I’ve been semi-absent recently, haven’t I?  Blame the garden and the livestock.  While I’m mostly not doing too much in the livestock arena, I have been busily planting a variety of seeds.  Peas, of course, an heirloom varieity called “De Grace” that is a prolific snowpea and very decent thin-skinned sugar snap pea.  If I get around to dragging the camera out, I’ll do a post on weaving a trellis for peas from branches. Spinach (“Bloomdale”) went in as well and a few plants are up, although I’d like to see more, so I planted a second row.  The turnips are puttering along quite nicely, in need of thinning.  Curly upland cress is looking good, and I can happily say the first potato shoots popped up last week (plain ol’ Yukon Gold).  Mom’s planting 55 strawberry plants 4 at a time, and the pecan trees have leaves!  Quite a variety already.

My spring cover crop, buckwheat, may have not survived a couple of cold snaps as there’s not a plant to be found.  On the other hand, there don’t seem to be an excess of weeds.  The blood sorrel is also still AWOL but it may need to warm up a little more for it. Seedlings aren’t an area I tend to be too enthusiatic in (the cat ate them, then I had a bad damping off experience, and ever since then, I’ve been more inclined to plant in the ground), but I am trying to grow some celeriac seedlings.  I may set out a tray of basil too, and I actually bought a rosemary plant that I *will* keep alive.

Part of the fun of planting in contemplating what comes next.  I have exotic potatoes galore (purple “Midnight Beauty”, blue ones, red ones, a German fingerling, and a white one), beans in several colors, squash, more greens, and a neighbor’s favorite popcorn.  The neighbor, an character who has served his country and lived an interesting life, declares that store bought eggs and store bought popcorn are both worthless.  His popcorn is worth enjoying, and he occasionally shares the eggs.

The livestock are generally doing well.  Turns out goats love carrots– don’t wander into the barnyard eating carrot sticks unless you were planning to share– and are pretty happy to eat broccoli stems. The chickens are producing more than enough eggs for us, so we can bribe the neighbors to ignore the oh-so vocal goats. I’ve started doing a tiny bit of milking and will be on milking duty this weekend: wish us both luck.