Sunday, November 15, 2009

Trading my bunnies

I just recently traded a breeding pair of bunnies with another urban farmer (Esperanza Pallana)in the area. She has already developed a wonderful urban farm that included tasty fruits and vegetables, chickens, bees and now wanted to start rabbit raising.
She gave me a delicious assortment of fruits and homemade items. Figs, lemons, squash, persimmons, jelly's and a warm spicy wine that was great. I ate the figs immediately and turned the lemons into lemonade. The squash will be for tonight's dinner and the persimmons I hope to make into cookies and bread this afternoon. I received another bag of persimmons from a friend so now I have plenty for jam too.
Here is Esperanza's Blog. You can find recipes for the wine and jams on her site.
Pluck and Feather

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle

I just finished reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver. It was an inspirational book that has me thinking and planning for the summer months. I have many different projects planned for my little home.

The garden is a must do this year. I have a few sights in the front and back yard that will work wonderfully for a garden this next year. The problem is I have killed just about everything I have tried to grow. I am amazed that I can keep children and a whole zoo full of animals happy and healthy but give me a green thing and it will be dead in weeks. Of course plants don't say "I'm hungry!!" in that whinny voice when your stuck in bumper to bumper traffic and it will take at least 15 minutes to get to the next off ramp. So that could be my problem. Maybe if the plants said something before shriveling up into unrecognizable dried material I would remember to water them.

I am still growing 3 healthy tomatoes. We have not had really cold weather yet and I am hoping that I will get a few more tomatoes before frost hits. The other option is to make my own cold frame and attempt some winter gardening. Seems like a lot of work to fight nature and my inability to garden at the same time but I am never one to back down from a good fight.

I am very happy with my guinea pig project. We are slowly moving to feeding our piggies 100% fresh and organic foods. No more processed pet store stuff for us. I am watching their weight as I make this transition. They have seemed to love all green leaves like lettuce, carrot tops, and really love root crops and stems. Broccoli stems are a favorite but not the florets. Carrots, squash, and zucchini are big yes. They do not like peanuts, or anything spicy like onions or garlic. By the end of this month they will be completely processed food free. One small step in become self sufficient. It's just a little step but if i can do that with the animals foods first while changing our families eating habits at the same time we should be totally self sufficient with our food in a year or two except for things like sugar, wheat, beef and wine. We will be only getting organic and local which is a new thing since reading the Kingsolver book.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Though most people think these masked animals are top on the cute and cuddly list I am here to tell you that they are the most evil and beastly of animals. Over the last few weeks I have had the pleasure of multiple nighttime encounters. Can you imagine being woken up in the middle of the night by the most terrible of sounds. The sound of an innocent animal being hunted and eaten in the middle of the night. In my bed clothes I grab a flash light running out into the yard, barefoot and sleepy. I found not just one evil Raccoon making a midnight snack of my chickens but 4 yes 4 of these things as large as a dog feasting in my backyard.

Do you think they ran for the hills when caught in their despicable act. NO. They looked at me and hissed asking "What are you going to do about"

The best I could do barefoot and in my skimpys was grab the hose and spray them with a good blast, but we are not talking firehose power here. They ran away but just out of reach from the hose. There was no saving my poor chickens and the back yard looked like an early snow had fallen in the moonlight.

It is all out war here at Blue Rivers Urban Farm and I have to admit that the Raccoons are winning. Though I do kill and process my chickens and rabbits to eat, I have a hard time killing a wild animal for no other reason than wanting it dead. So to count:

Raccoons 2 chickens, 4 rabbits

Me 0.

I have done nothing but teach them that when the light comes on in the bed room window they should take their dinner out. I also believe that they are secretly planning a full take over of the house by crushing it with a large Walnut tree but that will be my next blog.