Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Busy Spring

A lot has happened since my last post.

On May 6th, Susan and I closed on purchasing 20 acres of the property.  We are no longer just tenant farmers, we are the owners!  Only 360 more payments and we'll own it free and clear.

The asparagus which had been transplanted, has now been transplanted outside to it's permanent bed.  Nineteen plants were moved outside.  A couple got bound up in their container and I broke the root ball.  Those seem to be suffering, but I am looking forward to seeing how the rest work out over the first year.

Two weeks ago we planted Gracie's garden.  It is ten rows that are only about five feet long.  It has some corn, green beans, lettuce, carrots among other things.  It also has her lima and pinto beans.  They were a school experiment last year, and we kept all the seeds that developed off the one school seed to replant this year.  Some are already germinated!

Yesterday Susan and I planted the rest of the garden.

  • 9 tomato plants
  • 9 potato holes
  • 6 peppers
  • 1 watermelon mound
  • 2 zucchini mounds
  • 4 cucumber mounds
  • 4 long rows of corn
  • 4.5 rows of green beans (including three types of our own harvested seeds)
  • 1/2 row of snap peas
  • 1 row of radish
  • 1 row of carrots
  • 1 row of onions
  • 1 row of green onions
  • 1 row of kohlrabi
  • 1 row of spinach
  • 1 row of mesclun lettuce
  • 1 row of romaine lettuce
  • 1 row of brussels sprouts
Now the real fun begins.  Weeding!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Transplanting Asparagus

In an earlier post I commented that most of my asparagus germinated at the three week mark, as might be expected.  I looked at my calendar again and realize it was only two weeks.  The problem I am having is I didn't get a good enough light, nor get it low enough, and I am ending up with leggy asparagus.  This picture shows where I have piled up some dirt around the stem to help support it.  It really doesn't look too bad in this picture, it was really drooping prior to my efforts.

I decided my best course of action was to transplant.  As you see in the picture above, I used a pretty deep container for my seed starting.  Turns out, the root as all the way to the bottom.  I didn't think asparagus had a deep root system, but I could be wrong.  This shot of McDonald's cups is the result of my transplanting.  I put the root pretty near the bottom of the cup to allow room to bury a decent amount of the leggy stem.  I even buried some of the ferns.

I am hopeful that this will help strengthen the plants and that the larger container will give it more room to properly root.

My concern is that this seems a lot like the corn I started last year that didn't end up doing well at all.  Their wasn't a real root ball on most of these plants when I transplanted them, so I am afraid of shock too.

Fingers crossed, as this is a project I really want to turn out well.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

One Of These Things Is Not Like The Others

My elation over my first, and early, asparagus was misguided.  As you can see from the picture, now many asparagus seeds have germinated.  That first sprout doesn't look like the others.  I'm thinking we had a rogue seed in our potting soil.  Anyone have any ideas on what it may be?

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

The Future of Asparagus is Brighter

I put light on the newly sprouted asparagus last night.  During the day yesterday we had a lot of activity and have a dozen sprouted so far.  There are 6 from the 2013 crop and 6 from the 2012 crop.  The germination rate is much higher so far on the 2013 crop.

I'm looking forward to seeing if that trend continues over the next couple weeks.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Asparagus Germinates In Record Time

When I planted 60 asparagus seeds on Feb 25th, I was sure I would be watering nothing but dirt for three to six weeks.  Then after just two weeks I saw this!
Now on the 20th day I have three more that poked up.  I need to get light on them soon, but expect many more everyday now that we have hit the three week mark.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Asparagus; Part Deux

In my post from September 23rd, I referenced planting aspargus.  Today I planted the other half of the saved seeds.  There were quite a few more from 2012 than from 2013, but in all I planted over 60 seeds in a seed tray indoors.

My goal is to see which method works better.  Direct seeding in the fall or starting indoors.  I am also testing whether the dried seeds or fresh seeds work better, but only in the direct seeding experiment. 

Look for pictures as we begin to see them sprout.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

In my last few posts I mentioned the woodshed and my attempts to clean it up and make it a usable space.  I still haven't put the wood burning stove in, but I did get all my wood working equipment in place.  I also got the old barn doors from a building in Crawfordsville and mounted those.  

This picture shows the doors from the inside.  The day we put them up, I wouldn't leave the building because I had never been inside of it with the door closed.  All cleaned up and with these beautiful doors I just couldn't leave so I cleaned up and organized a little more.

 This picture is from the outside.  The table will move, it was just a work surface during construction.  At first I was going to paint the entire building and doors white.  But when I put them up, I realized that I like the contrast and may repaint the entire building, but white for the building and red for the doors.

Interesting story about where the doors came from.  The building I work in was originally the heating plant for the city of Crawfordsville.  Originally on that site was a cabin owned by Ambrose Whitlock.  From that cabin were sold land parcels, one of which was the east half of the southwest quarter of Section 34 in Hendricks County.  So the doors on a building where Daniel Kiger purchased his parcel of land, now are in use on that very piece of land.

I find that to be oddly coincidental, and somewhat fortuitous that the Lord has brought me to this position in life with a chance to salvage these doors.

Next up, the wood stove.  Because we need heat as winter approaches.