Saturday, April 30, 2011

Spring ...HOLD ME BACK!!

Counting my Blessings!!

Tomorrow is May 1st 2011!!
I am SO very excited..and despite the fact that I am still recovering from surgery..I am eagerly looking forward to year two of our journey towards becoming more self sustainable!  I say MORE self sustainable because only having a half acre..we cannot truly go full throttle..but other than animal feeds..and grains..we are hoping to come pretty darned close!


The Garden is going to almost DOUBLE in size this year..and also..getting creative with our growing space..such as container gardening for Squash and potatoes...

This is one of my containers that I have planted potatoes in..it came with the house and is an inside out tire...We have put mulch and compost in the bottom..black earth..seed potatoes..then compost and earth mixed on top! Then there are my tomato plants which I am growing in hanging containers...
For Now they hang in My porch Waiting for a couple more weeks of warm weather!
We have a new flock of chicks that will be laying in September.

Three Goats one of which we are hopping is pregnant...A young steer who will soon be big enough to butcher...3 Turkey chicks on order and 40 meat chicks also coming in that order...I have two new little black currant bushes ( will take 3 years to produce..but I am patient) and two new beehives with the bees on order!

And this spring we even tapped our few maple trees and got some of our own maple syrup!


We Now have rabbits for breeding..Which has more than one benefit..as
Rabbit droppings having the highest nitrogen content of any of the commonly available barnyard manures, such as cow, horse, pig, etc. There is the meat which we enjoy..and the fur I am determined to learn how to process.
They are all now properly housed in the barn and Have lovely pine nesting boxes to sleep in at night...I was just out there and raked out from under their cages and spread it on the garden! Tomorrow the rest of the muck, straw and trampled hay from the steer pen is getting spread on the garden.

I would say my life is pretty much WONDERFUL!!! I am a lucky lady.
For those of you who can watch videos..Here is a tour!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OjcaCgwmDIM

I hope everyones lives are as blessed as mine!! And I hope you enjoyed this Blog Entry!!

CHEERS!!

7 comments:

wildhomestead said...

I love your photos! Did you mention what kinds of rabbits you raise? I'm really interested in keeping rabbits for fiber and meat (I thought about alpaca's for their fur... but, well, rabbits are much cheaper!). We have two rabbits now that we planned to breed, but then realized that relying on commercial feed is a costly pain so I am thinking about mixing chickens and rabbits in a well designed forest pasture and seeing how that goes.

Half Acre Homestead said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Half Acre Homestead said...

I don't have the space to pasture anything but the goats..the chickens winter in the barn..but in the summer they have an outdoor run as well..I lost over a dozen chickens and 1 turkey to predators last year...so ALL my smaller livestock go inside at night. With the rabbits..once the grass greens up..I am going to make them a daily run..I will do this the same way I kept my dogs from my garden last year..I took 24 inch high chicken wire and stretched it out and every 4-6 feet I threaded half inch doweling through the chicken wire and pushed it into the ground..I am going to make a little portable surround for the rabbits...this way I can pull up the stakes..roll up the chicken wire and move it from day to day.
If you have a lawn that is chemical free...you can make your own rabbit food.
Everytime you cut your grass..Take 10-12 cups of fresh cut grass..( you may want to put it through a food processor to chop it finer)
Mix it in a large bowl with 3 cups whole wheat flour..2 cups rolled oats and or bran...If you have a coffee grinder you may want to grind up some navy beans of dried split peas for added protein..some plain or trace mineral salt..Or crush in a pice of mineral cube from a livestock block. And about
1-1&1/2 cups of Water with 2TBS molasses...Mix this all together Press into large cookies sheets that have been lined with parchemnt paper..and bake slow in your oven at about 200 degrees for a few hours or until dry and hard..break into chunks and feed to your rabbits daily!
I have not done this yet myself.. but I am going to...I can buy alfalfa cubes and do the rest myself.
Good Luck!

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