(Written Friday 3/23/2012)
Spring cleaning is in full swing around our farm. Today we cut up more of the fence posts that we pulled last year in preparation for the new fence. We cut the locust posts into 12 to 15 inch sections that will fit nicely into our woodburner next year. We cut down to the portion of the fence that was underneath the ground. We figured it would add more creosote to the chimney if we burnt the portion that had all or the dirt and water damage. The three foot sections that were underground stacked very nicely for a bonfire. Hopefully that will be happening soon, complete with s’mores.
We mowed the grass yesterday. Can you believe that we are mowing four weeks earlier than normal? We also finished preparing the garden soil and purchased a few more seeds. At the curren
t seed prices, we can definitely see that value to seed saving. We bought grass seed, radishes, green beans, and peas for a total of $22.00. Had we saved our own, that coat would have been closer to $8 for the grass seed and gas additive for the chainsaw.
We took the mowers in to the service shop today to keep them in good working condition.
So that covers the prep work. The rest of the day was spent cleaning indoors and out. We moved metal t posts to the barn, moved some old telephone pole pieces, and cleaned up inside the barn a bit. With the top of the barn cleaned out, the kids now have an additional play area.
Finally, we began trimming and pruning the fruit trees. I was surprised to see the multitude of bees busy at work pollinating the peach tree, which is already in bloom. I usually start pruning the apple trees by removing all of the water sprouts, which are those small branches that go straight up. I also trim out any diseased wood and branches that cross over others. These branches that cross over will cause damage to the bark as they rub against one another. I di fear that we may be too late to apply dormant spray. I need to look more into home remedies/ organic ways to manage fruit trees. It seems like the conventional guys are always out spraying their crops. Ours have been organic for the past 10 years, but we have never gotten fruit. It is probably because organic and natural in this case means neglected. Hopefully this will change this summer. We have already begun looking for recipes for homemade natural dormant oil sprays. It seems most are based with mineral oil.