Friday, May 4, 2012

And Just Like That....

If you don't follow our Facebook page, you will not know that the baby Berkshire Pigs arrived on Tuesday!  Ten little weanlings, well, fifty pound babies!  And just yesterday morning one of the barn cats had babies way up high in a box on a shelf; we're not sure because it's hard to see but we think there are four kittens!  Just like that, there are eighty mouths to feed around here, not including Farmer Man and I!  We're still waiting for goat babies, but we know we're getting close because the goatlings' udders have started to enlarge and, if all goes well, that could be at least three and as many as nine new members of the farm!  New chicks will arrive about the end of the month.  And another barn cat is, beyond question, going to have more kittens soon (I know, I know but we really do get them spayed and neutered as we can afford)!

And just like that, the greenhouse is almost full with baby plants!  Once we start to pot-up from our thickly seeded flats into six packs and cells, the plants (and flats) multiply quickly.  There are well over one thousand seedlings here now!  Potted up are most of the tomatoes, peppers and the early starts of herbs.  Waiting for potting up are the third and last seedings of the above three, and just seeded are flats of broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage.  We're just getting organized on making our little paper pots from newsprint, which means soon we'll be seeding the winter squash that takes a hundred days or more, like the delectable Australian blue pumpkins like 'Jarrahdale' and 'Crown Prince'.  Watermelon and cantelope will also go into the newspaper pots because they tend to be brittle and do not transplant well; with the paper pots we don't have to handle them very much because the pot can be planted!

And just like that, we're busy!  The leisurely days of March and April have given way to the increasing demands of all our babies.  Checking on the piglets is frequent:  we need to ensure they have not found a weak point in the fencing.  Their automatic waterer is still not hooked up, so we're refilling their water bucket three or four times a day.  Checking the goatlings is almost an obsession, looking for any signs that a baby may be coming.  Checking, watering and feeding all the critters and seedlings can take over a couple of hours.  Blogging, answering emails and phone calls, updating the Facebook page - we're quite happy now when it's dark and everyone and everything is tucked into bed!  And we're not even out in the gardens, yet....potato planting should commence next week, if the rains subside and then, just like that, there will be weeding and hoeing and then seeds should get planted and then the seedlings should get hardened off and planted and then:  it will be full-tilt small farm whirl-o-rama! 


  1. If you happen to have an old steel pressure tank around, cut it in half from top to bottom, weld a couple chunks of rebar on each end so that it sits flat, and voila, instant feed and water troughs. Also, to keep them from climbing into the feed trough, you can build a simple teepee framework to sit on top of the feed trough too. It works for us.

    Arizona Edibles.

  2. This time of year is so busy for me but when I read about your farm I feel like I actually have very little to do! All those baby pigs must keep you quite busy, never mind baby goats coming too.