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Farm For All - A Journal Of Sorts

 
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Posts: 386
Location: Oregon 8b
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monies dog forest garden fungi foraging homestead
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Andrew Sackville-West wrote:Cool to see the scything results. A scythe is on my (long) list of wants...

And favas! It seems super early to me, but I've never grown them before, so what do I know? When did they go in the ground?



This is about 2 weeks later than last year on the favas... but last year was weird. These ones were planted mid-October.

I have a dream of giving away a scythe when my channel gets big enough. We'll see if it happens. Went through 3 weed eaters in like 2 years. Hate them. The scythe works better, isn't annoying to listen to or operate, easier to maintain, is faster than a weed eater, doesn't litter bits of plastic, and will last a lifetime if well cared for. It was definitely cheaper than 3 weed eaters and line. Little bit of a learning curve, but you can do a decent job after any 4-8 hours of practice. And it produces an excellent mulch. Highly recommend.
 
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Location: Harlan, Oregon Coast Range
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[Scythe...] Highly recommend



You've convinced me. I'm moving it up my list :)
 
Mathew Trotter
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Posts: 386
Location: Oregon 8b
97
monies dog forest garden fungi foraging homestead
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Just doing a quick picture dump fit my records. A lot of things popped up or seemingly doubled in size over. Especially excited to see my first popbeans and lentils. Quite a few pictures, so not going to label them. If you wanna know what anything is, just ask... it hop over to my instagram and read the descriptions there (@stonedapefarmer).

Also, I'm literally 1 subscriber of hitting my goal for the month. I think we're gonna get there.
IMG_20210429_102121_986.jpg
Fava
Fava
IMG_20210429_102245_539.jpg
Carrots (9 day germination)
Carrots (9 day germination)
IMG_20210429_102503_885.jpg
Spinach
Spinach
IMG_20210429_102552_075.jpg
Mustard
Mustard
IMG_20210429_102635_414.jpg
Lettuce from saved seed
Lettuce from saved seed
IMG_20210429_102728_000.jpg
Hosta
Hosta
IMG_20210429_102813_990.jpg
Kaleidoscope perennial kale
Kaleidoscope perennial kale
IMG_20210429_103012_796.jpg
Shelling peas
Shelling peas
IMG_20210429_103101_915.jpg
Snow peas
Snow peas
IMG_20210429_103308_083.jpg
Volunteer turnip
Volunteer turnip
IMG_20210429_103416_768.jpg
Hops
Hops
IMG_20210429_103518_737.jpg
Multiplier onion
Multiplier onion
IMG_20210429_103659_857.jpg
Goumi
Goumi
IMG_20210429_103755_595.jpg
Gooseberry
Gooseberry
IMG_20210429_103906_939.jpg
Blueberry
Blueberry
IMG_20210429_103936_461.jpg
Sunchoke
Sunchoke
IMG_20210429_104004_702.jpg
Poppies
Poppies
IMG_20210429_104133_948.jpg
Soup peas
Soup peas
IMG_20210429_104221_503.jpg
Popbeans
Popbeans
IMG_20210429_104350_706.jpg
Wild chamomile transplants
Wild chamomile transplants
IMG_20210429_104526_536.jpg
Winter peas
Winter peas
IMG_20210429_104608_139.jpg
Lentils
Lentils
IMG_20210429_104728_812.jpg
Asparagus (finally)
Asparagus (finally)
IMG_20210429_104810_981.jpg
Volunteer wheat
Volunteer wheat
 
Mathew Trotter
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Posts: 386
Location: Oregon 8b
97
monies dog forest garden fungi foraging homestead
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And the last few...
IMG_20210429_105137_373.jpg
Raspberry
Raspberry
IMG_20210429_105227_714.jpg
Seedling rhubarb
Seedling rhubarb
IMG_20210429_105311_816.jpg
Flowering comfrey
Flowering comfrey
IMG_20210429_105426_329.jpg
Pomegranate seeding
Pomegranate seeding
 
Mathew Trotter
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Posts: 386
Location: Oregon 8b
97
monies dog forest garden fungi foraging homestead
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Planted and mulched the last 25 feet each of carrots and parsnips. Have gotten lots of mulching done in the last couple of days and it's finally starting to feel like I'm gaining some ground. Decided to switch gears and spend some time getting perennials into the ground today. I'm setting up my contour rows to have (primarily) fast growing annual legumes on the contour, the contour armored with rocks, and then the downhill side planted out to perennials. Today I worked on the downhill side of the popbeans and in addition to the wild chamomile that I transplanted the other day I also transplanted a native iris as well as an artichoke, a fig, a couple strawberries, an asparagus seedling, oregano, lovage, and sea kale. Probably missing something on that list. Lots of other things in the nursery that I need to start plugging in. And more native species that I want to find, either here or elsewhere, and transplant.
IMG_20210429_160036_043.jpg
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Mathew Trotter
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Posts: 386
Location: Oregon 8b
97
monies dog forest garden fungi foraging homestead
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Yesterday was a long day of babysitting, but in exchange I got some seed starting mix (which will hopefully help with the impossible moisture swings I've been dealing with while trying to start things in pure compost) as well as a few other odds and ends that I've been wanting/needing. Today I potted up tomatoes, peppers, tomatillos, celery, and fennel which have been such 1.5 inch cell trays for waaaaaaay too long. Perfect for the random cool and gray day we're having.

I also decided to pop of and pot up my first test oca slip. It's possibly a little premature... It didn't have a ton of root development... but oca cuttings are supposed to root readily in water or soil, so I'm banking on it not making that much of a difference to pull it early. If it doesn't make it, then I'll know that I need to wait longer before taking the next slip.

On the subject of rooting things in water, if you watched my video on pull sprouts, I speculated that potatoes could be propagated by stern cuttings like pretty much any other tuber crop. And because my pull sprouts were getting leggy from their long stint in low light conditions, I decided to lop off the leggy top growth and drop them in water to see if they'd root. That was an unqualified success. Potato stem cuttings do indeed root in water, and I suspect I may be using this technique to increase the number of plants I get from my rare Peruvian potato breeding project. If plants die, or I simply want to expand my potato patch, I'll be able to do so from cuttings.

And on the subject of Andean potatoes, now that I have seed starting mix, I started two 72-cell trays with my Peruvian TPS accessions (plus some seeds of sarpo mira and Joseph Lofthouse's landrace potatoes that were sent to me.) Bill Whitson recommends starting true potato seeds from 6-8 weeks before last frost all the way through August in our climate, with starting seeds too early being a major source of issues with true seed. Because many of the Peruvian accessions are likely to be short day tuberizers anyway, a later start is especially non-problematic. And given the absolute hell I've had with solanums in my less than ideal setup, I've decided that starting them 2-3 trays at a time and then starting more after I plant those outβ€”either through August, or until I'm satisfied with the number of plants I have in the groundβ€”is the only way I can ensure that I don't end up with more potatoes than I can deal with at any given time. That will put me in the ballpark of 650 potatoes, maybe more depending on how this first round goes and how I tweak the process.

I'm other news, the legumes I have on contour are going crazy. A vole or something has been getting into the lentils... but it appears that it's only after the remnants of the seeds as the plants and their roots have been left intact on the soil's surface. I'm glad that it's lentils that they're going for since I planted so many on such a tight spacing that if something has to a sacrificial trap crop, it's better them than anything else.

I suspect that I'll be harvesting my first favas by the end of the week. Berries are starting to set on my blueberries, gooseberries, and goumis. My herbs and greens are really starting to take off as well, but they're not to the point that I can start making regular harvests... but I am looking forward to cilantro far more than I ever thought I would. Hopefully that's another thing that will be ready for dinner regular harvests by the end of the week. We'll see.

Something did devour one of my perennial kales, which is a bummer but not the end of the world.

Anyway can't think of anything else with mentioning, so I'll end this with a few pictures.
IMG_20210502_131109_HDR.jpg
Oca slip
Oca slip
IMG_20210502_131423_HDR.jpg
Rooted potato cutting
Rooted potato cutting
 
Mathew Trotter
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Location: Oregon 8b
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monies dog forest garden fungi foraging homestead
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Was going to go do more scything on the owners septic field this morning, but I remembered when I went by this weekend that the nettles were starting to get pretty tall, so I decided to take the morning to harvest them for nettle tea, which is the best fertilizer/pest deterrent combo that I've personally used. In less than an hour I was able to scythe and gather a 20-gallon trash can full of (mostly) nettles, and most of that hour was just walking between the different patches so that I was only harvesting from where they were well-established. Unfortunately, most of them are already flowering, so I'm kinda missing my opportunity to harvest some for food. There are still some small patches that are in deeper shade and not as far along, but the larger patches are pretty well past their prime. Still great for fertilizer, though.

Also got lucky and found a patch of alder seedlings by the creek while I was scything, and the soil was damp and lose enough, and the trees young enough, that I was able to pull them up with their roots almost entirely intact. Got about a dozen in this round, but there are more as I need them. I was just bemoaning the fact that I didn't really have a lot of woody perennial nitrogen fixers to complement all of the productive species I've been putting in the ground (I have seeds for stuff, but haven't managed to get any of them started yet.) But now I have a row of alders planted on the uphill side of the contour I've been planting out, just above the popbeans, which can now be chopped and dropped fruit the productive species. I also planted a row along the driveway that I want to try pleaching together, but l both to act as a trellis for vines, as well as to create a physical barrier to discourage the deer from cutting through the food forest. There are 3 access points for vehicle access, but that creates pinch points that increase the odds that they'll be confronted by my dog, and I'll also have the option of building gates to further reduce access if necessary. I've seen some deer sign, but not nearly as much as last year, and it seems that they'll mostly cutting through and not loitering, so it shouldn't take much to discourage them further.
IMG_20210502_203612_HDR.jpg
Also had a bird invite itself in last night
Also had a bird invite itself in last night
IMG_20210503_075711_HDR.jpg
Alder seedlings
Alder seedlings
IMG_20210503_082751_HDR.jpg
I assume these are nodules from whatever species alder associates with?
I assume these are nodules from whatever species alder associates with?
IMG_20210503_081437.jpg
20 gallons of nettle
20 gallons of nettle
IMG_20210503_100854.jpg
Alder on contour
Alder on contour
IMG_20210503_081240.jpg
Are these oysters? Obviously past their prime, but I might not use them for hugels if I can get another flush out of them.
Are these oysters? Obviously past their prime, but I might not use them for hugels if I can get another flush out of them.
 
Mathew Trotter
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monies dog forest garden fungi foraging homestead
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From Hugelpathβ„’

Huh. I just realized that the Hugelpath is already working. I went out to pick some kale for breakfast and made the same observation that I've been making, which is that half of my plants are growing maybe 75% faster than the other half. That's the funny thing about taking on huge work loads and having the constant stress of getting things done, you just don't have the time to slow down and make the super obvious observations... [READ MORE]

 
Mathew Trotter
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monies dog forest garden fungi foraging homestead
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Does anybody know anything about immature fava beans inducing vomiting? Because that's how my day went.

Every source I've seen says that the immature pods are edible, and I've eaten my share of favas at the shelling stage without issue, so I'm suspecting that it's coincidence that I got sick after the favas... but it certainly makes me in no hurry to try them again. I'll just wait for them to reach the shelling stage where I know by body tolerates them.

At any rate, felt like crap most of the day. Managed to get a little bit of filming done and put together this short teaser for Thursday's videos. I'm starting to think that every other week is definitely the way to go so that I don't have to split my attention between the garden and video... though we'll see if the numbers bear that out as an effective strategy. There's definitely been a slump this past week without a new video for people to watch, so we'll see if the algorithm continues to punish me once the new video goes up...

 
Mathew Trotter
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Location: Oregon 8b
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monies dog forest garden fungi foraging homestead
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It only took until 1am to finish this video... which I suppose is an improvement? Still ended up feeling way more rushed than I'd like... wish I wasn't so sick on Tuesday so I could get my filming done like I'd planned... but still an improvement over the last video. I'm kinda coming up on the limits of what my phone can handle, though. By the end of the edit it was almost unusable and it made putting finishing touches on it difficult. Veeeeery laggy. Still didn't do everything I would have liked, but better than nothing. I'm going to actually need to be able to edit on a computer at the rate I'm going.

Everything's starting to pop in the garden. Tomorrow might be a day to take a bunch of pictures. The cilantro is starting to look like cilantro, the greens are filling out, and my broccoli/scorzonera/beet row has completely germinated, which seems super fast to me. Well, the broccoli sprouted 2 or 3 days ago and THAT seemed super fast at least. I don't actually remember what day I put them in the ground, so it was probably a reasonable length of time.

The legumes continue to impress.... other than the soup peas. I planted about 175 soup peas and I've only spotted about a dozen or so so far. Popbeans, winter peas, and lentils all look amazing, though. Video has taken over my life this week, so after today I need to double down and get the next bed prepped. Just finished running the chicken tractor over it.

Don't know if I've mentioned that there are more chickens on the way. The friends that trades me feed for eggs wanted even more, so we have 15 more birds coming in about a month. Hoping to develop a nice landrace of dual purpose birds with good foraging instinct, but a little less feral than the Icelandics I've had in the past. To my existing buff orpingtons I'm adding black australorps, columbian wyandottes, and bielefelders. Wanted to add welsummers as well, but the hatchery didn't have ANY shipping dates available for all 4 breeds. At some point I'll add in some welsummers, and then maybe add a little bit of icelandic back in.

Anyway. Apparently I need to go tend to the garden before my video goes live. Come and chat with me at 2pm when the video premieres!

 
Mathew Trotter
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Location: Oregon 8b
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monies dog forest garden fungi foraging homestead
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Man, it's been a long week. The whole day on Friday was spent cleaning and organizing the barn before the landowner got back and started piling more mess on top of what was already a barely functional space. It was hard to choose that over getting work done in the garden, but I think it ultimately will save me time going forward.

Saturday the landowner got back from their winter hideaway, and I spent a couple hours scything the septic field before a friend swung by to take me plant shopping. Her and her family are the ones we're trying to get set up to move out here next so she has a vested interest in making sure there's adequate food production. She picked up one of her favorite blueberries and we also got a Parfinka (?) pomegranate, some bloody dock, a roman chamomile, and a tea bush. There just weren't a ton of food producing plants at the nurseries right now... I don't know if that's because it was mother's day weekend and so they had prioritized flowers, if the supply of food producing plants is just that limited right now, or if that's what the selection usually looks like this time of year. I don't usually hit up the nurseries until the end of the season when things start going on clearance.

Spent yesterday with my mom for mother's day after spending the morning scything down the thistles in the forest garden, and the poison oak on one of the deer trails that I'm sure my dog is walking through constantly. Came home early so I could finish getting plants in the ground, but I was beat and went to bed early.

Now I'm getting ready to go out and do another round of scyhing. This will probably be a last pass through the septic field before I start over at the beginning. Have a few other areas to clean up that I might prioritize, but we'll see. I actually left the mulch on the ground the other morning when I scythed. I wanted to see if leaving it to dry for a few days would make it more efficient to collect... most of the work in collecting freshly scythed grass is just in how much it weighs. You can pick up quite a bit of grass on the end of a hay fork, but weight is definitely the limiting factor. So, I'll go up and scythe today and then pick up the mulch that I scythed on Saturday.

I am super bummed that my latest video got a bit of traction in Russia and Ukraine, but Youtube hadn't finished processing my subtitles yet, so there was no way to translate my video into Russian. That really hurt my video's numbers, since about a quarter of my total traffic ended up having an average view duration of 12 seconds... just long enough to figure out that they had no idea what was going on. I really don't want to start doing the work to transcribe my videos when Youtube will already do it automatically, but I either have to do that, or get my videos uploaded well in advance of when they go live so that subtitles have time to process. That option makes more sense... I just don't know how I'm going to create some extra space in my schedule to make that happen.

In any event, I hope everyone had a good mother's day weekend. Time for me to go hit the hay. Or, rather, scythe it.
 
Mathew Trotter
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Baby potatoes. That is all.
IMG_20210510_122116.jpg
[Thumbnail for IMG_20210510_122116.jpg]
 
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