Jim and I worked on the house, scraping, spackling, painting, and putting up drywall. We are on the verge of reclaiming several rooms at once! Generally, I did a good job badly. I followed Jim around, worked slowly, complained, and put tasks off. And we laughed about it pretty much non stop. I don't know where my obstinate attitude came from, but it was horribly enjoyable to be a slacker.
I think my favorite thing that happened was getting the garlic planted. We have been waiting and waiting for our ground to dry out. Miracle of miracles, the rain held off. It was windy and the sun was out for consecutive days and the ground began to dry but it was still to wet to drive on without damaging the soil structure so we had to use an old trick-- do the work when the ground is frozen! Our neighbor Mike came down early Sunday morning before the ground thawed and we spread compost over the beds. For the past four years, we have been doing this by filling the bed of our truck and then slowly driving over the field while someone manually spread the material with a shovel. It was so much work. It took so much time. It was so tiring. This year, we got an upgrade, an ancient New Idea compost spreader. It is like a twenty foot wagon with a conveyor belt on the bottom (apron chains) and beaters on the back. It attaches and is powered by our tractor through the PTO. Mike loaded up the spreader time and time again and I drove it over the field. The conveyor belt pushed the heaping mounds of steaming composted leaves towards the beaters, which spread it perfectly, evenly, over the width and length of our beds. It didn't take much more than a couple hours.
Although we are running camera free lately, I imagined taking a picture of our new old machine with the caption "Sorry Jim, but I think I am in love with our compost spreader!"
And the rain held off longer, allowing us to work the compost into the soil. And then longer still, allowing us to prep the beds. And Thursday, it happened. Emily and I shuffled up and down the aisles between the beds, pushing cloves of garlic several inches into the soil. And then it was done! What a surprise that a task can linger on a list for so long and then suddenly be gone. I am so glad to have another one of the big three off of our reduced fall expectations list (potatoes out of the ground was the first to drop off). Still clinging to my leg: build that darned hoop house!
We will be back at market this Saturday with all the vegetables and the cheer. Can't wait to see y'all!
Lake Divide Crew
Beets by the pound
Brussels sprouts by the stalk and by the pint
Cabbage: pointy sweet, big green classic, savoy, red
Carrot by the pound
Kohlrabi: Beastly beauties!
Greens: Arugula, mustard, tatsoi, Tokyo bekana (bok choi lettuce), spinach (limited)
Collards: Even sweeter now!
Potatoes: Cal white versatile, Dark Red Norland: versatile, elfe- waxy buttery
Sweet Potatoes- the tiny ones are my favorite roasted whole or tossed in stew
Radishes- Daikon, green meat (sweet), black, watermelon, and pink
Rutabaga: The turnips mild cousin. Creamy and sweet. Excellent roasted.
Winter squash: Delicata, Spaghetti, Festival dumpling & Long Pie!
Turnips - purple top and golden globe and sweet white!