Oh, fishy, fishy, fish... (with apologies to Monty Python)


I ate the fish's typical friends for breakfast, yesterday.

Harvested the last of the beets and ate 'em for dinner last night. Delicious! We didn't get enough beets this year and I'll have to plan accordingly next year.

The greens make a nice addition to my morning scramble. Besides the last of the kale (which just keeps pumping out produce), we won't have fresh greens again until the collards, romaine, and Bibb come up.

Planting takes time - adding compost, getting the drip lines right, making furrows and putting in seed, or digging in starts, adding cages or trellises - but harvesting takes more time, because the food needs to be processed. Cleaning beets, for instance requires four containers, one for edible leaves, one for chicken leaves (whatever looks marginal), one for the actual vegetable, one for compost. I enjoy processing the harvest if I can do it outside.

Remember those compost bins we built out of pallets? Well, one's already nearly full.

That's figwort growing out of the bin at the top center
I'm trying to add layers of brown and green. For the brown, it's all chicken straw, all the time - once a week I add a big amount of that. Of course the straw is soiled with their excrement, which is very good. For greens I add the leavings from our harvests, and my next-door neighbor brings over his grass clippings when he mows (isn't that nice of him?). Though he said yesterday that it was probably the last batch, as they won't be watering their grass this summer due to the drought. And now that most of my harvesting is done (shallots yet to go - next week, and kale when it stops producing or when I can't stand not to plant basil any longer!), I'll have to trim a lot of plants to keep up with the green stuff for the compost balance. Or not. One thing I've learned over the years, compost always happens, irregardless - it just takes more time.

I've been making lists of vegetables that do well here in winter, and ones that do well in summer, as well as those that do well on the edges of the seasons. I'm also making lists of winter veg I want to try, like rhubarb and brussels sprouts. I'd also like to try growing wheat or some other grain, for both our needs and the chickens needs. If any of you have experience growing grains, I'd like some advice.

Flowers continue to open up, which makes me and the bees happy.

Mallow, just on the verge
Not just here, but in the open space too. 

Native penstemon
Beautiful now, but it's fleeting.