Sunday, August 26, 2007

Spring is Sprung!

Spring has come a week early, and I am feeling a great anticipation as the season kicks into full gear. We have worked hard this past year to become as self sufficient as possible, and have planted fruit and nut trees, berries, a veggie garden, installed lamb producing ewes, and a bee hive.

Two years of our vegetable garden has made us poor customers at the green grocers, and as the fruit trees become more established, we will wander off, never to return (hardly). We lived on our potato crop for 4 months, and I hope to get a larger plot in this season. Every success or failure teaches us a new lesson. I left the rocket, lettuces, parsley, potatoes and silverbeet to go to seed, and we are feasting on new plants already. I discovered that if you just lop off the top of the silverbeet, it will begin anew, and we have one plant that is now in it's third season.

Our first 'bush budgie' (blow fly) came into the house this morning, and I'm not so sure about being happy about that. We forget about having to shut the door quickly to keep these fat black, noisy menaces out.

We are letting our ewes into the house yard to eat the deep grass behind the dog run .... under supervision, of course. Normally, the poodles love to chase them, which is a pretty scary event , so they are safely locked away in their secure area with a bone each, and the fat ladies happily munch grass at them through the weld mesh. Their first lambs will be due in a month, and three are starting to 'belly up'.

I wandered down the slopes to our small 'forest', where the forget-me-nots love to seed, and the trees meet in a canopy overhead. Our bees live at the top of the slope, and are out in full flight out pollinating our almond and fruit trees. I pondered on how glorious nature is in the perfection of the blossoms.

Our bees will be thinking about swarming soon, as we haven't disturbed them since we got them over a year ago, but we have another box which we will install next weekend, and then get in and have a look at the old hive for the queen. We went to a Bee Keeping Day last year and learned about how to split the hive. This is all new to us, but we bought 'Beekeeping for Dummies", which is a terrific book, full of information. Where would we be without our 'Dummies' books?

"The sun, with all those planets revolving around it and dependent upon it, can still ripen a bunch of grapes as if it had nothing else in the universe to do."

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