While mother nature is not caught up to where we should be date wise in spring the date is still middle of May which means one thing, Farm Market starts next week! We are getting everything together to ensure we are ready to go. We will have plenty of eggs and hopefully some early season crops such as radishes. It will be an exciting season!
It has been a wild winter here in Michigan. The weather turned un-seasonally warm and then back to cold again. I was skeptical that we would see a drop of maple syrup come our way, but mother nature surprised me in a good way. In the end we ended up with more maple syrup for our second year then we did last year. Those days have come to an end and we are thankful for the maple syrup we received.
For those of you who have not had the benefit of trying real maple syrup I highly recommend giving it a try. It may be a bit more at the store than the general syrups, but it is well worth it. I highly recommend looking for any local sources you might have available as well.
Winter and spring have been a bit unpredictable this year. We experienced quite a few 60 degree days in January & February while in March we are operating in the teens to low 30's. It is hard to believe that we were outside in a long sleeve t-shirt a few weeks ago.
We are moving ahead towards to goal of spring planting. I am focusing on our plan timing. Today we will be planting more tomato seeds and peppers later this week. We are focused on our timing this year to ensure we can provide the best experience to our customers. I cannot wait to show you all our new varieties. Some are truly unique and will be delectable!
I don't want to jinx us, but we might actually have color coming on some tomatoes. I am trying to contain my excitement. I find myself waiting for tomatoes to ripen ever year. They stay big and green for what feels like an eternity. The sooner the tomatoes turn the sooner we can start to offer our great heirloom varieties at the market. Below is a small sample of some of our tomato varieties.
* Pink Ponderosa
* Garden Peach
* Golden Current
* Pink Blumblbee
* Black Cherry
We are now in July and the farm veggies are starting to ripen. It feels like an eternity as you weed around a plant as it grows. Day after day you see it and look for progress. Most of the time I feel like the plant is frozen and not making any progress. Then when you least expect it veggies begin to appear and ripen. We don't have all the veggies coming in quite yet, but we are making progress and that is all I can ask.
We were blessed in 2015 to purchase a larger property to raise our family on. Looking forward to many years of to come with the room to grow as our hearts desire. Cannot wait for spring 2016!!!
Today we began our journey into a new breed of dairy goats. When pondering the new addition it took some time to research. Obviously picking a breed is based on person preference and long term goals. After researching we found that the Lamancha breed would be the best addition for our family at this time. When our new buck "Simba" arrived we could immediately notice the difference in size between the two breeds (Lamancha & Nigerian). It is one thing to know there will be a difference and another to see just how much of a difference there is. We are happy to say that the bucks seem to be getting along as they start their journey's together. Hopefully in time we will find the right Lamancha doe to add to our herd and begin another journey.
It is the middle of March and yet still we have snow. We are eagerly and impatiently looking for signs of spring. Just a little warmer weather to give us hope that gardens and outdoor play time are in our near future!
The days have been flying by here. We worked to create new goat pens to give our bucks a larger pen to roam. We have also moved all the bucks to our new "animal" barn. The chickens will also be moving into that barn as well for the winter. Making chores a bit easier for us with a one stop shop kind of theory in mind. Winter always complicates things to any way to make it easier is a plus for us.
Who doesn't remember listening to or reading Dr. Seuss's Green Eggs and Ham? While at the feed store this spring I could not pass the Araucana pullets bin. There was only a couple left, but with a higher price tag than the average pullet. Along with less egg production I decided to just buy one with that batch of chicks. I have been highly anticipating the new layers starting just to see do they really lay colored eggs??? By this point in our farming adventure gathering eggs is pretty routine for my family and I. As we gathered eggs today I walked into the coop to see if any eggs had been laid in our end boxes. The hens rarely use those boxes for whatever reason. Of the 12 boxes we have only 3 are laid in on a regular basis. I have seen the hens waiting to use one of those boxes. Anyways as I got to the last box to my surprise I found 3 pastel green eggs waiting for me to come and get. I was so excited that I shouted out about the eggs to my husband. Good thing we do not have close neighbors or they probably would have thought I was crazy. Of course my husband thought I was a little off since he did not remember me buying that hen. As soon as I got inside our home I opened up the carton to show our boys. They were so excited to see a "cool" egg. It was different than the normal brown eggs we have been getting for years now. Between their reaction and my excitement I think next years breed selections will have more criteria than just egg production and climates.
We truly enjoy spending time on our mini farm and working as a family. Making things on our own as often as possible