Posts Tagged by Peas
|April 15, 2010||Posted by Issa under Homesteading|
It’s Spring here in Tennessee, which means things have been busy here at The Wallow. Joshua bought me an awesome hammock, which I love to nap away the afternoon in. I haven’t felt much like posting, but that doesn’t mean stuff isn’t happening. I’m just less likely to want to sit down and get something down on the computer. The last few days I’ve been itching to post and trying to think of what I want to communicate with the world. All I’ve come up with is, “I love Spring!” Not very deep or original, I know, but that’s all that’s really on my mind. Here are the things I’m looking at these days:
This stick with some green on top is the tree I think is a black walnut tree. Last fall, all the leaves and stems fell off, leaving it just a stick coming out of the ground. I assumed this was supposed to happen, since another walnut at The Wallow did the same thing. Still, I’m glad to see it showing some green this spring. Now we just have to wait 15 more years for walnuts!
When we first moved in here, I immediately fell in love with this tree that sits in the front yard of the house. I’m even more overjoyed to discover that it blooms in the spring!
Joshua has tilled, composted, and mulched about 1000 square feet in our front yard, and now all kinds of things are growing there: romaine, spinach, tomatoes, corn, kohlrabi, radishes, carrots, and more. While I can’t wait to harvest (and eat!) them, I’m less involved in the growing. However, the peas are my favorite plant in the garden. They reach out little tendrils to hold onto their poles and each other, which I think is just adorable!
The pigs are happy! I recently expanded their fenced area so that they have maybe a 1/4 acre to themselves now. Back when the field was raked and planted into a pasture for them, the guy who did the bush-hogging swept a lot of the debris into a big pile. The pigs love rooting through this pile:
The little yard closest to the house is mostly crappy grass that someone planted in an effort to make a “real yard”. Slowly but surely, it’s being overtaken by clover and these awesome little purple flowers:
And, hippie that I am, I’m in love with dandelions, too. I loved it when their bright yellow was mixed in with the purple, and I love their poof tops now:
|November 11, 2009||Posted by Issa under Homesteading|
The Wallow has lots of distinct parts to it. There’s the house, of course. There’s the two-story barn, which now contains Joshua’s workshop. There’s the hill, which is behind the house. There’s the forest-ish area on the way to the creek, where the bee hives are. There’s the front yard, which will be the garden area come spring. There’s The Bowl, an area made up of driveway and concrete walls at basement level, making it seem like you’re in a bowl of concrete. There’s The Island, a grass and tree space between the two main driveways where Joshua chops wood and wood that has been delivered is stored. And finally, there’s the area we’ve been calling the field or the pasture.
The field is about a 1/2 acre of space, enclosed in a high-quality wooden fence. This is the area that we plan to use for keeping animals. However, like the rest of the property, it had been completely taken over by brushy weeds.
Here’s a picture from the far side of the field. The brush and grasses in the foreground are the field. The trees you can see beyond that are on The Island. You can see a bit of the fence in the front yard and a bit of the house beyond that. Joshua and I hadn’t even walked around in the field much, because it was so overgrown. We’d walked the outside of the fence row, but inside was a wild mess of bushes. While Joshua was able to mow most of the property, we thought the field was going to need the attention of a bush hog.
Moving from Atlanta to Knoxville, which is a much smaller town, I thought the CraigsList was going to be disappointing. However, I’ve found that while most sections are sparse, Knoxville CL’s Farm and Garden section is alive and kicking! And that’s the section that we really need! Anything we’ve looked for, we’ve found right away. It was no trouble to find someone with a bush hog who’d come out and turn the field back into pasture.
Here’s a picture of the field. Off in the upper right you can see the bush hog at work. Right in the middle, do you see the tree with the bright red leaves? It’s actually a tree growing, not just a bush or weed, so I decided I’d like to save it. At first I thought it might be a black walnut tree, but I’m leaning towards Ash now, and I might not know for sure for a few more years.
Just a few minutes later (that bush hog works FAST!) here’s me leaning on the fence with that same red tree in the background on a very different landscape!
And here’s a shot down to the other end of the field. Turns out there was a lot of good grass underneath all those weeds. As long as we keep up the mowing, this part of the field will be easily reclaimed from the weeds.
The barn has a single horse stall on the side nearest the field. That space is going to become shelter for my pigs in the spring. That means that field space closest to the barn will become the pasture for the pigs. While the bush hog guy was here, we had him run another attachment over the field. It was a rake of some sort that dug up a bit of the top of the ground, so that I could toss out seeds and give them a better chance.
From Albert Lea Seed in Minnesota, I ordered a pig pasture seed mix. It contains sudan grass, field peas, rapeseed, and annual rye grass, all plants meant to be planted in the fall and all things that the pigs will enjoy and benefit from eating come spring. The mixture is called “Laugh and Grow Fat”, which is indeed a perfect name for pig food.
Here’s me out in the field throwing out seed. It rained a couple of days later after I tossed the seeds out. I hope that some of them will settle in and there will be yummy stuff in this pasture for the pigs in the spring.