Ella had it Right—Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Blue Skies, nothing but, blue skies…(Ella Fitzgerald)

Blue-SKiesThe rains have gone, soon to be replaced with triple digit heat.

CanasI’m painting on the this side of the house today.

UPYesterday and the day before was up here! One thing about it, I could see for miles.  Although, I tried NOT to look down.

Evening-WorkIn the evening Terry, Boomer and I weed the pinto bean field.  It’s not toooo huge, only 20 acres.  We work at it morning and evening.  Once the beans shoot the feelers and the rows grow shut we won’t be able to weed anymore.  Weeding is terribly important…if you get too much trash in the pinto beans the elevator docks you for the cleaning of the beans.

Purple We take a break; sipping iced tea outside, in the cool of the shade.  Resting a spell and listening the bees hum as they gather pollen.

Your friend on a western Colorado farm,

Linda

Shimmering Heat—Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Evening-1Yesterday was HOT, so hot that my towels dried on the clothes line in half-an-hour, flapped and snapped with the afternoon wind.

Yellow-IrisIt made my laundry chores easy–wash, hang out, bring in, fold, and put away–load after load quickly ‘done’, no waiting about, finished!

Food The honey bees, the bumble bees and the hummingbirds all hummed and buzzed over the messy colorful flower beds as I washed windows and watered the flowers and the lawn.

It may have been hot, but it was peaceful.

rft.jpgThe evening was still extremely warm as we sat the water in the top field of corn, then skirting the alfalfa field we changed the set in the pinto bean field.

People think of night falling…falling down around the land, closing off the day.

nmjBut really night doesn’t fall, the shadows of the land rise, filling first the hollows and the valleys, climbing up the slopes of the mesas as the sun sinks lower and lower toward the west.  Gradually the shadows become darker creeping imperceptibly up fence posts and weeds.

The fields were so warm we could feel and smell the water as the earth and the plants sucked up the moisture.  It was a joy to irrigate since the irrigation water has also warmed, no longer feeling like a fresh melted snowbank.

gttrI stopped work to try and take a photo of the moon, which was gradually moving behind a pink cloud.  I turned to smile at Terry I told him there is a huge joy of trying to capture what we see on a daily basis and share it with you.

sgBy the time we were done, the sky had turned from pink to flaming gold.  The sun was somewhere over Utah and the ground, the farm, was started to join the greater dark of the star and moon lite night above.

My cup of joy runneth over! I wish for each of you, my friends, the same.

Love,

Linda

 

 

 

Dwellers of the Land—Tuesday, March 17, 2015

“Those who dwell among the beauties and mysteries of the earth are never alone or weary of life.”  — Rachel Carson

Farming-StartsToday Terry is plowing…he has the corn fields disked (twice, working until late in the night)— today he plows.  We both were stumped whether or not to plow…the weather people say there is a 40% chance of rain moving into our area tomorrow.

Forty percent is a pretty good chance that we will get it right here!  Plowed earth is like a sponge…after much pondering (the kind that keeps you up at night) he decided to go ahead and plow.  I guess we will see if that was a good decision or not come Wednesday morning. 🙂

I worked on cleaning the house yesterday and then in my yard.  My winter weary body is starting to get the hang of spring work, but it’s a slow process.

Tree

This afternoon Terry and I will work on the plumbing and wiring down at the other house.  Gradually, gradually everything is starting to take shape down there.

We want to have the electricity finished and the hot water heater moved before the last week in March.  The kids in Craig, Colorado, are coming for 10 days (Spring break) and want to stay in their old home.  We are SO close to being done, we just have to make the time to finish it.  I still have to paint one wall in the kitchen then that room is finished. (The the yard work down there starts, but  I will think about that later.)

I saw a butterfly yesterday!  It was a joy to see.  Also, the honey bees were out and about, not to mention the nasty house flies.  The house flies are still a little clingy and slow moving.

Spring is arriving!  YAY!

Your friend on a Western Colorado Farm,

Linda

 

 

Lavender and a Fence —-Thursday, July 10, 2014

Sun riseGosh, summer is flying by.  It wasn’t too long ago (around the Summer Solstices) the little birds were waking up at first light…singing sleepily to the lightening day.  For us here (it’s all relative I know) that was 4:40 in the morning.  Today I wake before the first cheep of the day, which occurs around 5:11 a.m.   The Sunrise: 5:56 a.m.; it now sets at 8:39 p.m.  Our Day length is fourteen hours and fort-three minutes.

On the Summer Solstice the sunrise was 5:48 a.m. and the sunset at 8:41 p.m.  Making our day fourteen hours and fifty-three minutes. It doesn’t seem like much because the days are warm and lovely and long.

Pinto-Bean-FieldI’ve been weeding in the pinto bean field.  I do it every evening.  I’m 3/4 of the way through. I need to hurry as the pinto beans are starting to bloom and to shoot feelers.  (The mosquitoes and hoards of other biting flying insects are having delicious time with me out there also!)

Once the rows grow shut the weeds will get to party.  (Then Terry and I will just have to ignore them.  It’s sort of hard because the pinto beans are planted in front of the house this year.  Not only will we see the weeds, but so will everyone else driving down the road 😦 )

LavendarMy lavender is just lovely!  I had to share it with you!

Lavendar-2The joyful sound of bees working with each blossom fills the summer air. When you move past the lavender plants the smell is of heaven. (I’m sure heaven must have a smell…don’t you?

Block-fenceMy contribution to this weeks Good Fences and Gates over on Teresa’s blog is a decorative cement block fence going up Third Street Hill in Delta. This house was originally built by a really good Physician in our town.

For more fun and unusual fences head on over to the Run *A* Round Ranch and check what others have posted.  It is surprising how many unusual fences and gates are out there in the big wide world.

Orange

Your Farm Friend on a lovely July Day,

Linda

The Adventures of Fuzzy and Boomer on Friday — Insects

Just like all of you everywhere, we have insects…big ones, little ones, ones who stink, ones who just crawl on you and make your fur have icky feelings, some which bite…like spiders and some with stingers!

Where we live we don’t have scorpions, although they do have them in Peach Valley and I saw one once.  They sure are pretty creepy to look at….that tail thing that swings up, up, up….just as I was about to give it a good sniff Mom got there and pulled me away.  She tried to stamp on it but it scuttled real fast under a log.

For shear creepiness there are centipedes ….Boomer found a couple of those under a log in the canyon.  He even yelped and ran off a tad then barked at the log, making Mom think he got stung, but he didn’t he was just was letting Mom know some creepy critter was under the log.

There are some HUGE centipedes in the canyons around us, Mom says, but Boom and I haven’t seen any.

Which is real good!

There are black widow spiders and brown recluses here also.  A friend of ours, died from a brown recluse bite.  She was a real beauty of a German Shepard.  We still miss her.

There are the honey bees, of course, they have stingers.  But they pretty much leave Boomer and I alone, we aren’t sweet enough for their tastes.

But the ones I don’t like are the Yellow Jacket Wasps. I snap at them if they get too close to me and my sleeping spots…my dog house, for example.

Boomer usually just tucks tail and tries to run away from them.

Now Yellow jacket Wasps really like houses, they set up their house anywhere they can along the eves of our main house.  Mom is really steady about keeping them off eves and out of any holes and cracks she can find.  Sometimes those angry bugs even try to make a home in the ends of the pipe holding up the clothes lines…they don’t last long there either.

For the first part of summer and the second part of summer those yellow striped winged stinger bugs pretty much mind their own business. But come AUGUST they change.  They start getting pretty darn serious about figuring out where they want to spend the winter and they get MEAN about it.

This means — THEY STING!!

Mom sometimes put vinegar on our noses (or other places) or a paste of baking soda and water, but if I snap at one and I get stung in the mouth…well, there doesn’t seem to be much Mom can do for me.

Yellow jacket wasps are everywhere right now.  Mainly because they have to hurry as fall is coming on and coming on fast.  I don’t care if the calendar says it is still the third week in August and the heat is supposed to be sitting heavy on the land, the land itself is saying it’s fall…late September early October…somehow we missed August.

Maybe we had July and August all at once…it sure was hot enough for such a thing to happen in July.

Mom took the following photo yesterday so you can see how much fall is on the land.

LOTS!

Anyway, we all were over helping Dad get the header for the bean combine….and yep!  There they were….masses of them.

Building a nest on the edge of the lip of the header….Dad still hooked up the header to the combine and drove the whole thing back to the yard.

Boomer and I were real worried… Dad was bringing that whole roiling nasty mess back to yard where WE LIVE!!!!

I shouldn’t have worried.  As soon as we got back, Mom went and got the trusty can of WASP SPRAY and it was over.

No more wasps.

Now Dad could get to work on getting the combine ready for harvest.

You know something?   Life is real good.

Fuzzy

 

 

 

 

I DID IT!!!!!!

I finally got a photo or two of a hummingbird!  It took lots of patience and lots of photos that didn’t turn our very good.

 

I hope you can see the tiny little green body getting a bite to eat in the middle of the hollyhock…

Here is a side view

And my favorite, the hummer looking right at me wondering what I was doing.

The hummer’s have left my feeders and just feed in the yard now…

Because the honey bees have found the feeders.

Fooey!

But I have lots an lots of trumpet shaped flowers in my yard…just because I want Hummers so they are not going hungry.

Everyday I have anywhere from 5 to 10 regular little hummers that spend their summer with us.  Lately we are seeing other hummers on their way through to their winter homes, so I don’t mind that the bees are cleaning up the sugar water.

I have lots of food for everyone.

Linda

 

 

 

 

 

Apricots for Wednesday

The apricot tree in the yard burst into bloom over night, Monday night.  This tree is a different variety than the other tree…the old apricot tree.

This one is only 40 years old.  I planted it when we moved here 40 years ago.  It, too, is a heritage apricot, but it produces a lighted apricot colored fruit.  The fruit is sweet and make wonderful jams.

Yes you can tell the difference between the two jams if you don’t mix the fruit while canning.

Now for having fruit trees in your yard, I have a couple of prune trees, four pear trees, several sour cherry trees and two standard delicious trees.  You see I was raised on an orchard.  My grandfather had 60 acres of all sorts of different fruit and my Dad had 180 acres of all types of different fruit.

I missed the trees when I moved to here, their lovely blooms, the deep shade under their branches and climbing into the trees and finding bird nests, and I missed the humming of the honey bees.

(We have lots of bees because we do NOT spray for bad bugs, but allow the good bugs to do their thing.)

So I planted fruit trees in my yard.

I would never ever in a million years do that again.

NEVER!

While it works well to live in the middle of an orchard, the house is usually in a ‘space’ of it’s own.  Having the trees right with you in the house space is very different. The problem occurs when the fruit comes on —- the fruit drops and turns to mush if you don’t get out there immediately and pick it up.  The birds get most of the fruit because you work and can’t get out there the second the fruit even thinks about turning ripe, the trees grow BIG and BIGGER and BIGGEST and of course the best fruit is UP THERE!  (So you must and have to prune…you can’t NOT prune, which is a winter job.)

Since the best fruit is UP THERE the birds get it first and they only peck on one side or they only peck on one spot.  After all it is a bird buffet and there is so much to choose from, so that fruit is gone, even after you pick it.  If you don’t get it picked ON TIME, then the fruit drops onto the grass or the flower bed or the side walk, whereby YOU MUST GET OUT THERE AND GET IT CLEANED UP NOW!

If you have little kids its a great job for them, but little kids grow up and leave so the job becomes yours.

Still I have all of the same fruit trees I planted when we moved here, I put up with the mess.  I enjoy the bees who are very happy to have delightful food the first thing in spring, and the  birds who feast on the fruit.   I can, I bake, I freeze and yes….
I pick up fruit by the wheel barrow loads before the mush turns into an ant feast.

Come spring, I fall in love with each and everyone of my fruit trees all over again.

And this is why!

The trees in spring always bring me this delightful surprise!

Linda