Monday, May 23, 2011
Getting the garden in
It was a three day rescue course, but it's been raining for two weeks and my field research season starts today. We needed a dry day for tillage, to get the remainder of the cool weather garden crops in, so I played hookey.
The ancient Troy-Bilt rotor-tiller gave the normal amount of trouble starting, but after some coaxing roared into throbbing and very noisy life, and made short work of the thousands of tiny weed seeds that had sprouted.
It's gratifying that these are just the mild airborne weeds you'll always get, these days. The rank quack grass ("couch" grass in the UK) is more or less gone.
By weeding the soil, not the weeds, we managed to clear almost all the quack.
The onions and greens were already in and sprouting up. I put in cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, five varieties of potatoes, including some Blue Adirondack, a new variety (for us), leeks, and last but by no means least, carrots.
A big phew. That rain seemed incessant. But then it often does in Maine. Having the big Kubota and smaller Troy-Bilt tillers helps a good deal. This garden wouldn't be in at all if it had needed to be double-dug.
The chicks are getting big and Aimee has let them out on the lawn once already. Properly restrained, of course, not wandering free.
I didn't see this, but apparently they enjoyed themselves thoroughly.
The sheep are very loud these days. The lambs are big and still nursing, so the mothers are very hungry. They don 't have very good grass in their home paddock, the Back Forty, so they're always wanting to be moved around to the lusher pastures.
They get still grained twice a day and there remains untouched six-inch high grass in quite a few places in the home paddock, so this is just a preference they're expressing, not a necessity.
But the grass is always greener....
Please, please let us out! We're starving, honest we are.
But they've just scoffed down a big feed of sixteen-weight and oats, the bummers.