Monday, May 25, 2015

Bunting, eating greens, too many plants

 In preparation for our Midsummer celebration, I made a length of bunting;  it's of various scraps out of my scrap bag from some old clothing, curtains, and a sheet.  The main pieces of these fabrics have gone into making other things (for instance, the sheet became the backing for a quilt I made), and I save the smallish scraps for projects such as this.  The bunting isn't hemmed or finished in any way;  it's just sewn to a long piece of bias tape (again from my stash).  I have another set of triangles all cut out, ready to be made into another.
 I picked this bouquet of bluebells, honesty, and peony leaves last week.  Time for a new flower arrangement now.
A couple times a week I've been gathering greens from the garden for our dinner;  mainly kale and chard, and a bit of purple sprouting broccoli.  My broccoli is from a two year old plant (planted spring 2013).  It produced florets last year, and then continued to grow after flowering, unlike the rest of its compatriots.  Maybe it'll keep growing this year too. 

The bulk of my greens are from last year's plants, with nearly all of them going to seed now.  I've let the mizuna and chard go to flower, and will collect their seeds;  the rest (kale, broccoli, cabbage, pak choi) will not be allowed to flower, in order to prevent cross-pollination with the mizuna.  However, I've plenty of replacements this year, growing well with only a little slug damage, and not many losses.  Soon I should be able to start harvesting the new kale in earnest.  I'm keeping a record of what I'm harvesting, by weight.  Maybe I should keep records for the chickens too:  eggs produced, and feed given. 

We'll probably integrate the chicks in with adults quite soon.  Yesterday morning I heard a definite attempt at crowing from one of the little cockerels.  He's not loud, but I fear it won't be long before he's in the pot, with the rest soon after.  I was kind of hoping we could hold off till around August--but not if they're crowing!  I think they are about 8 weeks old now, which is the age for slaughter in commercial chickens.  Ours are not as large as our adult hens, but they are pretty big, and should be able to defend themselves (or run away) from bullying when we merge flocks.  Additionally, I'll allow them the entire back garden for a week or two, so there will be plenty of safe spaces.  There will be 18 of them altogether:  8 hens, and 10 adolescents. 

Today I continued planting out the multitude of plant starts I grew from seed;  I sheet mulched another bed, and got a good number of Brussels sprouts and chard into it, with a couple of artichokes, too.  I'm not sure how it happened, but I ended up with about 50 Brussels sprouts starts.  Nearly all of them are planted out now, with only about six or so left to go.  However, I still have quite a lot of other plants remaining:  celeriac, climbing beans, zuccini, lettuce; and various herbs, chard, kale.  So many!

1 comment:

Kim Zuch said...

Sounds like you've been busy! I haven't posted in a long time because it's been TOO busy, but I'm hoping to be able to soon! I like reading yours though, about sewing and gardening :)