Mighty good garlic - - -
.We seem to grow pretty good garlic here on WillowTree Farm! Every year we choose the biggest and best cloves to use as seed because those are the most successful in our soil. Most of our crop was Russian Porcelain but we had a few Spanish Roja too. This Fall we plan to add a newcomer Persian Star - a really beautiful purple stripe variety that we got from Tara at Villa Verde (the stall beside ours in the Garlic Fest photo above)
This year I'm also doing a small experiment. Some of our garlic grows with only 2 large cloves per head so I'm going to plant some of those cloves and see if they also grow into 2-clove garlic heads.
10th April 2016
Continuing a look back at earlier this year. Here's a collection of photos showing what was going on in April.
I have wanted to have ducks for some time and finally in March we got a small group. Charles, my ever willing husband, made a beautiful duck house for the new arrivals who promptly refused to use it! We had some fun evenings rounding them up and getting them inside but eventually gave up and found them somewhere they preferred. Ducks don't roost like chickens. Wild ducks assure their safety by sleeping in a group with a lookout for threats and if one is detected they make a dash for the pond or take to the air. Most domestic ducks are too heavy to fly and we don't have a pond so we had to make other safety arrangements for our three. They now recognize their safe area in the storage shed with a safety run attached and happily go there at dusk - thank goodness. We will re-purpose the duck house for new chicken arrivals.
Dabbling ducks make a real mess of any water supply very quickly. They swish their beaks through the water to sort out all the food which leaves the mud and bits to get filtered out into the water creating a soupy morass! Just like chickens ducks are omnivores so they enjoy both plants and small creatures.
As the girls matured we had a good supply of eggs from them but they had a predator-scare one night and they stopped laying after that. I'm not sure if it was the scare or the time of year that put a stop to the laying. As with hens, eggs are a seasonal gift - who wants to raise ducklings or chicks in the winter?
FEBRUARY INTO MARCH
The young, slender, pink stems have been growing quickly and trying to reach the light. They have a delicate texture and flavour and need less sugar than the more robust stems that grow later in the season. We do need to find taller pots to cover the crowns as these stems are still quite short. We cover the crowns for only a short while as the plants will become weak without the energy from the sun.
September 05th, 2016
I guess we've been too busy to blog. Life happens, blogs don't always! Anyway, I'm going to gradually post a selection of photos from 2016 so far to try to get up-to-date!
Turning the very active compost ready to feed the soil!