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Wednesday, January 30, 2008

No Subject Specified

No secret that I am a bibliophile, this is a well established fact. This morning I was at a loss as to what topic to broach. As in my usually manner I turned around and grabbed the first book off my homesteading, diy, cookbook bookshelf for an idea. The first book I pulled out was Complete Handyman Encyclopedia Vol. 25. Opening it randomly took me to a page about growing your own peaches, but I have already talked about peaches here. The next subject was on other orchard maintenance, something else I have written about here. So I went to grab another book. This one turned out to be the Complete Handyman Encyclopedia Vol. 22, and guess what it was. . . you are correct, it was all about gardening.

Am I to take this as an omen? A sign that I should lecture you on gardening once again? Or should I solicit questions about gardening from you, my wonderful readers?

I realize that I have a freakishly early garden going inside right now, and it is only the end of January. This is the time we usually sit around, looking through all the wonderful catalogs, drooling over the heritages, and wishing that this cool looking fruit/vegetable wasn't a hybrid.

If you have a question, something you have been wanting to ask, please, leave it in replies and I will be happy to answer it to the best of my knowledge.

Now for an update on the homestead.

My oven has taken on a mind of its own. While baking it goes on and off when it deems it necessary, either burning or under cooking my breads. Fortunately for me, my neighbor whose ducks were stolen mentioned that she was getting a new to her stove. Nothing was wrong with hers, it was just outdated, and would I like to have it. YES! OH YES! Well actually I am a little more coy then that. Now I have a working oven, and with a little bake test, discovered it runs slightly hotter then my old one, but not a problem, I just decrease the baking time by a few minutes. Today I bake!

After my father died, my wonderful friends over on livejournal decided they would send me a hug box. A wonderful goody bag that any homesteader would be proud to receive. Included was a certificate to the McMuarry Hatchery. Yesterday I place my order for, Mottled Houdans, Black Cochins, Partridge Cochins, Golden Polish, Black Minorcas, and Araucanas, now to catch the thieves before the chicks arrive.


Gina said...

I have the same issues with my oven. I can't even bake a decent cookie! Yay, on your new oven!

I haven't ordered my chicks yet. What a great "hug" to receive (a gift cert. from the hatchery).

I have been reading about sourdough starters because I have had it on my goal list for some time. I found a free starter (well, it cost self addressed stamped env.) that is supposedly form the oregon trail.

Have you ever started your seeds this early before (I forget what zone you are in)?

alrescate said...

Oh congrats on your new oven! That is an important piece of equipment for you!

BoysMom said...

Okay, I have a question or three. We are moving. (He, the geek with the career who is sick of his bosses, has been informed that this is enough moving: we will be purchasing property and staying this time. Well, so probably one more move, since we'll have to rent until we find the place to buy.)
The area targeted for this move is much warmer than here, zone six, 165 day growing season. It's also wetter, but not that much. Enough that wheat is dry farmed, not enough to set off anyone's asthema from mold spoors in the air. No water wars there.
What would you look for in a site to buy? What sort of soil tests should be done before closing? I know the well must be tested. Is amount of acreage or surface water on the poperty more valuable? (It looks like a couple acres with water or twenty or so without, priceways.)

Phelan said...

Gina, there was 3 gift certifactes in the box, 2 for seeds and 1 for chicks. Also books and seeds (packets), most of the plants I have going are from that hug box. There was organic creams and balms, one for my tats ~giggle~ It was great!

Would you be willing to share some of that starter if you get it? I know there is some very old ones about.

No, I have never started seeds this early before, I am in zone 6, but we have something planed. It is another one of my...stay tuned, projects.

Alrescate, right now, yes.

Boysmom, what I would have done if I had known I would be homesteading can be found here

As for the amount of surface water vs acreage, it depends on what you want to do with the land. A pond can always be made later. Which is more valuable, anything with water will cost more, but the further from a city you are, the cheaper the land.

Call the local extention office on soil testing, they will know what should be tested for in your area, heavy metals are the main concern. The extention office will also be able to test it for you at a very good price. Ours comes out for free and it is $7 a vial.

Robbyn said...

congrats on the new oven and the chicks you'll be seeing soon!

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