Week May 8:
Sunday: GH – container basil – SORT!!
Mon: Nightshade due – trellis peas –
Josh & Bri, stakes – Moon & Young to visit
Tues: till, manure, set squash: sow gourds*
make chevre
Wed: cult parsley – mow – drain chevre
Thurs: terraces – set scal – cult peas –
Fri: Market prep

Discipline, of which I am sorely in need!  it’s easy to like sowing, potting up seedlings, hands-on greenhouse (GH) work. But since the Universe tends to chaos, if all you do is the fun stuff, pretty soon you won’t have room to work. So, Greenhouse Rule #1: before playing with plants, spend a half hour tidying, sorting pots, rinsing used ones and setting them in the sun to sterilize (safer than bleach, greener than buying new).

Monday brought a setback for this breeding season: it’s now pretty clear Nightshade didn’t catch from late Fall’s breeding. Her March episode of ketosis was probably just poor nutrition, and the fact that the dear girl still was producing milk, 5 months after being turned dry. Well, treatment hasn’t hurt: she’s in good flesh now for an open (non-pregnant) doe. I’ll give it another couple days, to be sure there’s no kid on the way, and then try milking her. If it’s not enough to bother with, she can have a rest till Fall. I’m trying to milk one of the crossbreds, who has weaned her last kid but doesn’t like the milking process (other than the carrot part) more than about half. What she didn’t spill or plunk her foot into made a trial batch of chevre: for dependable supplies, we may have to wait for Trillium to wean the Three Little Pigs.

Now, some good news: click each pic for larger detail –

(we’ll just overlook mechanical troubles with both JD-140’s and the sad fate of “Wed: mow.”)

Finally, fellowship: Josh and Briana to swap several hours sorting all my old tobacco stakes, for a couple dozen for their burgeoning garden(and a couple pancakes). Then a visit from a very old friend, now based in California, and her grown-up daughter. Moon has just completed a degree in Acupuncture and Asian herbal medicine! I learned quite a few new (ancient!!) uses for the commonest weeds. And I thought I knew plants! We’re looking forward to a longer stay, when she can hike the woods and find even more species (and uses) to remind me I don’t know everything ;-)

*Gourds NB: not the inedible bright-colored ones that swamp Farmers Markets in Fall. These are 4 species of edible vining cucurbitae, that will take over the trellises when the Snap Peas are done (and done nitrifying the soil for them.) So stop by Market in late July or August, to try Karela, Loofah, Tinda or Tatume.