Tag Archives: daffodils

Homestead Update 2/12/17

12 Feb

The temperatures have been unseasonably warm the past 3 weeks so we are having a false Spring. When this happens, we always get  another hard freeze after the fruit trees have bloomed out so we will have no locally grown fruit this year. The daffodils are starting to bloom, the trees are budding out and the forsythia is blooming. This is 2-3 weeks too early for here. It has been so warm my bees have been really flying! They are not just cleansing, they are foraging and bringing in pollen. I plan on adding some sugar water to the feeders next week so they don’t starve. I went into Winter with 5 hives, but now I am down to 4 hives.

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This is the dead hive. I was one frame short in the lower hive body so when I placed the medium super on top of it, the bees drew out the comb to fill in the space anyway. The comb just hung down from the frame above it.

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I set up 7 hives in anticipation of swarm season and I will add 3 more hives next week. I am tired of the grass growing up around the hives so I put down a layer of landscape cloth before I set the hives.

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I will come back soon and add some pine bark mulch on top of the fabric to hold down the grass.

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I took this picture of a tree outside of one of my farmer’s shop.

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That is what a 20 year old crepe myrtle looks like if it hasn’t been butchered back to keep it short. I really like the look of that trunk with the bark peeled off, that tree has a lot of character.

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I used my front end loader and pushed up a pile of old limbs and I discovered this really nice looking composted material on the bottom of the pile. I flipped it over with the old compost on top of the fresher limbs on the bottom. I think in a couple of more years, I can get some good usable compost from the bottom of the pile. I also uncovered a big brown snake under the pile. I’ll have to start watching out for them now since the weather is so warm.

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I put together this 12 inch bandsaw from Harbor Freight. And like anything from HF that has a lot of parts, following the instructions is a bit problematic because they are obviously written by some Chinese dude with only a rudimentary grasp of the English language. You really have to use your imagination and judgment to put this together. But after a little trial and error, I only had one small screw hole that had been drilled incorrectly, but I redrilled the hole myself so problem solved! I’ll have another post next week, until then keep prepping everyone!

More Spring Flowers

19 Mar

As I have been spending more time outdoors around our homestead, I keep discovering new things.

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For instance, I found this white flowering tree behind my barn. I have no idea what it is but it sure is pretty. I am going to find myself a tree guru, maybe someone from the Cooperative Extension service. I would like to be able to identify the trees on our homestead.

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As I have been cleaning along the front fence line I found several clumps of pink hyacinths.

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I also found these daffodils. They are different from any I have ever seen, they are probably an old-fashioned variety. The flowers are small but extremely fragrant. Each stem has 2 blooms, and this one had 3 blooms on a single stem.

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They made a really nice bouquet! I am sorry about the quality of my pictures now. Most of the pictures on my blog were taken with a cellphone camera, and up till now they have been pretty good. But I got a new phone, and the camera is not nearly as good on this one as the old one. I am going to start keeping my camera in my truck at all times so if I get the opportunity to take an interesting picture, hopefully I will have it handy. Be prepared!

A Sure Sign of Spring

17 Feb

I noticed one of my surefire indicators that Spring is just around the corner.

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No, it is not the Robins in the yard, although there are plenty of those.

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No, it is not the daffodils in bloom, although there are plenty of those.

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There is a small roadside motel near the homestead, and starting in early Spring through the middle of the Summer, you will see 2-6 of these delivery trucks at the motel during the weekend. They are from South Alabama and I guess they use this motel as a base to deliver their plants to the nearby stores and nurseries. So seeing these trucks lets me know the stores are stocking up, getting ready for the customers to come in and buy their Spring bedding plants and supplies, Spring must be just around the corner.

Dog Pen Update

2 Feb

After some snow flurries the last few days, the temperatures are in the upper 40’s, heading to the 60’s in a few days. I took the opportunity to work on the dog pen even though the ground was still muddy and sloppy.

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I managed to get the wire up on two sides of the pen and it came out pretty well considering I had to work alone. I couldn’t get anyone to help me because it is Super Bowl weekend. Everyone I know is either out of town or busy with Super Bowl activities so I put the wire up myself. It actually went smoother than I thought it would. The wire is probably as tight as it would have been if someone had been helping me, and didn’t really take me any more time. After I attached the wire to the poles, I fastened the bottom of the wire with these fence stakes.

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I bought these through Amazon and they were much heavier than I thought they would be when I ordered them. The stakes are at least 1/4 inch in diameter and 12 inches long, very heavy and strong. Most of the reviews I read online were positive so I took a chance and ordered them, I’m glad I did. I ordered 150 of them so I will have some left over for other projects.

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I also had a small pile of gravel I spread out by the mailbox. I noticed the postman was starting to cut a little rut when he pulled alongside the mailbox so I put the gravel down so he wouldn’t get stuck.

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I also noticed the Daffodils were blooming along the old fence line so Spring can’t be too far away! Even Punxsutawney Phil says we will have an early Spring this year, I hope he is right!

Spring Flowers

1 Mar

I was noticing flowers starting to bloom today.

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These are tiny blooms on some ground cover “vinca minor”.

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This is a winter annual weed “henbit”.

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The daffodils are in full bloom.

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The blooms on this Bradford Pear tree are ready to burst open any day now.

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While I was taking pictures of the flowers I saw these berries on this Nandina shrub and I couldn’t resist taking a picture of them.

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Even this Lady Beetle wanted in on the action. My barn is full of Lady Beetles, when Spring really does arrive they will scatter out and do what birds and bees do in the Spring!