Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Shave And A Haircut, Two Bits

Come, sit on the swing with me...
The wisteria is in full bloom.

Let's swing, listen to the bees buzz, and catch up a bit, ok?

Before I go any further...
I have to put your minds at rest.
We stocked our pond this spring with feeder minnows...
so the carp have plenty to eat.
The baby ducks are safe!
Whew!  I knew you would be relieved.  We try not to let anything to chance.

The farm has been so busy the past week since our return home from vacation.
It has been raining here and there, so the grass has grown at an alarming rate,
as have the weeds.
The good news, though, is that the vegetables in the garden have been keeping pace with the grass.
We have been harvesting sugar peas, broccoli, spinach, kale, chard, green beans and radishes
on a daily basis.
Meals have never been more fresh and healthy.

The roses are blooming.


The gooseberries are ready for picking.
Every spring I make Hubbs his very favorite gooseberry pie.
Even with adequate sugar, it's a sour pie...which is just what he calls it..."sour pie."

I am thinking that I will try making gooseberry jam.
"Sour jam" I presume.
Gooseberries are the sour cousin of the red currant.

So, aside from mowing, weeding, harvesting,
I have been getting caught up with animal chores...
like grooming, hoof trimming, clipping, bathing....
believe me, the list is never ending.

As usual, the Littles have not shed out their winter coats quickly enough to beat the heat.
Each spring I take matters into my own hands and clip off their furry winter coats.

Ollie, first...

then Red...

until a large pile of fur lies on the aisle floor.

That will make life much cooler for the little guys.

I have been spending a little time getting ready for a family wedding.
My son, Andy, is marrying his Ashley on June 21st.
This Saturday we are hosting a shower for Ashley on the farm...
so I have been busily preparing for that.
I will share pictures from the shower after Saturday.

I have also been doing a little more planting,
and a little repurposing.

I thought this old market cart would make a great cage for a tomato plant.

And I love old hollow logs to use as planters.

Hubbs found me this one in our woods.
I hope to find lots more.

So, you see...
life is very busy right now.
I am so glad you stopped by for a visit and a swing.
It gave me a chance to sit still and enjoy the wisteria.
Thanks for that!!


  1. i have another question for you? i planted gooseberries too and they are about the size of yours. i thought that they are supposed to get as big as a grape before you pick them? when i bought gooseberries in europe, they were the size of cherries and sweet. not real sweet but sweet enough to eat like cherries. i wonder if they were a different variety? i wish i could shear teddy. she has mats on her under carage and she won't let me clip them!

    1. There are two fruits that are called gooseberries. In Europe they call the ground cherry a gooseberry. It is another fruit that I plant each summer in my garden. It is in the tomatillo family, but is a sweet, yellow husk cherry. I make ground cherry jam....delicious! Unripened currents are the traditional gooseberry of the midwest, etc.

    2. There are over 150 different varieties of gooseberries. The way to tell if you have a gooseberry or currents is gooseberries have thorns, currents do not. I have grown several varieties and my favorite is "Oregon Champion" variety. Its' fruit grows as large as a table grape and is a nice balance of tart & sweet. The larger you allow the berries to grow, the sugar content increases. You would need to know the variety you have grown to look up what to expect in terms of ripeness and how sweet/tart it will taste. IIn general, they should be ripe when you can taste the sweetness. The Oregon Champion is what I would describe as two thirds sweet & one-third sour which is a nice combination, esp. for jam, pies and eating fresh. Joyce, if you don't know what variety you planted, I would just keep taste testing until you like the sweetness level as an indication of when to pick your gooseberries. Did you know that one gooseberry has more vitamin C than an entire orange, They are packed with nutrients like iron, calcium, potassium and many antioxidants. Gooseberries have long been reported to be excellent for eye & skin health as well as giving the immune system a boost. They are packed with iron, calcium, potassium & anti-oxidants.

  2. I don't hear about gooseberrie pie very often . . . not since I was very young. It was my dad's favorite pie . . .
    and my mom would make it for him . . .
    What a perfect place for a wedding shower . . . looking forward to the pictures . .

  3. Wonderful post....can't believe how you are going in every direction now! And a wedding to boot! Being the Mother of the Groom will help a bit but knowing you....ha!

    Your farm is simply gorgeous...hope to stop and see it in person sometime. Hugs.

  4. I know everyone thinks that gooseberries and red currants are the same, but they aren't. :-) They are two different things--some gooseberries eventually turn red when they ripen, but they are still gooseberries. They are related plants, but two different things. (As a currant lover, I researched this before I planted--I am not a fan of the gooseberries thorns!)

  5. Beautiful post Bev..such a wonderful variety..just like your life :)

  6. Another great post. And I love your hollowed wood planter. I have plenty of those in my woods where the fern love to grow. Aloha

  7. I did not realize Red is Lucille Ball "red". Wowsa! Quite the handsomess he has going on. Your son is getting married on a very special day. First day of summer, longest day of the year and my birthday! Congratulations.

  8. I was mulling over buying gooseberries when I was at the nursery, but got wooed by the Seaberries instead. That wisteria is gorgeous!

  9. How wonderful to have the wedding celebration on your farm, and I adore the swing and wisteria. It is calling to me.


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