Wednesday, 28 August 2013

In the Morning Light, by Kira

Early morning sun.
Tomatoes starting to ripen.
Beta Grapes.
Lush meadow.
Collection of calendula and chamomile for drying.
The beautiful bowl is made by Homestead Pottery.
Heritage blue corn.
Gold Laced Wyandottes.
Dew on Bouquet Dill.
Little Cucamelons.
Beautiful Strawberry Blonde Calendula.

Sunday, 18 August 2013

Rock, Wood, & Feather, by Kira

Paint, Rocks, Feathers, and Wood.

Creative kids.

Monday, 12 August 2013

The Wilberforce Fair, by Kira

This past Saturday, we represented ourselves at the Wilberforce Agricultural Fair.
It was the first event that we have set up for and I must say that I think we did a great job of putting it together the day before the fair

We brought along a trio of our Gold Laced Wyandottes, some of our freshly ground flour, livestock feed, garlic that I harvested the week before, lavender salt bath, and some of my handmade feather hair clips.
Although we brought along some products to sell, the main reason for going was to showcase our business.

While Andrew worked the booth (which he does very well),
the kids and I roamed the grounds.
Auren spent most of the day exploring on his own.
He ran around the fair all day, checking in from time to time,
and even made some new friends!
But his favourite part of the fair was helping our friend Carol with her calves. Shortly after the two calves arrived, he hopped into the pen with them and brushed their coats until they were smooth and shiny.
I think Carol may have an apprentice in the works.

Sweet Fern had her hair streaked purple with paint, and when she wasn't in the bouncy castle, she was at our friends Carmen's booth helping to sell homemade jewellery.

As we meandered through the fairgrounds, Meer was dancing and singing to the music, though I think her favourite part was my homemade iced tea of which she drank a full litre!

By they end of the day, I had sold some of my handmade products, garlic and some feed while Andrew had talked with a lot of people.

I think this event was a great promotion for us.
Now that we've had a taste of a fair,
we're now planning on setting up at the farmers market.

Sunday, 4 August 2013

The Rusty- patched Bumble Bee. By Kira

This is the tri-coloured bumble bee, which can be mistaken for the rusty-patch bumble bee.
The tri-colour bee has two bands of rust as opposed to the single band of the endangered rusty-patch bumble bee.
A few months ago I went to a bee seminar hosted by Sue Chan.
Before going to this talk, I was certain about getting honey bees.
After Sue's presentation I changed my mind, or at least I decided to put our own honey bee plans on hold.
I feel that I need to learn more and help out our native pollinators.
They do so much for us and yet their numbers are dwindling just like the domesticated honey bee.
While in the gardens this summer, the kids and I have been more aware and curious.
Who are these pollinators?
Where do they live?
How do they live?
What flowers do they favour.
The suspected causes of decline are essentially the same as the domestic honey bee.
Climate change, the use of pesticides, habitat loss, and disease.
Here are some of the things that we have done and will be doing for our native pollinators.
1. Plant fruit trees and bushes.
This doesn't just benefit the bees, but you and your family as well!
I find the bees love flowering herbs, dill, borage, oregano, lemon balm,
just to name a few.
2. Plant a wide variety of flowering plants that bloom throughout the
growing season.
Be sure to include early bloomers, there seems to be a loss of early- blooming species.
3. Learn about who is pollinating your gardens.
Learning more will help you understand them and their needs.
If you want to follow the Rusty-patch bumble bee project you can find them on Facebook.

Get out there and see who is pollinating your garden!
(Editor's note: The photos in this post were taken by Kira in our garden.)

Saturday, 3 August 2013

A Fall Garden & Early Morning Photo Shoot, By Kira

With Auren and Fern gone on adventures with grandparents today,
Meer and I set out early to do chores and plant a small Fall garden.

It was cool. The sun was just hitting the trees above us.
Everything was still covered in a heavy wet dew.
We headed out the door, each of us with camera in hand and seeds in our pockets.
After letting out all of the birds then feeding and watering them,
we walked around the yard talking about dew and clouds.

After snapping some pictures, we made our way to the back of the barn.
This is where we planted our small garden.
We planted mixed greens, radishes and peas.
This is my first go at planting a late garden.
I have always wanted to plant a second crop but I've never quite managed to.
Having fresh Autumn peas would be nice.
Even though I didn't do much research into Fall planting times,
I did choose plants that could handle a frost; something to keep in mind when planting late.
There has been frost here as early as the beginning of September!

After Meer and I finished planting, we went back inside to check out our pictures,
and have a snack.