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Walden Effect Facebook page
Bug zapper 2.0 has launched.
Five baby phoebes are almost too many for the nest to hold.
The goats like to wait for me at the gate.
Okay, I never said they were all on the same side of the gate.
More seriously, there's
been some trouble in paradise over the last few weeks --- hoof rot. As
these things go, I suspect it's a very light case, but the recessed hoof
area freaked me out enough to order some zinc sulfate
to stop the bad bugs in their tracks. While I was waiting for the drug
to arrive, I also instituted once-a-week hoof trimming, which Artemesia
submitted to with her usual "please don't...but okay if you must" grace.
Interestingly, by the time the Hoof-n-Heel came in the mail, her
problematic hoof area was already starting to regrow.
I suspect the root of the
problem was threefold. First, Abigail was a bully and often didn't
allow Artemesia to stand up out of the mud on the loafing stations...even though we put two porches in the pasture to ensure there was enough space. Yes, our ex-herd queen would run back and forth chasing Artemesia away from anything tantalizing just for the fun of it.
All of that said, it's
not the end of the world. I'll keep treating the problematic front
hooves daily with the zinc sulfate and trimming weekly until all signs
are gone, and I've also rotated to a new pasture in hopes of keeping our
doe off wormy ground.
Oh and here's one last
cute-goat photo to make up for regaling you with such a difficult topic
today. Our goat kids really might be growing faster than the weeds!
We had to plug our big freezer back in today.
Fourteen pints of broccoli is twice as much as we froze in all of 2015.
Even better, two-thirds of the crop is still in the garden.
What's the first thing
you look at when you pick a head of broccoli out of your garden?
Personally, I flip the whole thing over and search for signs of cabbage worms. This year, each head I've harvested has been pristine.
Aurora seems to have more agility than her twin brother.
My little herb bed on the
south-facing side of the trailer is doing beautifully this year. On the
recommendation of one of our readers, I started some Greek oregano from seed
last year and found to my delight that it did indeed have much more of
the flavor I was looking for than the plain old oregano I'd grown
before. Throw in some sage, lavender, thyme, chamomile, fennel, chives,
and a few flowers and I have a pretty and delicious space right outside
the back door.
Being so close to the
kitchen, the herb garden reminds me to pick a little flavor for meals
that I might otherwise skip. I'm also air-drying a few of the more
aromatic leaves while they're at their peak since last year's dried basil really hit the spot over the winter.
It was a risk planting this sweet corn on April 20th but I think we're in the clear.
I hate to admit it, but I
got a bit disheartened by our bees and ignored them for a solid month.
The thing is, I actually lost track of how many swarms materialized and then flew away, never to be seen again. (Four, I think?) It was
pretty amazing when I was watching Artemesia and family graze in the
oats and a mass of bees came flying just over our heads, a few landing
on the trailer roof before leaping back into the air. But my rational
side knows that each absent swarm is that much less chance of homegrown
honey this year.
Strawberries are my
favorite fruit and fruit is my favorite food group. So you'd think I'd
be tempted by out-of-season berries at the grocery store.
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