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February 20, 2008

This was our last sunny day, so we spent it sneaking a few plantings in the greenhouse, and planting a few flats for fresh greens.  Everything that has made it this far is getting tiring.  I’m longing for crunchy sweet romaine!  For winter salads, we have relied on chicories, buckshorn plantain, kale, chard and cress.  Now the bitterness just seems heavy.  We find most years, that eating seasonally suits us better.  I don’t want tomatoes bad enough to buy them, and with the price of fuel driving 15 miles to the nearest natural food store seems criminal.  Not to mention where that tomato actually came from.

I direct seeded Hakurei  turnips, and early Daikon in one bed in the greenhouse.  I plan to till in the greenhouse with the tractor, so I have to plan accordingly, so my plantings aren’t in my way later.  I only seeded 2 flats with Space spinach, Parris Island and Little Gem romaines, Simpson Elite, Red Sails, and Flashy Green Butter Oak leaf lettuces, and misc. greens for salad.  Mizuna, Bau Sin mustard, 5 color silverbeet, Fordhook Giant and Tatsoi and Joi Choi.  Even though we’ve had warm 52 degree days, at night the thermometer in the greenhouse has been registering 27 degrees, so I put the flats on a small heat mat and I’ve just been turning it off during the day. 

Here is the 2 year composted cow manure I amended my turnip/radish bed with.


 We burn wood for heat because we have a plentiful supply.  Usually cleaning up winter storm damage and taking out inferior trees to improve our timber, supplies our woodshed fairly well.  But…we have a friend who deals in reclaimed timbers, and fairly often he will let us know when the mill he using for his business has scraps.  Sometimes it can be exotic hardwoods, (since we are packrats) we have some cool pieces of wood that we just couldn’t see go up in smoke.  We picked up a pickup load of kiln dried fir sticker wood.  This is what they use between the hardwoods for air circulation.  We pull out the old growth for projects like battens, and cut up the second growth for the cookstove.  It is dry as a bone, and burns hot and clean.  A good quick fire for cooking!  What we unloaded today will probably last us until I get tired of cooking on the woodstove.  Which on a warm day seems like it should now!

The rest of the afternoon, we played search and rescue with the dogs.  Melvin loves this game!  We can hardly hide from him any more.  He has been teaching Trace all of his sniffing tricks and finally Trace beat him once.  Usually, after about 3 times, they are reluctant to go to the house and wait – so we just quit while it is still fun for them. 

Hopefully, I’ll complete my vegetable variety list tomorrow, and what I don’t want to plant again and why.

One Comment leave one →
  1. February 22, 2008 2:11 pm

    Burning wood sure changes the way you look at scraps and sticks and bits of bark! As we drive along the highway if we spot a chunk of wood or a 2X4 laying along the road, everyone points and hollers out “fire wood!”. Kiln dried stickers are great stuff too! I envy your wood cook stove…we used to have one, but not now.

    threecollie – You are right about that! If we come across “free” firewood, it’s like money in the bank. If it’s dry too – all the better.

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