Sunday, May 24, 2015

May 24, 2015

Anniversary Gazebo.  So we envisioned a trail with a small gazebo in which we could peaceably watch nature and divine wisdom.  
Trail leading to gazebo
We designated our anniversary as the day we would get the gazebo started (34 years of marriage.)  We started out by putting a post in the middle with a 7 foot string and clearing a 14 ft. diameter opening in the woods as we needed space for the gazebo and a trail around it.  We placed it so we could minimize cutting of natural growth.
Looks like a spaceship has landed
Underside of feed bin top
We then used a post hole digger to dig the six holes for the cedar poles.  We tried to get the feed bin roof on ourselves, but ended up having to call in reinforcements.  We have such wonderful neighbors.
Screwing roof to poles.
Many hands make light work
Poles leveled.

Monday, May 18, 2015

May 18, 2015

Well, Mother's day came which gave me another opportunity to ask for things I wanted for the farm!  Yay!!  I have such wonderful kids and a supportive husband.  I am trying to naturalize Sherri's birthday pond, so I asked for pond plants.  My son went and picked up for me some wonderful large clumps of pond lillies from a friend, who also sent along some Japanese Water Irises!  They are so beautiful with their variegated leaves! My two daughters and son-in-law went together to buy me a lot of other plants including:  yellow flag, horsetail, water hyacinths, and another water iris.  We spent the day planting them between the pond and the frog pond.  They also made me a lovely breakfast with western omelets and some fresh organic strawberries along with fresh pineapple.  Yum!  We have small sunfish playing in the spillway of the pond (so their parents must have been happy in the pond.)  There are also tadpoles and minnows (or at least there were some, not sure if they fed the baby sunfish as I'm not seeing them lately.)  My husband was coerced into buying me a grain bin top and managed to pick it up in his truck.  This will be the roof for my new gazebo in the woods.  If you are familiar with permaculture, you want to have a wild spot in your yard for observation.  This will be in the middle of the trail I have been working on, so we can retreat to the woods to observe nature for wisdom.  The frog pond was created in the area of our two gardens to attract frogs to help us control the insect population.  The frogs found it, so it now has hundreds of tadpoles!  How exciting! Unfortunately, the bumble bees have tried to drink water there and drowned, so what you see in the picture is a metal shelf rack with a towel draped on it until I think of a more picturesque way for the bees to get a drink of water safely.  We need our pollinators.
Poreclain thrift bowl with drilled hole
Future Auto Chicken Waterer
Another Project was buying a porcelain bowl for the geranium to go on our patio table (my husband got this plant for teacher appreciation week - thanks to parents.)  I brought the bowl home from the thrift shop and got my husband to drill a hole in it for me.  We are also working on our automatic chicken watering system which will collect the rainwater from the chicken coop roof and route it into a pipe that circulates through the chicken coop, to the other side and ends in the chicken run.  So far, we have managed to install the gutter, put the poultry nipples in the pipes, and have one pipe hanging in the coop with pipe straps.  I also bought a used book called Creating with Concrete by Sherri Warner Hunter that has a brilliant plan on how to make my concrete japanese lantern for next to my fig tree at the frog pond.  So many great projects and so little time!  We have planted both of the gardens and are picking strawberries and asparagus at this time.  We also managed to agree on one whole box of junk to take to the dump from the basement.  One bite at a time. . .
Inside pipe of chicken waterer
Grain bin top for gazebo roof
Frog Pond