Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Extra day off

Graduation is over, and my summer hours have officially begun. I'll have Mondays off until September. I couldn't take yesterday, though, as my buddy Tom and I had to produce two life-size cardboard figures of the college founder in silly costumes for a dinner. I did enjoy sitting with them on the back of the golf cart as we delivered them to the HUB.

So I took today off, and boobled around the garden. The winter squash seeds C. started didn't come up, so I started a few more and stowed them in the greenhouse. It's getting late for them, but maybe fall will be easy and they'll have a chance to mature. Transplanted a couple of tomatoes still under the lights in the house. Worked on the garden watering system. It stops just short of the last two beds, but I think I'll call it good for this year. Below, one line runs through the asparagus bed. I've drilled tiny holes in the pipe, so it sprays out and up. You can kind of see the spray. It's my custom asparagus fountain.

It's all three-quarter-inch PVC as our water pressure isn't very high and I wanted to make sure the lines would carry enough water, even at the ends of runs. It is not beautiful, but if it works, that's enough for me. Hose-dragging is no fun. Basically, the line runs from the top of the garden down along the central path. There's a valve and hookup for a soaker hose on each bed to the south (left in the photo), and every two beds on the north side. The lines to the north are buried where they cross the path. We've spent probably $120 on new pipe and fittings, and the rest will have to be scrounged. We have a bunch of soaker hoses I'll get out, and will probably have to fabricate more of the fountain lines from some black poly pipe we have. 

Mo the goat went to the vet in the back of the Subaru. Some nasty goat lice moved in on him in the last couple of weeks, and he's had a bad reaction to them. His skin is all lumpy and crusty and sore looking. He got an antibiotic shot and a sprinkling of some hideously toxic pesticide powder. We'll have to sprinkle the other big animals as well, weekly for a month. Gah. If we'd caught it earlier, or if he hadn't been sensitive to them, we probably could have found a less drastic treatment.

C. spent the afternoon battling big rocks at the top of the garden. She's got half a dozen out of the hole, but there are a still few wedged in the bottom. She's saving those for tomorrow.

Otra the chicken has gone all broody, and has been faithfully setting on an empty nest for about a week.
We don't have a rooster, so she's unlikely to hatch anything chicken-like. But my egg lady, Charlene, grabbed a dozen big fertile eggs right from under her chickens' butts yesterday and put them in with my usual order, and I hustled them home and poked half of them under Ms. Cranky Pants. She pecked me a few times, then fled, bitching furiously. She continued to bitch as she shoveled in millet seed in the chicken yard. "Squap!" she said, with her mouth full. Peck-peck. "Bock squap!" Peck-peck-peck. She spent a few minutes eating, then was back on nest duty. Chicks would be fun, and Charlene has a wide variety of breeds – Aracaunas with neck beards, Polish birds with chrysanthemums on their heads, all kinds. We could use more hens, but not more than one rooster. But it's way to early to be counting them.

Here's Otra in the posh nest she built in the pet-crate nesting box.

And here's what sunrise looks like out our back door.

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