Finally had time to start my cold frame seed plan. I received the seed for the brassicas in the mail a few days ago, but never had time to get everything going. Joel was great in picking up 10 bales of straw in Moneta we found for $3.00 per bale - the cheapest I could find. We unloaded them in the garden and there they sat until finally this morning I got them in place, loaded up several loads of dry, composted manure found in the old barn, and layered that on the already placed beds of Little Ceasar's carboard boxes, straw, leaves and sheep and llama manure with a good soaking of water. On top of that went seed for broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and onions. After our trip to Floyed I layered peat moss on top of the seeds and watered again. All the seeds are covered by the windows we took out of our family room last spring to remodel.
In another bed by other artichoke plants, I planted another packe of artichoke seeds and covered them with a good layer of straw for mulch. I do hope they come up. I would love to have alot of fresh artichokes. I need to look into growing Jerusalem artichokes also. I hear they do pretty well in this area and they would be different.
OK, our trip to Floyd was fun - winding up the mountain on a rainy Saturday. It was David's first time there and my second. We went in answer to a craigslist ad for a cart we could hook up to the lawn mower. We ended up with a cart, but not the one advertised. When we got there Mr. Floyd (really) who lived on Floyd Highway in Floyd was also selling another cart that was larger and better for our needs. We purchased it for $75.00 and visited a garden center nearby - getting the peat moss and some more fabric to make more low tunnels for lettuce soon to come, The Bread Basket for some bulk food and grain, the hardware store for a pin and had lunch at the Blue Ridge Restraunt. It was a fun quick trip and very profitable. I had fun once we hooked up the cart to the lawn tractor. I took it right away to the barn and loaded it several times with hay, driving it over to the shed by the pasture for David to unload it and store it closer to the hay rack for this week's rations. The hay is holding out pretty well I'm happy to say. I was afraid we wouldn't have enough. Next year when someone bales our field we need to keep alot more for winter feeding - especially since the sheep will be lambing and need even more.
So Dan is our newest member of the farm. He came to us last weekend from Mangham Manor Farm. He was a four-day old ram from a set of triplets that needed to be taken off the ewe. We've been bottle feeding him every few hours and having alot of fun. When it's sunny we take him outside to live in a pen in the courtyard-giving him room to run and be on grass, eating leaves. During the rest of the time he's in a pen in our breezeway. He loves to get out and run around the kitchen too - before or after feeding times. We're looking forward to fattening him up and having him ready to breed our two ramboullet ewes next fall. I can't wait to have our own lambing season on our farm. We also are looking forward to having alot more lamb to sell. Two other farm markets - Four Corner's Farm and Our Father's Farm have already agreed to sell lamb for us. At the Bread Basket in Floyd they were selling lamb for $10.00 to $15.00 a pound! We couldnt' believe it. We'll have to find a market like that for it!