Author: denisemor

Pushing my Luck?

Been a nice few days here, with spring-y temps and lots of opportunities for working in the garden.

Seedlings continue to make progress, and I just started another wave today -squashes, melons, cukes, sunflowers.

You might remember that back in October, I took cuttings from a few tomatoes to root and overwinter. I’ve managed to keep those guys going, and they’d become a bit unwieldy of late- so I decided to take a chance and put them in the ground (in the hoophouse)

I’ve got Sunrise Bumblebee, Pink German and Blush trellised, and Purple Cherokee in a cage. Here’s hoping we don’t get a hard freeze going forward!

Also put snap peas in the ground, and strung up a trellis for them made of apple whips.

Little red fence around them is to keep Yellow Chig from mowing them down. 🙂

And scallions and broccoli are getting settled in the first two stages of the Greenstalk planter

Won’t be long now ’til I’m shearing the sheeps! Most fleeces look pretty promising, tho I’m not sure what is going on with Fiona. Her wool is kind of short and seems to be somewhat felted, like a spongy mat across her back. Guess I’ll see once I get into it.

I hadn’t yet done anything with her fall fleece (which was quite nice), and so made a start on that the other day- once batch washed, dried and carded-

That’s her taupe-y fluff in the front. Not quite sure how I’m going to spin it yet. Will have to do a bit of sampling.

And on the knitting front I’ve been continuing to Brioche- enjoying the interplay of the colors and the cushiness of the fabric. Brioche has a nice easy rhythm to it, and is very satisfying at this gauge.

Alrighty folks, That’s all I’ve got. Have a good week 🙂

Spring, Not Spring

Just the way things go this time of year.

The seeds and seedlings are on heat mats, so they are riding out the chill just fine. It’s only me that is anxious.

Broccoli, peas and various onions coming along nicely

And most everything in the second wave is popped as well. Dye plants, tomatoes, eggplants all underway- Peppers taking a bit longer, but I kind of expected that.

Despite the rain and chill, I got some more compost hauled, and the raspberry canes thinned (tho not tied up yet), so felt that I’d met my garden productivity quota for the weekend 🙂

And I’m feeling good about having something back on the needles- a little brioche featuring the fun little multicolor chain ply skeins I spun up a few weeks back

I think that Esther’s creamy white really sets off the multicolor blends nicely.

I took a guess at the gauge and cast on 66 stitches, figuring that would get me in the ballpark of a hat or cowl, as brioche is pretty stretchy.

And it’s a good fit! Light and lofty, comfy and and cozy. (for future reference- knit 6 inches of two color brioche in the round, then crown shaping in three parts, brioche (double) decrease every other knit round.)

Have a good week everyone-

Motorized by The Man, redux

Longtime readers of the blog might remember the original run at motorizing my Pat Green drum carder .

That worked for a while, but then I started to experience slippage due to the belts stretching, and at some point I went back to hand cranking. The hand cranking isn’t bad, but because of the forces of the hand cranking on the machine, it does require that the carder be clamped to the surface it sits on, to prevent it shifting around. And the spot I like to work in isn’t ideal for that. So it seemed like a good time to revisit the motor-driven idea.

And thankfully we still had the assembly hanging around in the shed. So The Man recently turned his attention to the issue, and arrived at an improved arrangement of the components.

Neat, eh? The one last bit will be to put a protective shield around the belts. But it’s up and running- and doing an excellent job. 🙂 More photos:

In other news, I finally tackled pruning Big Apple (couple hard-to-reach branches will need to be managed with the pole saw, but checking it off my list!)

It is actually pretty cool being up in the top of the apple tree. It’s its own little world up there- thick with moss, lichens, ferns. I meant to get a photo while I had the ladder out, but forgot- so here is what I can share from ground level.

Also came across a robin next from last year

I can see why birds love this tree. So many good spots, so much good nesting material.

And seed are starting to take off! The earliest guys (peas, broccoli, onions) are looking good

And I’m just starting to get some germination on the second wave that was sown last weekend (tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, dye plants)

It was a beautiful day today- and got so warm in the hoophouse that I rolled up the west side a bit. (first time this year).

The forecast is suggesting that perhaps we’ve turned the corner and are headed for spring. I sure hope that is true.

Longing for Spring

This is always a tough time of year. It often feels like we’re coming out of winter, and then this happens

It’s actually warming up some now, but it was a very wintery week, with some days not even getting above freezing. I knew it was coming, but decided to start some seed last weekend anyway, putting them on heat mats and hoping for the best.

Remains to be seen if the onions and peas are still viable, but I was so excited to see some brave, hardy little broccolis poking their heads up this morning!

And it looks like some precocious poppies might have made it through as well.

I think that this afternoon I will get some tomato, pepper and eggplant seeds sown. The forecast for the coming week is looking a little more moderate.

I did manage to get my sunshiny batts spun up yesterday, and So here is how the violet heather and the buttery yellow multi look side by side

So springy. It actually just occurred to me that I am kind of recreating some of my favorite roses in wool

To wit-

Anyway, so now we know where that impulse came from!

And I wanted to share a neat little book that I received as a gift from Donna over at Schoonover Farm

It’s a series of letters written between twin sisters, Nora and Flora Johnston, written in 1918, in the midst of the Spanish Flu epidemic. Very interesting piece of local history that really beings to life the cast of characters that populated this area about 100 years ago. No specific reference to the Canavans, who would have been the occupants of our house at that time, tho she does mention a “Nell” which could be Nell Canavan. Also McMackins (original land patent owners of our property) come up a couple times, but not specific people, just a reference their home/property. Kind of makes me want to followup on some of the lines of inquiry I left dangling years ago. Some of the folks that I’d corresponded with back then have since passed on, but there are some historical organizations that I could reach out to.

Have a good week everyone-