Monday, April 9, 2012

Spring in photos

Early spring in the garden- March 15th
     Things are moving quickly here on the homestead. Last week we became the proud owners of four bee colonies. They are hard at work and adjusting well. Next week we'll getting two more hives and hopefully two more the week after that. Strictly speaking, I suppose this place is more an apiary than a farm. That said, the bees require little intervention so I'm spending most of my time getting the garden going.

     My garlic wasn't looking so good, it had a lot of brown tops and wasn't growing quickly. I made a mulch of dried leaves from the forest floor and spread that around them and then misted the leaves with a stinging nettle mixture and they seem to be improving. Of course, in my desperation to keep them alive I didn't apply any scientific method so now I don't what was effective.

     The property has lots of wild strawberries that I'm constantly discovering. Here I have taken wild plants and put them in the garden, by using organic fertilizers and controlling their environment I'm hoping they might produce a yield similar to conventional strawberry plants- we'll see.

Mustard greens...I think.
     Can anyone tell me if these are mustard greens or rutabaga? I guess I'll find out eventually. My seed trays got mixed up early on and now I'm not sure what anything is that isn't obvious. Oh well, live and learn, and whatever they are they look great!

White Wisteria by the front door- now full of bees!

Four working hives and an empty fifth (we might still catch a swarm...)

One of the more than 50 hazelnut trees we planted- it already has some leaves!

Grape vines getting their first leaves.

     So that's the latest. I'm glad spring has finally arrived and  is offering the rewards of flowers, green leaves and maturing fruits. The winter months were making me feel as if things would never happen around here. Now that I have America to chase away the cats and foxes, I'm thinking it might be time to try my hand with geese again. Stay tuned!