Hydroponic Microgreens

Trying a new experiment here. We have a couple of entrepreneurs nearby who developed an incredible hydroponic greenhouse. You can see what they are doing on this website… Upward Harvest

It’s really worth watching, I promise, you will be amazed. We bought a flat of mixed micro-greens to plant in our garden…

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As you can see there are all kinds of greens…kale, arugula, watercress, peas, beets etc.  I planted them in our garden and covered them with netting to protect them from deer, rabbits, turkey, grasshoppers and all the delightful creatures we have about…

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So we’ll see how they do. In the hoop house the beans are growing valiantly…

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Along with the marigolds…

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We have an abundance of hot peppers…

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We purchased new plastic for the hoop house and hopefully we will have that up before it freezes.

It’s September and in September I do the 30 Paintings in 30 Days Challenge, thought I’d share one here with you all just for fun…

Little Chicken Rancher ©2014 Karin NaylorThe Little Chicken Rancher

To see more you’ll have to visit my other blog Simply Painting.

Take care… 🙂

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Instant Fall Garden

Last year I started this blog to journal my experience with a fall garden. This year after all my fall seedlings were eaten up with “little i don’t know whats”, I pretty much gave up…not just pretty much, I totally gave up, and let my hoop house die out…stopped watering…stopped weeding…stopped caring…

So the other day I had a little revival and finally went over and cleaned up the hoop house, and to my surprise there were a few scraggly half dried up tomato plants and one pepper plant still hanging on…

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I watered all the beds deeply, and if anyone has ever mixed up totally dry dirt with water, you know that you have to mix and mix and mix, and the water has a hard time penetrating. I let it all sit over night and get well absorbed…

My girls picked up some cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, chard, mustard, bok choy and Brussels sprouts plants at the nursery and VOILA! …

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Instant Fall Garden…For some reason I feel like I’m cheating…

So twice this year I resorted to the nursery for all ready grown plants after my seedlings were eaten up and in the spring when a very late unusual freeze killed all my tomato plants.

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Now I’m going to dust everything with DE… 🙂

August Reflections

As I sit here and type reflecting on this August soon to be over, the fragrance of fresh picked basil fills the air around me… makes me think of pesto and fresh tomato mozzarella pizza with lots of basil leaves scattered on top…absolutely my favorite kind of pizza. : )

Rosemary and oregano in the bouquet on the table…love herbs…

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Who would have guessed that?  With a title like Rosemary, Lavender and Thyme…

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Love zinnias too… They are prolific right now…

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Sedum, hosta flowers, liriope, lamb’s ears…

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Oat grass in a favorite blue glazed ceramic pot…

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Love the colors…

I’m listening to a daughter chopping cucumbers and making bread and butter pickles…We have such an abundance of cukes this year…it’s crazy…

Painted a bouquet of gorgeous flowers from a photo blog…couldn’t help myself…so fun…so many incredible colors…

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The temps are more normal for August in Oklahoma…HOT, but for the first time since I’ve lived here, I’m actually going to miss summer…unbelievable!

I still wear my boots, long sleeves and trusty gloves to go pick tomatoes in the field to avoid chiggers and ticks, but this year incredibly I’ve only found one tick on me and that was last night and I’ve only had a mere 6 chigger bites… again unbelievable!

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Our charming neighbors stop by for a visit…a mama deer and her three fawns…

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They have been leaving my garden alone…I think the glittering of the shiny CDs really works to keep them at bay…

Seeds of kale and bok choy started in pots and lettuce, spinach, parsley started out in the garden…going to plant radishes, broccoli and cabbage a little later today. It’s soon to be fall…

Aaaaaaaphids!!! …

I can’t tell you how much I hate bugs. Aphids are little, but let me tell you, there were hundreds, no thousands, all over my kale this morning…

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It has been really warm the past few days…warm enough for these guys to multiply rapidly. I made up some dish soap, oil and water solution and pulled out all the infected plants, dug up any bugs I could see on the soil and sprayed…sprayed…sprayed…

How to Make a Home Remedy to Get Rid of Aphids

The greenhouse now…so sad… 😦

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But we still have pansies…

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I took all the aphids and grubs I dug up out of the greenhouse and wheel-barrowed them down to the coop… The chickens ran up to me all excited like they always are when they think I’m bringing a treat…

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They wouldn’t touch the goodies I brought them…

Oh, well…they are good at laying eggs…

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Just love the coppery color of these Marans eggs!

It’s April

Time is flying by… It’s April already and here’s my garden update…

Added more border to the strawberry bed…

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Planted cilantro, carrot and beet seeds…

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Found some garlic growing in a big clump, so I transplanted it next to the garlic that was already in the bed…

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Peas are coming right along…

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Red lettuce and parsley in the greenhouse…

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And kale…

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Tomatoes and peppers under the gro lights…

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I don’t really know what went wrong with the tomatoes, but I ended up thinning them out and throwing out half of them that seemed unhealthy and some that had white leaves. Perhaps they were too close to the lights, or maybe it got too cold. I’m really not sure…

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Looking kind of bare…but we still have about 40 tomato plants. I also started some sunflowers and fennel.

My son found some hanging tomato planters at a garage sale for 3 for $10.00. We bought 6 of them.

You can also grow strawberries and cucumbers in these Topsy Turvy planters.

Now the most exciting thing that happened here this week is the pergola that my son built…He measured everything so carefully…

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And here it is almost done…

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So proud of my son. He did a great job!  LOVE IT!

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Until next time…

Garden Update

When Anna and I were sick we worked up a garden plan. We based it on what we learned watching the Back to Eden Film.  So, our garden now has new rows and  into the rows went 3 different kinds of Sugar Snap peas…2 different kinds of lettuce…2 different kinds of radishes…bok choy and spinach.

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As you can see we are using a lot of mulch…The idea behind using a very thick layer of mulch is  keeping the moisture in the ground for the plants, and  breaking down into nutritious soil nutrients, as leaves and tree bark do naturally in nature.

Here is a view of our soon to be lettuce and pea patch…

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Kale from the greenhouse…

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Tomatoes are coming right along under the grow lights…

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And so are the peppers and other miscellaneous veggies…

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This last week we trapped a skunk and a very large raccoon down by the chicken coops.  So glad they didn’t get the chickens! If this happens again I will try and get a picture…

Out in the backyard we started the new bed for the blueberries and strawberries.

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I need to hurry up and buy a few more blueberry plants. The ones I have are blooming because they are sitting by the grow lights…

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And one last thing…look what I found under a piece of flagstone…

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Love that brilliant yellow color, but it is probably supposed to be green. I’m glad I moved the rock so it can grow into what it is supposed to be.  I forgot what I planted there, so it will be a surprise. 🙂

It’s Been a Good Day

Got a lot done today, actually yesterday now…completely cleaned up the chicken coops. Put new organic feed in the feeders and water with a little Bragg’s Apple Cider vinegar in the water…Chickens are happy and doing fine. We are getting 3 to 4 eggs a day.

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I hauled two loads of pine shavings and chicken poop up to the compost pile. This is what our compost looks like…Wild isn’t it???

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This is my husband’s menagerie of compost bins…He really knows how to make excellent compost! The tallest bins are old pickle barrels and then there are two black trash cans, all of which have holes punched in them for aeration and then we inherited the round one from the neighbor next door. He fills them with veggie scraps, grass clippings, manure, and hay and rolls them around. It goes a little slower in winter when it is cold…

The old dried up asparagus ferns needed cutting so I did that and also raked out the leaves from the bed…Can’t wait until we have fresh asparagus!

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Inside the greenhouse, I weeded all the beds and picked a couple of handfuls of kale, and handful of spinach and then watered…I just don’t think the Brussels sprouts are ever going to produce…I think that perhaps the best thing to do next year is start them inside the air conditioned house under grow lights in the summer and then maybe they will have a head start in the fall when it’s not so hot. Starting a fall garden when it is 100 degrees outside is impossible, I think.

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I transplanted some red lettuce that overwintered outside into the parsley patch… Our parsley has finally thinned itself out. There are not too many plants left.

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I already noticed some of those little moths that were a problem last fall. So I need to go back and give everything a good dusting of DE.

Inside the house we set up the grow lights…

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This was just a 4 foot fluorescent shop light that costs about $18 at Lowe’s plus two 48″ plant and aquarium bulbs that were about $10 a piece. I will be making up another tray of seeds…

Went out to buy some blueberries and found these at Lowe’s for $10 a piece…

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Got all this done yesterday and it snowed today…Yay! We have so much need for moisture here and this is really the first good snowfall all winter!

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A little side trip…on our way to get blueberries we went to Cafe Evoke…Yum!

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And to Sprouts where we saw the cutest recycled bags…Anyone remember this???    It will really tell your age…; )

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For those of you too young to know Dick and Jane. They were the little characters in our first grade reading books back in the 50s.

Signing off again with one of my blurry photos. I can’t figure out why my camera does this…but I like these artsy blurs…

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