Monday, July 11, 2011

Garden in July

We've both been pretty bogged down with work and school, so no adventures to report. Also, most of the public land in NM is shut down due to fire danger. We're grateful for a proactive plan, but we miss getting into the mountains. We have not had precipitation of any significance for months. We need it to rain! Today the forecast is 40% chance of afternoon thunderstorms. Our sincere hope is that the thunderstorms come with drenching rain and not with fire-inducing lightning.

We are so fortunate that the acequia is still going strong so we can irrigate. The trees look great and the apples are coming along nicely.

The volunteer butternut squash is going like gangbusters and threatens to completely crowd out the tomatoes which came back from the dead. Maybe the shade from the squash keeps the tomatoes comfortable in the 90+ temps of the afternoon.

We also have some gigantic sunflowers around the yard that were not planted by us. Thanks to the birds and other critters.

All of this vegetation is helping keep the chickens cool, too. We've been letting them free range in the hopes of some yard maintenance. They've been happily devouring wheat and many of the weeds. Miraculously they stay away from the squash and tomato plants. Maybe once the tomatoes ripen, they will be vulnerable. They are also tromping all over the vetch, which at least gives the appearance of the yard being more manageable. It also helps the flower seeds that were sown in the spring to get enough sun to grow. I'm constantly surprised at how much the chickens enhance our landscaping experience. All of this foraging has also resulted in absolutely delicious eggs with beautiful, golden yolks. Bonus!

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