Sunday, July 24, 2016

Sunday Walkabout 7-24

look closely...
there's a rainbow!
things can't be that bad...

I’m hot.
temperatures in the mid 90's
with humidity around 50%

I’m tired.

…and the weeds and bugs are threatening to overwhelm me…

the little black things are flea beetles
the holes are what they ate in a matter of HOURS



That’s no news. And, I’m pretty sure it’s not what you came to read.

It’s just July.

I always feel this way in July.

This is the time of year when it’s really (really) difficult to keep going. But, there are still succession plantings to seed and fall crops to plant. Any preparations for winter sales need to be happening now. RIGHT NOW. There are piles of vegetables that need processing and battles with pests that must be won. The animals (and crops) need extra care in the hot, dry weather. So, despite the heat and the bugs, we must keep going.
trellising tomatoes

But, I must admit, it’s kind of hard to hear everyone talk about taking their “much-needed vacation” knowing that…well, I’ve got squash to pick or beans to can or pickles to make…or something garden-related that demands my attention RIGHT NOW. Because, around here, v-a-c-a-t-i-o-n is just a word…not a reality.
my claim about cucumbers is proving true...
non-trellised cukes (gross!)

trellised cukes

Although, the Boss considers it a “mini-vacation” when we take lambs to the processor (or pick up the lambchops). So, I guess my claim is invalid. However, a trip on the interstate with lambs in the trailer isn’t at all relaxing! (or maybe I’m just seriously uptight) And a trip to Edinburg to drop of lambs topped our to-do list for the week.

“Vacation” or not, the trip very nearly didn’t even happen at all. We had the day all planned, we would haul the lambs, make a detour around the road construction, get some lunch and pick up the farm truck from the inspection place where we had left it the day before (they were busy and we didn’t have time to wait around) and get back to our regularly scheduled activities. Cool…good plan.

Lamb hauling day dawned. The lambs were at the barn. Everything was a go.
ready to go


The trailer hitch for the xterra was sitting in the truck. The truck that was at the inspection station in Draft. Which meant our carefully made plans were suddenly not going to work. Because it’s really hard to pull a trailer without a hitch. And, if we were going to get the hitch, we might as well pick up the truck, so we had to wait for the place to open…
but, if we hadn't gone out so early,
we would have missed seeing...


...seemed pretty appropriate during the "full buck moon"

I had visions of “one of those kind of days”, which (thankfully) did not prove to be the case. The trip itself (with its interstate travel) was completely uneventful and we got the lambs delivered to the processor’s before the sweltering July heat became an issue.

heatwave map from the National Weather Service
(according to this, we're not even all that hot!)
And, the July heat is indeed an issue. Not just here, but everywhere. The entire country seems to be experiencing a heatwave. A serious heatwave. Here in the Valley, it feels like we’re cooking. It’s really hot and really humid and everything is drying out in the baking sun.

corn is growing great!

But, it is July.

July means it’s time to plant the fall potatoes. 

 ready for planting
we put in 250# of seed potatoes

So, heatwave or not…dry and dusty or not…the Boss got to tilling.
first pass with the tiller
see the dust?

While he tilled, I salvaged what I could off the broken peach tree out back. The few peaches looked beautiful, but the Japanese beetles arrived in force last week, (and the tree finally broke completely) so it was now or never. I left the peaches to ripen fully in a box in the shop. In reality, the peaches aren’t really so beautiful, they’ve got bad places and bugs…but, considering that they’re the only fruit we will have this year, I’m thankful for them. Working them up will be a project for later.
Japanese beetles don't leave much for us

Planting the potatoes is pretty much the same as planting the Spring potatoes (and every other potato planting). Once they were all “plunked”, he ran back through with the tractor and hilled them up. Every time he does this, I have to give thanks. For years and years, we did all that work by hand and I am SO thankful we don’t have to do it that way anymore.

laying out the rows

all the "plunked" potatoes

finished project
(see the Boss WAY out there, picking beans?)

With the potato planting finished, we could pick beans (again) and begin to pray for rain. We don’t irrigate the potato gardens, so we are dependent upon the skies for natural water. The forecast wasn’t looking too promising. But, we were grateful for a small shower on Thursday evening and hope to have new potatoes in about 60 to 80 days.

afternoon rain

potato garden after the rain

and, just like that…it was time for Market once more.
even without tomatoes sales were great!
(and the tomatoes are coming...)

The heat certainly didn’t keep the customers away and it was another great day for sales! There weren’t a lot of leftovers (which is a good thing). But, there were enough for us to put up for winter. Pickles and relish are among my “things to do” for the upcoming week. …and maybe some canned squash and frozen zucchini…

'cause "vacay"...? We don't even know the meaning of the word!

isn't she cute?

Remy hopes you’re having a 

Happy Sunday! 

Thanks for stopping by. Come back and “visit” again real soon!

this may be my last post for a while...
my desk seems to be possessed by a crazy kitten!


  1. Delightful post as usual Barbara - I am always heartened by the way you both keep going regardless of weather, failure of vehicles, invasion of pests and the like.
    And, as usual, your stand at market looks first class as though you didn't have a single care in the world.
    That kitten is a sweetie!

  2. Those are some nasty beetles eating your peaches. I'm guessing you don't spray. When things get overwhelming you can always have a little kitten therapy. Hang in there, the heat can't last forever. -Jenn

    1. Thanks for commenting, Jenn!
      I know you're right about the just seems interminable right now.

  3. A hot and busy week by the sounds of it. Least your markets are doing really well. That must give you a great high each time, and make all the hard work worthwhile.

    I totally understand the vacation feeling, or lack there of. We missed ours this year too. We only really get the chance mid-winter and things just didn't go our way. Oh well... there is always next year.

    1. And, I'm sure you know just how many times we all say "there is always next year"!