Friday, June 22, 2012

Blind Faith: Reflections on Father's Day

Chilling in the grass

As the weather steadily gets warmer I find myself taking my daughter to play on the local church lawn more and more often. It is the closest big flat grassy area to our house, and since flat areas are hard to come by on our little piece of land, I have been making the steep and arduous trek up there whenever the sun shines. The church is old and has a few huge uneven granite steps leading up to the front doors. We spend a lot of time going up and down these steps, ignoring the lawn and the toys I have so invitingly spread out on it.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

New Bees, Old Burdens

A queen cage. Notice the white dot on the queen's abdomen.
One always approaches the beginning of the beekeeping season with trepidation. Did the hive survive the winter? Do they have a queen? Is she going to lay? When will first bloom be? They are delicate creatures, at least up here in the great white north they are. So it was with joy that I discovered both of my hives had survived. An excellent start. I started to count the extra pounds of honey I was going to harvest with two hives at full strength from the get go. But Grandma always said don't count your honey before it is bottled. Or something like that.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Garden Gossip

A nice row of bush beans.

Last year was not a great year for the gardens at my place. With O. being born in March, any planting was haphazard at best. I had the best of intentions to make this year better, but it has not really panned out. Some tomato plants, some winter squash and some bush beans just about sums it up for the vegetables. That and some carrots, which are usually a complete pain in the ass to plant because the seeds are so small, and then you have to thin them, which no one ever does well enough, and then the carrots end up tiny and oddly shaped. Not this year. This year I found Carrot Tape, which are seeds spaced perfectly apart, embedded in a biodegradable paper strip. All I had to do was make a little trench, cut the tape to length, and I was done. A couple hundred carrots planted in five minutes. If this works I am will be a fan for life.

Two things I am psyched about garden-wise are my blueberry bushes and my sapling screen.