Monday, July 20, 2009

summer moves on

Summer finally feels as if it's here. The sun has been shining and my herb garden is happy. The boy and I planted a small rosemary seedling to fill in spot in the knot part of our knot garden, also filled in the chives section, and the oregano. Pruned the rosemary and am now trying to decide how to preserve it. I finally decided on some St. John's Wort for the center, so planted that as well. So far the broccoli is growing well, the celery is holding it's own as is the peppers and carrots. My bush beans and cuke plants have some flowers, as does the tomato plants which really seem to be growing. The Japanese Beetles are out - picked some off the basil and think they may be munching the peppers - will keep an eye out. My salad mix bolted well before it was even big enough to pick and the reseeded seems as though we won't get anything there. The spinach barely did anything at all.

The cheeckens are happily living in their lovely new coop - we constructed them a little pen for the yard yesterday, so they've had some time to scratch in the grass and the dirt. Scared the heck out of me today - I use the deep litter method for the coop, so went in to "fluff" the shavings and add more if needed, so they all went outside. Watched them for a while (I love my cheeckens and really enjoy just sitting and watching them), but then had to get some gardening done. (Garden is in the front yard, coop is in the back) Went back to check on them - NO CHEECKENS! Last night I had to chase them inside, so I wasn't sure if they could get in by themselves. They can - I was in a panic looking for them and realized they all went in. Very exciting! While I am sitting here typing this, they all came back out again! I know it's silly to get so excited about cheeckens moving in and out of their coop, but my life is pretty simple :) and I have to admit - I like it that way.

I am also really excited that my hubby finally put up my clothes line today. One of the things I was most looking forward to when we purchased our own house was having a clothes line. Unfortunately, so many other things really ended up being a priority, that we just never got around to getting it hung up. I've been feeling exceptionally wasteful every time I ran the dryer on a sunny day. This will no longer be the case! Yay for an afternoon home, working on that list of those little projects that just don't seem to get done.

As I said earlier in this post, I pruned a bunch of rosemary - my darling hubby is planning on building me a solar dryer at some point, but all the focus has been on cheecken coops lately, so that just hasn't happened yet. I'll do some cooking with rosemary over the next couple of days, but there is more than I can use before it goes bad; now I have to decide whether to dry or freeze. Finding a place to store drying rosemary on screening for a few days/weeks could be challenging - basement is a bit damp, so this may take some creativity. I'll probably end up freezing it, but am not sure how successful it will be - I'll post with my results. I have to admit - it's really exciting having to figure this one out. I've got my first surplus of something from my own garden. I really had doubts about enough of anything ripening so that I'd need to preserve it. Yeah! This could end up being a homestead after all.

1 comment:

  1. We have an electric dehydrator, if you decide to dry it. We often just hang herbs to dry right in the doorway between our kitchen and dining room. It's a bright, airy room with lots of air flow, but that area doesn't get any direct sunlight - perfect for drying herbs. If you have a north facing window, you could hang dry them there, too.

    You might also consider steeping the herbs in olive oil. Rosemary garlic olive oil for cooking or using on a salad ... yum!

    I've never done very well with rosemary. It's not a perennial in Maine, although it is elsewhere, and even though I usually pot it and bring it in to overwinter, I've never had a plant really flourish. Of course, I haven't given up ... yet ;).