Homestead Report 35: May 3, 2019

Well, I have been delinquent in taking photos lately, but we have built a fence… fulfilling part of this years’ garden goal: Protect.

Last fall’s compost bins, along with our new fence

We carefully dug a 6 inch deep trench in which we buried the bottom of the fence, and worked on the gate so it swings just an inch above the ground. Our hope is to keep the voracious rabbits out, so we can grow beans again!

We also staked out the raspberries, gave them support wires, and dug out the ones that had transformed our original tidy rows into a wide, unpickable patch, immediately replanting them at the end of the rows.

The raspberries are to the right (north end) of the garden, here with a low fence to protect them from the porcupine, which had been pruning them aggressively.

Earlier in the month, while I was at work, Charley heard a monstrous noise at our neighbors’ house. For once, the sound brought joy– a wood chipper! Just a few days before he was wondering how we might be able to obtain an unlimited supply of mulch. Charley ran over and talked to the landscaper–Would he like a place to dump the chips? We had a place available and would be delighted to have them. One batch of chips was from a willow tree that had been damaged in a wind storm. As we have applied some of it around a few fruit trees, we collected several twigs that escaped the chipper and put them in water. In a week or so, they had sprouted roots and we put them in the ground. Perhaps our neighbors’ willow will yet live.

Mulch piles! In front, a low pile of last year’s aging brownish mulch. In back, creamy-green willow on the right, golden-yellow pine on the left.

I would be remiss if I did not celebrate the spring. Every new green thing, each individual flower is marked in this fresh season. We’re hungry for color, and go for slow walks around the yard and in the woods to see what tender new plants are poking up each day.

A bad photo of a lovely flower, Hepatica, 4/16/19
A blurry photo of the state flower of Massachusetts, Trailing Arbutus (or Mayflower). Beautiful, and with a sweet fragrance, it’s worth getting down on your hands and knees to appreciate its scent. 4/25/19

On April 26, Charley and I celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary. The day of was scattered and busy, so instead we got a whole week to draw out the observance… Generously gifted tickets to the hilarious Trevor Noah’s “Loud and Clear” stand-up show, the season’s first asparagus meal from our garden, a trip to see my folks and extended family–and the spring ephemeral wildflowers–in Ohio, and a visit from my dear friend Patricia (who also kept the chickens and seedlings alive while we were in Ohio).

Five years. Smiling, inside and out. Photo credit: Patricia Troy
Patricia on our hike

She literally “tied the knot” for us at our wedding ceremony, so it was especially fun this anniversary with her.

April 26, 2014; Patricia tying the knot in our handfasting ceremony; Denny Radabaugh officiated over the ceremony and did the pronouncing. Photo credit: Jennifer Edwell
Then, as now, we knelt together in the cathedral of Earth to admire the cycles of nature.
Photo credit: Jennifer Edwell

Set boundaries. Notice abundance. Speak gratitude. Expand joy.

2019 goals

3 thoughts on “Homestead Report 35: May 3, 2019

  1. Fantastic!! Happy belated 5th Anniversary, and thanks for sharing all the photos! I didn’t know Denny officiated at your wedding — great guy. I’m glad and jealous that you got to see Trevor Noah in person (what fun!). I’m sure the garden fence trench was a laborious task, but indeed the wild critters tend to think you planted the salad bar just for their benefit, if you don’t protect it. Hopefully you’ll reap and enjoy great rewards from your efforts this year. And here’s to many more years of happiness together!
    Stew

  2. This was such a joy and pleasure to read. I’m glad I saved it to read when I was feeling discouraged. You and Charley give me hope.

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