Archive for the ‘ My Urban Homestead ’ Category

Just call me Urban Farmer

Welcome to my small homestead. I have been gardening since I was a small child, helping to tend my parent’s vegetable gardens in our small suburban lot. Growing my own food has been a passion of mine through the years, and even when I lived in a condo, I grew containers of tomatoes, potatoes, herbs and fresh greens.

Jade Gardens is animal powered. The orchard and gardens are my attempt at a sustainable lifestyle, with the help of goats, chickens and rabbits. The excess eggs and produce that are not preserved or canned are shared with the local food bank. In the past I have gardened in urban areas and find the act of Suburban and Urban Homesteading to be very satisfying.


April Showers. . .

Yeah, yeah, whatever. I know the showers bring the flowers, but I need a few warm, dry days to enjoy! I was comparing photos from early April in 07, 08, 09 and the growth this year is definitely ahead of any other year. I’ll try to get some comparison photos this week, but here on some shots from previous years.

The hot pink leaves of the Acer palmatum ‘Geishaare stunning again this year and the tree has grown significantly since I planted it. All of the 100+ Japanese Maples need to go up one pot this year, but I may have to just do the ones that seem the most desperate. I up-potted about 30 trees and perennials so far this year that I would normally have planted in the ground but with Wells Fargo wanting to take my house, I think it best to keep as many things in planters as possible.

The chickens are captive!

I dragged two rolls of horse fencing up to the chicken house, 70′ long, 6′ tall, then staked it with rebar woven through. Looks like Granny and Jetho put it up, but it was just Granny. I am looking forward to the soil staying IN the flower beds, not all over the sidewalks and driveway. They can flip gravel 10 feet when they start scratching, so even the grass is full of rocks now.

Wrestling that roll of wire took all my strength. I fell over backwards twice! At least I did not land on the pitchfork or large rocks. I will definitely have some bruises tomorrow, but looking out my window and seeing the chicks were they belong? Priceless!

I have aches on top of aches, so am calling it a night, yep at 8:00!


Crazy Wind Storm

knocked out Comcast for the evening, so I plugged in Star Trek 2010 and painted some more on one of the mutant chickens. I like the way this one is coming along. . .


Spring is Sprunging!

Or at least trying to. This photo is actually from last year in early April, but I do not have time to post anything new, as I have my public to meet tonight! R and I are heading to a gathering of independent book publishers this evening, so the witch hair must be transformed into that of a princess.


And how could she have let me get to this point?!

So the day will start with pulling out the farrier tools and working on thick old claws, picking dirt out from under nails, then on to detangling brushes to remove dead winter coat. Probably should throw some dewormer in the food while I’m at it.

Then I need to take care of the animals. ; )

Pottering About

C said, on March 13, 2010 at 5:36 PM

Not “crazy”… I call it ECCENTRIC… ;o)
…and I grew up next to an eccentric old woman who spent a lot of time in her yard gardening and pottering about. I found it quite exciting to make friends with her when no one else would! Most of the time she would vigorously “shoo” the kids from anywhere near her house. But I would visit her back porch by myself and sometimes she would let me in… one time to watch her iron using 2 cast irons that she heated alternately on her gas stove. Fascinating! And she finally accepted me well enough that she brought me the most fabulous corn bread sticks when I was home sick from school (made with lard, no doubt). And once I even got her to let me and 2 friends in the front door to sit in the parlor for a little bit. We found the carpet with the cabbage roses absolutely thrilling!

See, you have already and may again have the opportunity to make memories for the next generation! Carry on!

That is a wonderful story C! I was illustrating it in my head. R and I have a few books planned, but working on true stories about people who made a difference is intriguing to me. Flesh that one out a bit more, write as much as you can possibly remember. Describe every detail of how she looked, her home, and also exactly how you felt as a result of your special encounter.

You just made my day with that story. I love to watch children as they come here to pet the goats and bunnies. Every time I walk the goats, children pour out to meet me and try to pet the goats, who of course are not wild about the idea.

I also ponder the unfolding relationship with R, who I let onto my back porch and into my parlor with the cabbage rose carpet. Yep, actually have one! It is not easy being eccentric and allowing someone to live with you!

And now E is living here. When I drove out to pick him up, he was standing in the rain looking pretty beat down by life. A lost boy with no place to live is now happy, thriving, and working diligently on his wonderful creative project. He seems to enjoy my eccentricity and looks at me with a bemused smile as I talk to the cats, or myself. ; )

Delawares are mean. . .

at least my Delaware was. Her name was Della. She lives on someone else’s farm now. When she was four days old she called me because there was a cat in the house. The other chicks just sat there. By one week she had made it completely clear that she was Queen of the Coop! As Della matured she developed a nasty habit of sneaking up on me and drawing blood. Della does not live here anymore. Did I mention that already?