No, not Christmas, it’s SPRING!!! Spring comes on the early side in the Pacific Northwest, and this homesteader is giddy with excitement. We’re still getting plenty of rainy weather, but there have been enough warm, sunny days to bring on a bad case of Spring fever.
For me, that means running outside the moment the rain stops and the clouds part, because there is SO MUCH TO DO! Seriously, my to-do list is astonishing. Sometimes I don’t even wait for the rain to stop, I just put on my hood and go out in it. Other days are too beautiful to get much work done, and I spend the day dancing around my backyard like it’s the meadow in The Sound of Music. Okay, it was just that one time.
This has always been my favorite season. Fall is a close second for me, but since fall is followed by winter and spring is followed by summer, Spring wins! That’s my logic, anyway.
Blossoms are popping out and the promise of warmer weather looms ahead, with garden bounty and long days spent outside. It’s a busy time of year for any gardener, but I’ve given myself an extra dose of responsibilities this year to prepare for the expansion of Bold Souls Micro Farm!
- I’ve been planning & implementing a garden extension for weeks. This will give me 75 more square feet of growing space than I had last year. I’m trying out some new items this season, including asparagus, butternut squash, pumpkins and leeks. This bed was built with re-purposed materials from around our homestead, including the wine bottles from some kind of bottle tree the previous owners built. I’m using the bottles to help warm the soil. Hopefully. If not, at least they add a splash of color.
- Garlic and onions that were planted last fall look to be doing well, and I built 2 potato cages for my second try at growing potatoes. Last year saw a tiny, unexpected harvest, which I discovered when I went to move the soil to the new cages. Surprise!
Seeds are started and growing nicely in my kitchen. This is actually the first time I’ve ever started seeds, but I learned my lesson last year. We may have a long growing season here, but not enough HEAT to really get things ripening quickly, so the earlier I can get things started, the better. I’ll also be trying peppers and tomatoes in the greenhouse this year to compare to how they do out in the beds.
- Orchard plans have been drawn up and the first of the fruit trees planted. We’re putting in 7 dwarf fruit trees (cherry, apple, 2 pawpaw, apricot, peach and nectarine), 2 almond trees and huckleberry, cranberry & currant bushes. Oh, and a kiwi vine! And a Bay tree!
- My new Warre Beehive has been placed outside, where it patiently awaits the Italian bees that are arriving on April 12th. (!!!)
- I’m new to beekeeping and can’t wait to dive in. I bought myself a bee suit and all of the necessary supplies for Christmas, and I’ve been itching to get going. In fact, I’ve been trying on my bee suit in secret and trying to find a way to make it look less dorky. So far, not possible.
- 4 Baby goats were born in March, bringing our goat total up to 7, temporarily. 4 or 5 will be going to their new homes in May.
- I recently added a mating pair of Holland lop rabbits who are expecting a litter any day now. Probably should have waited on this project, but hey.
- We have 6 chicks in the brooder and a hen who decided to go broody a little too late. She’s sitting on 4 eggs that may or may not be fertilized, so we’ll see how that goes! If she doesn’t hatch anything out, I’m going to try to sneak in my chicks and see if she’ll decide to mother them.
So as you can see, it’s pure craziness over here. Add all of that to having 3 kids in Little League, and it’s apparent that I won’t have my head screwed on straight until at least June. Yes, it’s wonderful, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything!