Tomorrow should be a nice busy day outside. I, personally, love being outdoors whether it is raining, sunny, windy, or snowing. Maybe not driving in the snow, but in general, snow is okay with me. There is some sort of saying from Norway or Sweden (?) that goes along the lines of ‘there’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing’. I’m sure I got that wrong, but you get the idea.
We have a great day of apple harvesting, animal habitat cleaning, carrot pulling, pepper picking, Rabbitry securing, beehive bundling, and cool-air loving ahead of us. Ah… Autumn, I love you. Perhaps not the habitat cleaning and poop scooping, but I have to do that year-round so why start complaining now?
Apples should be ripe from the one apple tree we have access to. I think they may be Pippins? I’m not sure. They are small, green, and tart as hell, but they will make great pies (along with some cinnamon and Frühlingskabine honey) and apple cider vinegar. I am going to attempt to use the apple scraps for making vinegar. There are quite a few loose recipes around the Internet, so when I get started tomorrow, I’ll let you know which one I end up using. It doesn’t look difficult and fairly fool-proof. If I have too many apple scraps, the chickens and rabbits will have a glorious treat. The chickens get all of the overly wormy ones anyway. Oh! And I am super excited about using my fancy hand-crank apple peeler/corer for the first time. I found a nice metal one at the local hardware store for just under $20. Yeah baby!
Our second batch of carrots are ready to pull this weekend. There are mostly Danvers Half Longs, because they love our crappy sandy soil, but there are a few leftover Parisian round carrots in the patch as well. The next round of carrots are already in the ground. My father gave am a bag of Scarlet carrots to test out two weeks ago and so far they have not popped up. If nothing shows up soon, I may have to plant more Danvers over the top of the loser Scarlets.
With the cool nights and chilly breezes we have been experiencing, it is time to put the wall boards up on the Rabbitry. First I want to hose them off after the dry and dusty summer we had here. It’s just nice to start a season off with clean equipment, ya know? It is also about time to wrap the beehives up in tar paper to insulate them from the impending winter. That is pretty much a five minute task though.
I have also started to reach out to my local community to see if anyone out there wants to show me the ropes in dairy goats and/or pigs. I’m not sure I really want to raise pigs, but I would like me some home-raised and smoked ham. My family would never say ‘no’ to bacon either. Who would? I also feel like I need some hands-on experience with dairy animals. I have never milked anything in my life. Now is a good time to start! Books can teach you an abundance, but nothing compares to real life experience. We are planning to buy a house/farm/homestead in the next year (*knock on wood*) and I would be more comfortable getting started with larger livestock knowing a few tricks from the get-go. So hopefully I can find a couple people to mentor me for a few weekends throughout the year.
What are your plans for this weekend?