Big garden area, progress

Today, my daughter and I got some progress done on the old garden area that we mulched with straw this spring.

We didn’t put anything under it, so things did start growing through it.

This is taken from one corner, next to the gooseberry bush and raspberries.

It looks a lot worse than it is. Partly because some of the weeds are so big, they take up more space on the surface than what they take up through the mulch. Partly because the mulch itself had seeds in it, and we’ve got oats growing in there, now.

We wanted to cover it, but first, we needed to kill this stuff.

Yes, we used herbicide on it. No, I’m not the least bit bothered by that.

Before we started, we tried to set up a hose to wash up later – and to spray any kittens who might come too close.

I’ve had some problems with the hoses. We’re down to two again, despite my repairs to them. There is, however, a garden tap. Basically, it’s a tap at the garden with a pipe running to the house, then a section of hose that can be screwed on to the water tap at the rear of the house. We’d never needed to test it out last year, so this was a good time to do it!

Yeah. That’s water spraying out of the ground, next to one of the wood piles.

I tried turning on the garden tap itself. Some water did start to come out, which turned really brown, then stopped altogether.

So I tried hooking up a pair of shorter hoses to the house tap, instead. One of them was spraying like crazy at the tap. When I switched to the other hose, it was fine.

So… we were down to one hose. *sigh*

While my daughter sprayed the garden, I worked on taking the pieces of wire that sewed the two sheets of black tarp together, out.

There was quite a lot of it. Some of the pieces were quite long and were done in a running stitch. On one section, there were two pieces used to created a double running stitch!

Getting it out was a challenge.

The kittens were very interested in the tarps!

After I got the wire out – and got scissors to cut away the fraying pieces that were catching on everything, I was able to spread them both out.

When the spraying was done, we left this area for a while, and I went back to working on cleaning around the old wood pile. After hauling another wheel barrow load to the pile near the burn barrel, I took a side trip into the barn, where I’d seen some tarps. The two black tarps are big, but not big enough!

While moving things to be able to access on of the tarps. I took a closer look at the old hoses that were in the way, and decided to try one of them out.

Much to my shock, it works just fine! No leaks or cracks, even though it’s really stiff from being in the barn for who knows how long.

So, we are back to two hoses. 😀

Later, my daughter and I spread the two black tarps over as much of the mulched area we could cover, while still making sure there is overlap. Then we checked out the two rolled up tarps I’d found in the barn.

One turned out to be an insulated tarp. We weren’t going to use that, even if it weren’t too small. We’ll save it for something else.

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It turned out to be really huge!

Plus, it has grommets, so we can use tent pegs to pin it down.

We started to do that, but the ground is so hard, we actually bent some of the pegs.

Then, we had a visitor. A mom and her daughters came to look at the kittens to potentially adopt one. They stayed and played with the kittens, and took some pictures, for quite a while. I learned they got our phone number from the vet in town.

I had gone to the vet this morning, with updated pictures of the kittens, and little write-ups about each one, printed out. This family had actually phoned this clinic, asking about kittens, since they are also a shelter, and were given our number.

They will think about which one they will take and get back to us in about a week.

At least I hope so. I’d hate to get ghosted again. 😦

By the time they left, all the aches and pains were kicking in, and I had definitely overdone it on my broken toe, so I didn’t go back to get pictures of the tarps on the garden area, nor get back to working on the wood pile area.

It’ll be at least a day before I get back to it, since we’ll be doing our monthly shop in the city tomorrow. I’ll also be picking up a 5 kilo bucket of liquid honey I ordered yesterday, before we head out. My daughter is wanting to try her hand at making mead. 🙂

Until then, it’s time to shower off the bus spray and herbicide, pain killer up and go to bed early!

The Re-Farmer

Clean Up: old wood pile area, a bit of progress

I didn’t get as much done cleaning up in the old wood pile as I’d hoped, but a little is better than none!

This is most of the area I focused on today. I got more old pallets out, and a bit more rotten wood. For the most part, it’s too rotten to even pick up, but I’m hoping to at least get out the pieces with nails. I also cleared out some saplings that were in the wood pile my sister and her husband had made in the big garden, the summer before we moved out.

Most of the pile in the foreground is what I’d move there last year. I had intended to find uses for it, but I have access to better types of wood than I knew of back then, so I will be adding it to the chipping pile. I’ve got cherry wood set aside, and I have more than enough to work on, so any more cherry I take down is going to the chipping pile, too. There is still some apple wood I’d set aside by the old dog house. I’ll see what condition it’s in as I move it, before I make any decisions about it.

The pile of debris is growing, and I’m at a loss as to what to do with it. With the possibility of nails being in there, I can’t compost it, but there is so much soil in there, I just don’t think it’ll burn well.

I think, after I clean up more around the outhouse, I’ll spread it in the back. There is an access to the pit under the outhouse there, so it can be emptied as needed, so it should be kept open and clear. It’s not an area that will get traffic, to the risks of people finding nails is lower, and we certainly won’t be gardening or anything back there.

That’s one possibility, anyhow.

I did find a few things while moving pallets out.

A bent piece of sheet metal, two electrical insulators, and a perfectly intact tea cup – not even a chip on it! – buried under the pallet fence.

Weird!

In between working on this, we got some progress on the garden area we mulched, and had some company, but I will write about that in my next post. 🙂

The Re-Farmer

Clean up: old wood pile, progress

Things actually got chilly last night, and we had a wonderfully cool morning! I was really looking forward to getting some progress in the yard.

Of course, by the time I actually got out there, it had warmed up considerably. 😀 It was nice, working in the shade, though.

With the way things have been doing this year, I decided that getting this old wood pile cleared was my one primary goal for the summer. Anything beyond that was gravy.

I may have messed myself up with this particular goal! 😀 It’s turning out to be a more challenging job than I expected!

This is why.

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Bonus pictures

Taken recently while in town, at a park near the lake.

This is in a park I sometimes go to to play Pokemon Go. 😀

I don’t know what type of lily that is in the top picture, but the bottom picture is yarrow. They have some in bright pink as well, and you can tell they are starting to cross pollinate.

Yarrow is one of those things that grows wild where we are. Growing wild in hard soil, watered only by the rain, they don’t get big like these ones. Some consider them a weed, but I like them. I’ve read that adding their leaves to a compost pile will speed the composting, but I haven’t really had the chance to confirm that.

The Re-Farmer

Critter of the Day: Junk Pile kitten

This photo goes back to June 18. This was one of the first times we saw Dave and Keith’s sibling, since their mom moved him out from under the concrete steps at the East door, and we weren’t entirely sure where they had moved to.

It was quite a surprise to see this handsome kitten traipsing around the yard by the junk pile.

What a handsome kitty!

Even then, not that long after we added them to the maternity ward, he was clearly quite a bit bigger than Dave and Keith.

Those eyes are just amazing!

When I discovered they were in the junk pile, I started leaving a bowl of kibble for them at the top. Mom was happy. Kitten was disinterested. 😀