Monday, September 12, 2011

September, so far

How about a quick recap on what's been going on around here so far this month?

Ok...if you insist...

On September 2nd, Roxy, my farm pup: a haircut. Poor thing had to suffer with an orange and white polka-dotted ear bow until I took pity on her and took it out:

My sweet chicken, Skippy, is running with her flock again:

It makes me happy to hear her chatty little voice telling me "all about it" when I walk by her:

Her tail is perky and her comb a beautiful red:

On September 3rd, Skippy laid her first egg since she became sick 2 weeks ago. She laid it in the chicken run. In the straw. Underneath the roost. For all I know, she just dropped it from about 3 feet while sitting on the roost and it fell to the ground. It's filthy:

None of her eggs will be eaten for the next 30 days (to allow the antibiotics she was given during her illness to get out of her system), so as far as I'm concerned, she can lay them anywhere she wants. I'm just happy she's feeling well enough to lay again.

As I entertain thoughts of putting my garden to bed for the year, I am also already anticipating next year's garden. My heirloom sweet peas were so gorgeous in June:

and July:

That, also on September 3rd, I started saving the seeds from the largest sweet pea seed pods for next year:

I am also saving seeds from our beloved "Maestro" shelling peas:

and some wild Lupine that grows well around here:

On September 5th, I cuddled a chicken named Honey on my lap:

On September 6th, the poisonous plant patrol (the P.P.P.) continued its thankless, never-ending job. No matter how much I pull, there is always more. The nasty ones in my pasture? Ragwort, Foxglove, and St. John's Wort: banes of my existence:

Despite my early-season worrying, I've had a great raspberry crop this year:

In spring and early summer this year, the plants were small, and the leaves were tiny and yellowed - but they really rallied and I've gotten pounds and pounds of fruit in the last 6 weeks:

I love the late season raspberries - they are the ones that grow at the very ends of the canes and are huge:

They are the cream of the crop, so to speak:

September 8th was the day I made two big batches of low-sugar/no-pectin raspberry jam:

And now there's a whole buncha raspberry jam in my pantry:

The Kentucky Wonder beans I'm growing for the first time this year:

...showed me on September 9th what all the fuss is about. Wow! They're huge! They're quite tasty, too:

I'm probably the only person in the world who doesn't have much success growing zucchini. Seriously. Every year I plant them and every year I get, maybe, two or three. Zucchini #2 this year made its presence known to me also on September 9th:

Pretty little fellow, wouldn't you say?

On September 10th, I got stung by a yellow jacket. No picture and it hurt like crazy, but I totally pretended nothing happened because I was talking with the sprinkler repair guy at the time.
Fortunately, that didn't ruin the entire day, because I also found my first ripe jalapeno pepper:

Who wouldn't feel happy at this amazingly beautiful site - look at that color!

Also on September 10th, I noticed that the sun is now setting in the trees inside our donkey woods, instead of over the middle pasture with the coast range visible in the distance. This is an absolute sign of impending fall:

The Music garlic that was hanging in my barn: - since September 11th - in a basket on my dining table awaiting trimming and storage:

And today, September 12th, I observed my llama, Kai's, infinite patience with her goat charges:

After tipping the hay bucket and spreading most of its contents across the ground:

Pete and Reggie, then decided to head butt so violently that Kai lost her footing and slipped on the hay multiple times:

...but she just righted the bucket and kept on eating:

And that's pretty much September in a nutshell. Now we're all caught up.
Care for an apple?:


  1. The bane of our pasture is Johnson grass. Sounds good, but poisonous when stressed.

    Other than that, I think it's okay. The neighbor used to pasture cattle in it until he passed away last year.

    Your jam looks fantastic!

    Really glad to hear that Skippy is back doing chicken things again. :)

    Poor Kai. Haha. :)

    Happy Tuesday to you!

  2. I love raspberries. Don't those silly goats know they'll knock a knot on their heads.

  3. September is a most excellent time of the year at Critter Farm, but then isn't every month? Seeing Skippy out and about is such a relief.

  4. thanks for the walkabout! the raspberries look delicious! LOVE the pic of the hen stealing her share! :)

  5. Mmmmm... love seeing your garden produce.
    I can't believe the size of your raspberries! They are huge!

  6. Love it! Especially all the happy, healthy reports on the critters. Truly a bounty of good fortune there!

  7. I can't grow zucchini either. The weather was wacky this year and the garden not as bountiful as last year. Part could be because I didn't add MiracleGro soil, like I did the past two years. Kai should get that apple-such a patient llama!

  8. Geeze Lueeze! Things are hopping at Critter Farm this month. I'm so envious of those gorgeous raspberries and the jam you put up is beautiful too. And seeing Skipping up and about brings a smile to my face, as do Pete and Reggie's antics with Kai just tolerating them. The sweet peas are just that . . . sweet. The garlic hanging, the number 2 zucchini (so weird, eh?) the amazing string beans . . . looks like a great summer has passed over Critter Farm!

  9. Could I have that apple, please? It looks like it might be fresh and tart. And a few of those sweet pea seeds? I won't ask for the Maestro seed, because we just do not have good luck with any peas here.

    Kai is true patience personified. She is just amazing with those two nutty goat boys. I am missing my donkey boys. Was their September uneventful?

  10. I'm so happy to hear that Skippy is doing well, but my favorite photo had to be the one showing the cuddling going on with Honey. You two have a beautiful relationship.

    All of my (3) zucchini plants died overnight in one night. I have no idea what happened. It was a spectacular failure, but I'm grateful it was them and not my pickling cucumbers!

  11. i love the picture of the chicken sneaking a raspberry. nom nom nom.

  12. I have raspberry envy. They don't grow well at my place -- too much sun, not enough rain, I suspect. I'll trade you some zucchini for some of those spectacular raspberries!

  13. you sure have a prosperous garden! i guess you don't have stink bugs yet? is roxy using her leg yet? glad to see skippy healthy and happy!

  14. Wow, you guys have been busy! The fruits and veggies look yummy and kids are beautiful as always! Even those silly goatie boys!

  15. Danni, this was such a lovely visit to your place (via photos). Crazy goats! Glad your little hen is feeling better.

  16. It looks like you had a great garden!

  17. I was looking at your egg count and it looks like you are on pace for a major drop-off this year, and you even added three more hens. What happened? Are chickens only good for two years?

  18. Hi Zitrone - You can have as many of those sweet pea seeds as you want! xo

    Chai-Chai - I'm a bad blogger - I haven't updated my egg count in about 2 months. I will do it soon, I promise. Regardless, though, you are correct - my egg count will be taking a significant drop this year. My sweet girls are getting older....

  19. Hi Danni,
    I really like your all images specially of Roxy. And the strawberries looks fresh.
    Thanks for Sharing.

  20. Glad to see you are having so much fun - and Yippee Skippy!!!

  21. awesome post, awesome pictures
    LOVE YOUR GARDEN!!! And I'm so glad Skippy is feeling well enough to lay. How do you know which eggs are hers though? IN order to not eat them?

  22. I would love to grow rasberries here. We had them when I lived in Sandpoint Idaho for a couple of years when I wwas a teenager. I do get good zuccikini and watermelons as well as tomatoes and this year cucumbers. but none of my fruit trees ever produce. To cold in the spring to hot in the summer and no rain.


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