Rain rain go away,
Come again another day.-English Nursery Rhyme
At this point in the Summer, we are months behind where we would be normally, if Mother Nature wasn’t deciding to flood us out. Just when the sun peeks her head from the clouds, the rain drops begin falling, big and soft, hard and fast, sheet like. You name it, we’ve had all the types of rainfall this season.
Despite the seemingly never ending Summer showers, we are still making the most out of the season while we can here on the farm. Despite her best efforts, Mother Nature has not yet been able to completely kill everything growing in the vegetable garden this year. Our colder weather crops are hanging in there, with little carrot tops peeking out of the soil, peas growing to incredible heights and little baby cauliflower poking their heads from between the foliage. With the weather it’s been hard to get out weeding in between rows, so the garden is looking a little overgrown this year. But fingers crossed we will still be seeing a harvest of most things planted. I mean, the weather has to turn around at some point, I’m thinking August must be our month!
Moving our garden this year was the best thing we could have done, as it now sits on a little slope, giving us the drainage we need during this rainy season. Meanwhile, back in the old garden, the weeds have taken over next to my little patches of wildflowers, which are struggling to bloom with a lack of sunshine. They persevere, and I am finally seeing the first little pops of colour appear.
Out back in the woods, the wildflowers are flourishing under the canopies of trees and greenery. Taking advantage of breaks in the rain, forest walks are a must for picking wild wood bouquets. I love a good ol’ adventure into the woods with our little pack, Dan usually leading, Lily and Hank off adventuring, and Sophie and I meandering along taking up the rear of the line.
The garden isn’t the only thing the cooler, wet weather has been hard on this summer, as we make sure to keep a close eye on the beehive activity. It is hard for the bees to get out foraging in the rain, but you better believe those hives are buzzing while the sun shines! Our first split from earlier in the Summer is still in the nuc box. We had been hoping the hive, along with the help of frames full of eggs and brood from our other healthy hives, would encourage the bees to requeen themselves naturally. Unfortunately, this hasn’t been the case yet and so we intervened. We purchased a queen bee from a local beekeeper and have inserted her into the nuc box. We will check in a week or so to make sure she has taken to the hive, and then move this new colony into a hive box so they can start preparing for their Winter season.
The rain doesn’t seem to bother any of the other animals too much here on the farm, as everyone has shelters out of the rain and warm bedding to hide out in when the weather turns. But you can find everyone out basking in the rays when the sun does show her face. The alpacas and donkeys are usually found over by the pig pen, cleaning up what little grain they can convince the pigs to spill outside the pen. The goats, having free access now to the woodland lot beside them, can be spotted time to time crossing the little creek bridge or rummaging through the undergrowth along the back fenceline. Of course the three little pigs are in pig heaven, with all this rain creating a constant little creek through their pen, with lush greens for snacking and soft spots for lounging.
If there was anybody else hoping for sun as much as me, I would think it would be our laying hens. They miss their sunshine naps in the grass. Egg production has kept up fairly well, all things considered. Maybe our LOOP pickups are keeping them satisfied enough to keep laying! We also made the decision to get rid of our big rooster, Chanticleer, and send him to freezer camp. He was starting to get a little too ambitious with some of our ladies. Since, then we have noticed an increase in eggs again. We also have a handsome new little man of the coop, Thor, our Icelandic roo. This little heritage breed is so beautiful, and while he won’t get much bigger, he has lots of personality to make up for it.
Hank continues to grow like a weed. He has now reached the same height as Sophie and Lily, and has a long ways to go yet to being full grown. He is just the sweetest little pup, and has fit so well into life on the farm here with us. I wish he’d stop growing so fast, I don’t know where my LITTLE big dog has gone!
It wouldn’t be a summer season without some home made goodies and fermenting going on on the farm either. With our rhubarb patch out of control this year, the only logical thing to do was start a big batch of rhubarb wine! We are excited to play a bit this year with the recipe and see how we can improve from last seasons batch. We also had a bumper crop of Haskap berries from our bushes this year, and while it wasn’t quite enough yet for making wine, we did get to indulge in a haskap meringue pie that was pretty delectable.
Perhaps the most exciting news to share in this blog post, which we have been waiting some time for, is to share with everyone that our little farm will be growing by one! The struggle was real for Dan and I over the last couple of years, as we battled through infertility. It was a huge test on our marriage but it also brought us so much closer as a couple. It was a battle we were fighting together, each and every step of the way. We couldn’t feel more blessed to announce that our little bundle of joy will be arriving January 2020. I am a true believer now, that good things do take time, and this little babe was totally worth the wait!