Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Another Exhausting Week on the Trailer Park Homestead

I am chronically pooped out these days it seems.  In addition to all the usual "fun" of having three littles around the house and the work that entails, including but not limited to the cooking, cleaning, and continuous refereeing, I've been busting my butt trying to get this Trailer Park Homestead set up.  A normal, sane person would probably spread this enormous of a project over a couple years, but I'm determined to basically have it "done" this year...although, is a homestead of any sort actually ever done?

I'm almost "done" for now though.  All the garden beds are dug out, compost has been obtained to put in all of them, and all the seedlings I started indoors have been transplanted out into their beds and buckets.  Now, I just need to finish spreading the compost around the yard and plant my direct sow seeds. Then, it will be just a matter of sitting back and watching things grow.  Well, except for the weeding and watering and watching for pests and harvesting (which actually will start very soon for some things!) and putting up for the winter.... Yup, the fun never ends.  It's worth it though, when I know that my family will eat well, no matter what happens to the economy or our bank account or far off places.

I just heard on the news last night that the prices of corn and wheat are expected to skyrocket because of the flooding along the Mississippi and, while I feel bad for everyone that affects, directly or indirectly, I also am pretty darn proud how little that should impact me!  I'll be growing my own corn this year, for eating fresh, freezing, and making corn meal.  As for the wheat, I'm a little concerned, since I don't really have the space to grow a lot of wheat, but I'm thinking about looking into the possibility of a winter wheat crop in my garden beds to act as a cover crop, let me rotate crops without rearranging where things go next year and maybe even give me some homegrown wheat to take the edge off the price of flour going up.  In the meantime, I'll stock up, just like I always try to do!

I get ahead of myself though.  Fall and winter are still a far way off and there are a lot of exciting things going on in the here and now on the Trailer Park Homestead.  Here's what's going on this week:

My wonderful husband got me more blueberry bushes, stepping stones, a couple strawberry plants (not shown), and a netbook (also not shown, but I'm using it to write this right now...which is why he got it for me!) for our anniversary last week!  World's.  Best.  Husband!!!!  I also acquired a garlic chive plant over the weekend, since it didn't sell at the church auction and the person that donated it didn't want it back, so it was kind of foisted on me.  It is on the other side of this collection of planters.

The view from the road.  I think I may have been being a little passive-aggressive with the layout of the plants in the stone-lined garden bed--since the park manager mentioned "they" would prefer the raised bed would be toward the back of the lot if I was going to plant flowers in it, I'm kind of concealing the box, which contains broccoli (actually a flower), carrots, spinach, green peppers, cucumbers, and tomatoes, by planting tomato plants in the garden bed in front of it, plus cucumbers in the hanging basket above the tomatoes.  I think that should be visually interesting to say the least, although, I don't really know that the basket is large enough to support two cucumber plants!  Other than the tomato plants, there is also a green pepper plant in that bed and some violets.  I need to plant a lot more stuff in there.  I'll probably put some actual flowers in there too.
The front door area.  Snap peas are growing right outside the door, with strawberries on the stairs.  The buckets on the left of the picture contain tomatoes (two varieties), with a planter for lettuce (not planted yet) in front of them.  The buckets on the right of the picture, right up against the trailer's edging contain ground cherries.
The view out the back door.  All the beds are (finally) dug!  The one closest in the picture is shaped like that to provide a clear path from the door to the garage on the back of the lot.  It currently contains cucumber plants and I plan on having some corn join the cucumbers soon.
This is part of the border between our lot and the one next to us, taken from the side that is not our lot.  Here I have blue jade corn (a kind of sweet corn), sunflowers for privacy, and a variety of vining plants, including squash, pumpkins, and cantaloupes to weave around their bases to limit how much weeding I'll have to do and maximize the space.

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