  six in total, however one pair of very teeny tiny twins didn't survive.  the four remaining are large and beautiful and healthy,  and busy.  they jump and play together.  they even gum at the hay just like mom,  even though their nourishment really comes from their moms.  they are too cute, and its my favorite time of season..   the baby bunnies all arrived week before last.  ten new meat rabbits and six mini Rex.  the Rex were bred for 4-h bunnies.  it seems its hard to find small rabbits out here so we bred some. we rehomed a couple of them to a couple from Tucson for house pets..  imagine my shock when i found out you can litter train them.

the porch has exploded with start plants.  the aquaponics is out of room already, and has to be expanded.  the  greenhouse has to be relined thanks to the crazy spring winds.  the hoop house is like a sauna from the sun.  the figs are in love with the hoop house.  so the check list for jobs to do is out of control.  the expansion on the  garden is progressing.  it needs some leveling and it will be ready for lots of strawberries.  we have two fields ready for grain crops for the sheep, alfalfa in one but they really like that oat hay.

getting materials and fish ready for the small catfish pond.  and a new workawayer coming in this weekend. yeah,  we need the help.

things will ramp up even more after frost threat and the vegetable  plants start going in.  this place is turning into my new name for it "CRAZY TOWN"  hope your week is great, deb

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

late february in arizona

busy busy busy.  working on spring starts for the garden and aquaponics and this year expanded to a small hoop house for extra seed room.  most of the seeds are heirlooms that we generated last fall and so far so good.  with the tractor acquired we have spend a lot of time prepping ground this fall and winter.  many of the tree starts we have been growing from infancy are now able to be planted, this is next weeks project.  the fertilizers are on the gardens prepping the soils,  nature handled this one in the form of horse manure. some leveling needs done in the fields then we wait for mother nature to plant.  by giving the plants some early grow time we will advance the grow season.  this works very well for this area.  the massive temperature changes that can jump into the 100 degree mark will begin thru June,  most of the plants cant take this heat so the reasoning is early in and early out helps erases that problem for us.  summer garden will be prepping in the greenhouses during this time waiting for the heat to build for monsoon, then the summer long term crops will be planted with the help of the rain to keep them cooled and watered to maturity.

walked the orchard we planted last year and the fruit trees are showing buds and some leafing.  we water all the plants thru the winter months as well.  this helps grow the roots.  makes a healthier tree and more productive.  barring disasters we should see some fruits this year.  the peach trees are a year or two older and they  produced some fruit last year, hoping for bigger yield this year.

the pasture next to the sheep pen has been prepped for alfalfa.  we will have to wait to plant until last chance of frost is over.  but the sheep have plenty of grasses to eat till then.  hoping for babies from them soon.

it is spring time at the farm.  two sets of baby bunnies are growing fast and rowdy.  one breed  is a mini rabbit.  these are so cute and round and fuzzy.  they will be great bunnies for local kids 4-h projects or just for fun.  we have five of these.  most are a black and white mix or brown and white,  but one is solid brown just like mama.  the new bunnies just arrived two days ago.  they are well covered in wood chips and lots of hair mama pulled from her fur.  the wiggles looked to be a count of seven or eight.  these are meat rabbits.  they will stay with mama till they finish nursing.  having never been around rabbits i will say they grow so very fast.

we are in spring wind season right now and it has been fast and furious this week  if its not anchored its in the fence row.  guess that will be next weeks project.  we have started seeing some temperatures in the eighties so i don't expect  a long wait for spring.  

the new chickens are advancing their production again.  and several pullets are laying tiny little round eggs.  practicing for their summer job.  now if i could just keep the crazy Guinea out of the pen the roosters would settle and stop spending their day chasing that crazy bird.

hope everyone has a great week.  talk soon, deb

Sunday, January 24, 2016

very early spring training

very busy with seed planting right now.  green house is loaded.  new greenhouse hoop set up for install next week.  that should allow us an extra few months for spring and fall plants.  the residents of the wintering green house have done very well.  we have had some chills out here this winter but all still look healthy.  doing triple gardens this year and sowing some alfalfa for the sheep.  we hope to add some new livestock this spring as well.  maybe a couple goats again, and turkeys.  we are even looking at maybe a calf.  should be a great learning year for all of us.

the aquaponics are rebuilt and planted.  spring greens doing well.  we have decided to do a massive upgrade to the aquaponics.  the additional system will use a great deal of the remaining room in the building.  we will run companion planting in that set of beds to coordinate with the plants in outside gardens.  we had a large vegetable loss last year do to freaky Arizona summer weather, this year we hope to head that off, in spite of El Nino.

this week was manure week.  some disking to do and then just waiting on spring.  several of the trees that have been growing in the greenhouses and nurseries are transplanting to the great outdoors this week.  with any luck we might make shade yet.

spring isn't here yet, but it takes a lot of work to get ready for it.   we have had some temperature spikes in the 50 and 60's the last couple weeks.  made it great to be outside.  still cold at night but nothing the wood stove can't handle.

the catfish pond is looking good,  we will stock later in the spring.  a couple that came out and stayed for the winter added another dog to the mix.  he is a young German Shepard and a sweet puppy,  he was afraid of everything when he got here.  now he has made friends and they all love to play.  i believe that brings the total to seven.  oh my.  i wouldn't want to be a burglar.

drop a line and let me know how your winter is going.  doesn't sound very nice in parts of the country right now.  try not to wear out those snow shovels.