Week May 15 (not posted till Week After)

Sun: GH – repot eggplant – Basil out? Back in? Ashes & cover Squash
Mon: finish mowing? Clean stalls – set scallions – COLD
Tues:– thin carrots – mow – RAIN – laundry, closet – start Feta – COLD
Wed: set Basil – – mow –RAIN clean cupboards – press Feta
Thurs: mow – weed beds – set Basil ?– brine Feta
Fri: Market prep

Tired of hoodies! Tired of leggings! Tired of layers! Tired of mud boots! Tired of wearing socks to bed, hats in the house. Tired of …oh Nan, quit complaining! This day last week, it was 90 here! As readers of my Market newsletter have heard over the years, a cold spell in mid-May means a good Blackberry crop, because it keeps the blossoms from dropping until they’re fully pollinated. Also a good honey crop: locust trees are heavy with bloom, persisting in the coolth.

NB I am not tired of a cheery fire!

Herd update: 2 of the Dec kids, Ivy 61 & Juniper 41, have a new home – together, as I hoped. Lily 11, Columbine’s big, handsome doe kid, joins the breeding flock. February does Lilac 81 & Warda 111 are promised to Kayla, an adept hand with goats after just a couple months. Their brothers go to processing in a couple weeks. Trillium’s 3 will go, or stay, in late July.

Setting the Squash seedlings was an achievement, but a week after covering them from cold, I was watering them! Then a cooler spell gave them a break to get some growth. But it brought a new risk, slugs, which could quickly chew them down to the ground. Garden tip! Wood ash strewn in a thick ring around the base of each plant, perfect slug deterrent. Go out and try it on your Squash. Then imagine doing it 144 times.

I start Squash in the greenhouse in a larger round-cell tray, which allows me to set seedlings when most people are just sowing seed. It also makes for even spacing. Most years it pays off: but if the weather is unfavorable when they’re set out, I’d have been better off just direct sowing. A gamble like so much else.

Speaking of gambles, last Thursday I did not set Basil. Even without frost, Basil just doesn’t thrive in cold soil or cool nights. So it will need some sun to warm the beds, and then reemay to hold the warmth. Luckily the ground was well-worked-up last year for eggplant, so I just mulched it in February, and I’ll weed the annuals that have sprung up. Then we’ll see how this no-till idea works.  Next week.

If it’s dry enough to mow between the beds, I’ll get busy weeding. Last week, in the dry weather, both JD-140’s had battery trouble. Now it’s too wet to mow, both start like a brushfire. Wouldn’t you just know.