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Vegetables Coming out our Ears!

  • Vegetables coming out our ears! 16 weeks after beginning to dig this garden! I’m weighing everything so will give updates at the end of each monthto show how much value is coming off the garden each month.
  • We harvested some of our dried beans this week. It’s many years since I’ve grown Mother In Law beans, Gail Aiken grows them for the Institute, and I really really love them. They are dwarf bush beans that are specific drying beans, they are small white beans that make great baked beans, but they do send up short tendrils as if they want to climb, but then they stop. The pods are very short but prolific and as they dry go through an outstandingly beautiful mauve stage. I also harvested our Sinton beans, which are our soup beans. I haven’t finished drying them yet so don’t have weights per sq m available at this stage.
  • The comfrey patch Bob planted so carefully in late November is looking amazing and most plants are at the harvesting stage so we shifted our chickens on to the house site this week.
  • Our aim is to be supplying all the chicken feed, from our site. Comfrey will supply 50% of the protein they need for 7-8 months of the year. There will also be a special alfalfa patch as well especially to feed chickens fish and rabbits. The comfrey patch and the alfalfa patch are at the bottom of the housesite so that they will pick up the any nutrient run off and we can then feed that back up the site to the compost, chickens, rabbits, and fish.
  • We have set up serious worm farms, ( they are eating the cow manure from the house cow and the rabbit and chicken manure ) to grow worms to feed the chickens., year round … (the recently released book called The Small Scale Poultry Flock by Harvey Ussery is the best book I’ve ever seen for addressing everything including how to feed your chickens without industrial grains.)
  • We will make compost in their straw yard so that they can be turning that and feeding from that, and we are also planning the small orchard that will be planted around the chicken yard as a food forest which will be designed to be dropping a wide range of seeds especially for feeding chickens. We are on the edge of shifting to the autumn garden now and over the next 6 weeks our garden which is divided into quarters will be rotating. The quarter of the garden that grew our summer heavy feeders (pumpkins, tomatoes, peppers, greens, cucumbers etc) will become the roots and legumes part of the garden, and the ¼ of the garden that had the roots and legumes will become a carbon crop (oats, barley wheat etc) part of the garden, and the ¼ of the garden that grew our heavy feeding carbon crops ( sweet corn and flour corn) will become the light feeding carbon crops ( broad beans and vetch, and tic beans), and the 1/4 that contains the light feeding carbon crops ( millet, barley, etc ) will be composted and fed heavily and will become our winter heavy feeder ( brassicas, all the greens etc) . Now is a good time to plan that transition and get your seedling in. Check out pages 140 -146 of the Koanga garden guide to see how that works.
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