Setting up a garden takes such a long time, but we're off and running! The whole summer, we watched the shadows from the trees and noted the rainy low spots, and we finally made the decision to place our vegetable garden in front of the barn. Since Tennessee soil is so tough to work, we … Continue reading Setting up the Garden (Free is good)
When we had our hog processed, I asked the butcher to cut the hams in half. That is probably the wisest thing I've ever done in my entire life. Do you know how big a whole ham is? Geez. The answer is "HUGE." So, with 1/2 a ham, I can cure and cook with normal … Continue reading Curing a Ham
First, what is a homesteader? The term means different things to different people. Most folks agree with the basic premise that it means living off the land, but the amount of "land" and the amount of "living" varies. Some think it means going completely off grid, while others think it means having just a garden … Continue reading Homesteading: How to Know When You’ve Made it
Before you get in a tizzy that I'm swearing, I'm not. A CHIT is the green sprout that grows from the eye of a potato. One of my favorite parts of farming is planting potatoes! Do you plant your own potatoes? If not, here's the scoop... First, we need to review that day you were … Continue reading Look at this Chit – or – Planting Potatoes
So sweet and yummy! What do you do with all these berries? Make jam, of course! Once you taste your own fresh strawberry jam, you'll never buy store-bought jam again! And, if you've never canned anything in your life, this is a good place to start. It takes about a half hour or so and … Continue reading The Strawberries are Here!
I've been planning to get rabbits to fertilize my garden, but as busy as we are, there has been no time to plan, and even less time to build a rabbit hutch. I've learned after many years of marriage, planning doesn't work very well around here anyway. I've learned just do it now and we'll … Continue reading The Animal Whisperer: The Bunnies are Here!
One of the things we love most around here is homemade jelly/jam/preserves. Strawberry is number 1, but our next fav is a toss-up between blackberry and grape. Concord Seedless Grapes are the perfect thing to grow for jelly. We bought six grapevines from Willis Orchards and they sent us seven, so we're going to have … Continue reading Grapevine Support
Look what I bought!! 1 - 4' Fuji Apple Tree 1 - 4' Golden Delicious Apple Tree 1 - 4' Gala Apple Tree 1 - 3' Compact Stella Cherry Tree 2 - 4' American Crabapple Tree 1 - 4' Persian Mulberry Tree 2 - 4' Belle of Georgia Peach Tree 2 - 4' Bartlett Pear … Continue reading Planning the Orchard (Plan B)
We’ve suffered a major loss on the farm due to hawks and lepto. I’m sure you know hawks like to grab little ones such as chickens and bunnies, but perhaps you don’t know what lepto is. Short for leptospirosis, it is a nasty and often fatal bacteria that comes from the urine of cattle and … Continue reading Losses on the Farm: Hawks and Lepto
The most important thing you can do on your homestead to protect your livestock is install some good fencing! And, this not only goes for goats and horses, it's for all of the animals in your charge. Sadly, our new farm has zero fencing, and I can speak for everyone involved when i say, "Fencing … Continue reading Labor on Labor Day – or – Fencing Sucks