Friday, July 27, 2012

IDC: Week 25

By popular demand, the Independence Days Challenge is back! Every Friday from February - September we are challenged to work on our skill set. Anyone can join in!

****There hasn't been a whole lot to update due to the drought and heat. Everything I've planted has pretty much fried in the heat even with daily watering and mulching. We are fearful that with failed crops, animal feed is going to sky rocket so our focus has been with stocking animal feed.****
The categories and my responses:

Plant something: A lot of us were trained to think of planting as done once a year, but if you start seeds, do season extension and succession plant, you’ll get much, much more out of your garden, so I try and plant something every day from February into September.
Plant something:

-Several attempts in the past 5 weeks, most have died: Holy basil, Balloon Flower, Pasque flower, Oriental poppies, Lady's Mantle, Eggplant, Cotton, Peppers, Broccoli, Cabbage, Leeks

Harvest something: Everything counts – from the milk and eggs you get from your animals to the first dandelions from your yard to 50 bushels of tomatoes – it all counts.
Harvest something: 
Weeds to feed to the goats and sheep

Preserve something: Again, I find preserving is most productive if I try and do a little every day that there is anything, from the first dried raspberry leaves and jarred rhubarb to the last squashes at the end of the season.
Preserve something:

-Drying Calendula flowers, Basil, Velvet Leaf
Waste not: Reducing food waste, composting everything or feeding it to animals, reducing your use of disposables and creation of garbage, reusing things that would otherwise go to waste, making sure your preserved and stored foods are kept in good shape – all of these count.
Waste Not: 
-Fed chickens, dog and cats scraps; composted unfeedable scraps
-free range grazing the sheep and tethering the goats
-using weeds to mulch plants as I weed & to feed to goats, sheep and chickens
Want Not: Adding to your food storage or stash of goods for emergencies, building up resources that will be useful in the long term.
Want Not:

-17 bags chicken feed (on sale for $8.99/bag) = 3 month supply
-Revamped First Aid kit

Eat the Food: Making full and good use of what you have, making sure that you are getting everything you can from your food, trying new recipes and new cooking ideas, eating out of your storage!
Eat the Food: 
-eating eggs and milk
-food from farmer's market: free range chicken and beef, okra, green beans, onions, tomatoes, zucchini, watermelon, eggplant, kale
Build community food systems: What have you done to help other people have better food access or to make your local food system more resilient?
Build Community Food Systems: 
-offering milk and eggs to my community
-bartering with friends at market: eggs and soap for produce
-teaching kids about herbs
And a new one: Skill up:  What did you learn this week that will help you in the future – could be as simple as fixing the faucet or as hard as building a shed, as simple as a new way of keeping records or as complicated as making shoes.  Whatever you are learning, you get a merit badge for it – this is important stuff.
Skill Up: 
-teaching the 7 year old how to clean, candle and carton eggs for sale
-teaching kids about herbs

1 comment:

Gina said...

Hasn't the heat been awful? North, we are definitely in a drought. Down south, my little apartment garden has produce fairly well (better than the large farm garden). I agree about skyrocketing costs for animal feed this winter. I told Sr we need to start storing hay now for the one cow and ewe we still have.

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