We just finished the first (of several , we hope) batch of strawberry jam
from our garden , and it's so good it'll make you slap your Mama .
The stinkin' rain here has things so wet that any berry that touches the
ground gets waterlogged and ruined if I let it ripen completely . There's a
learning curve on when to pick , hopefully I have it down now . We probably
lost a quart or two of berries because I waited for them to be dead ripe .
We're getting a lot of rain too, forecast for next two weeks just says,
"Rain, more rain, lots of rain." Having to pick low hanging cukes to
keep them off the ground and away from slugs, etc. The garden is rapidly
becoming a jungle and the !@#$% zucchini weigh three lbs quickly.
Luckily they don't have many seeds because they grow so fast.
No strawberries here but the figs are getting bigger every day. The dill
weed has already gone to seed as has the cilantro. Lots of coriander to
it is wonderful stuff for sure, especially in the
late winter and early spring. :)
they are edible quite early, i've picked and eaten them
from early stage when they are just going from green to
white. obviously they are not as good as fully ripened,
but they're still edible.
we had a frost warning for last night, but i think it was
warm and windy enough. good thing as i wasn't able to get
out and cover the berries.
today is blue, sunny and perfect, i started the gardening
chores watering the sprouts, the garlic and the strawberries as
we've not had much rain at all (an inch in the past several
weeks). on the radar there's a big storm out there heading our
ways, but that doesn't mean we'll get a drop from it. i don't
believe it until i see it hit the ground...
been doing "projects" the past few days. while Ma is away.
one has been needing to be done for several years now, so i'm
glad that is done and the sink and faucet look much nicer and
don't leak. hope Ma likes it. white is not a common finish
these days at the hardware stores or big box places. when she
was leaving she was trying to get me to do some other projects
and i told her i'd put them on the list but that i had other
plans. she was kinda peeved, but now she'll get it. i hope.
the clothes rack i'll finish up in a few hours when i can
do the second coat of varnish. the handrail project will
have to wait until tomorrow or ...
right now is a good time for a short nap.
Here's a link to my current project . Gotta get it finished so I can mow
some areas to plant my bee-friendly seeds .
Dang! Did you salvage that or just wear it out? We could be good
friends, I repair, repaint, do what I can to keep equipment working
until it is absolutely no good for anything. I've got "stuff" around
here that's still working that I bought or scavenged fifty years ago.
Cleaned up an old fishing reel the other day and made it work again that
I bought in 1962, still flings a lure and rewinds nicely.
I pulled out my great grandfather's homemade galvanized steel tool box
the other day and sharpened bits, oiled or greased everything in there
and put them back in the box until I need them. He was a blacksmith so
much of the tools he made by hand. He was also a sawyer, ran his own
sawmill, logged the old growth trees on his homestead, homesteaded in
1866 in Central Louisiana, made cross ties by hand for the railroad.
Whatever it took to keep a very large family going.
I hit a few flea markets or farm sales when I can. Several years ago I
hit a church sale and bought over 200 fruit jars for a nickel a piece.
Still using some of them.
Waste not, want not was the family motto.
Good going Terry.
A few months ago I bought a JD 317 yard tractor for $25 ... I'm into it
around 600 bucks now . The original deck I got with the tractor is the Swiss
cheese one , I bought another just for the deck itself , and had to combine
the best parts of both into one usable deck . There are some pics of the
tractor in that keepin' busy album too . Right now I've just got new spindle
bearings for two spindles sitting on the bench - and I should be out in the
shop workinh on them instead of sitting here typing .
FWIW , I have a full machine shop here , the first permanent structure
built in our little clearing out in the woods .
Many years ago I was a gunsmith in addition to my regular job. When I
finally got a building, for free if moved, I heard my old high school
had a bunch of machine tools up for grabs. Turned out to be Navy surplus
from WWII, given to the school while I was going to it. Went over to see
how much they wanted for it and they gave it to me and used the Ag
students and their two-ton truck to haul it to my "new" building. Nearby
neighbor was a machinist with Dupont and offered to help me install
them. They worked fine and were finally sold off, with all the contents
of the shop, to a gunsmith in Louisiana for a reasonable price. Knowing
Cajuns he or his children are probably still using them. I needed a
barrel lathe and had to buy a new one, boo hoo, had to sell it too.
I was, by then working overseas for a lot more moola than I could make
gunsmithing and it was nearly more fun than being a gunschmidt. Nowadays
I just keep up my hunting and self defense weapons. I missed the gun
shop for awhile but finally grew up and did other things that were fun. <G>
it's nice to have the space to work in! here i have very
limited space. i don't do any refinishing work any more like
i used to (most the furniture i own is recycled stuff from the
dumpsters where i used to rent).
we've already mowed here a few times. i'm assuming this is
a brush mower and not just a grass/lawn mower?
which plants you putting in?
Actually it's supposed to be a pretty good mower deck , maybe not up to
putting green standards , but plenty good enough for a lawn - I'll be using
it for brush at first , but inevitably the wife is going to want a "lawn".
I've got yellow clover , lavender , bee balm , penstemon , borage , alyssum
, oregano , marjoram , basil and cilantro . Some (the spices) will be over
in an herb patch next to the garden but the rest will be spread around in
the orchard and power line easements . <<They keep the trees and brush cut
back 30 feet on either side of the lines , both for easy access and to help
prevent damage . >>
Oh , and I forgot , some poppies too . But not "that" kind .
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