As the days grow shorter and colder (well, sometime soon I’m hoping), time in the garden is cut down to just a few hours a week.
By the time I get home from work the sun is setting. Depressing.
The past few weeks have been busy around here. Two weeks ago we were getting things ready to go for Thanksgiving dinner. Last week the kids were sick. Plus I really didn’t have anything of value to post, so I figured best not to post anything at all.
December is really the slowest month in the garden. A time for things to rest and recuperate. The leaves have fallen off my neighbors trees and have made a semi blanket over things until spring. The seed catalogs have started to come in and I’ve been taking in all the beautiful things that would be great to grow.
Speaking of growing, I’ve been doing some reading on growing wheat and sugar beets. The sugar beets would be experimental. Though our ancestors grew them and did just fine. The process to render the sugar out of the beets is intriguing, but its the months and months after that which seem to make this experiment seem fun. Kind of like letting honey sit for 9-12 months. The wheat on the other hand seems very feasible. I’d have to lengthen the area on the south side of the house so as to grow enough to make the project worth it (we’re talking 25+ pounds of grain or more). I’ve found heirloom/open pollinated varieties of both and will order soon.
One of my goals from gardening was to try and make a complete meal that also nourishes the body. This past summer I was able to grow enough dry beans to make a small pot of them. Add in some canned tomatoes and a few herbs and we are getting close (waiting on the cilantro to grow). But if I were able to grow and harvest wheat and then eventually have sugar I’ve harvested myself I would feel better about the complete meal (With two kids and a wife, a pot of beans wouldn’t cut it).
The neighbors I talked about awhile ago that had acquired chickens are making my envious. Just yesterday I visited one of the then and their hens. Each hen is laying an egg a day. I keep trying to talk myself out of bringing on more responsibility with animals, but add a few hens to the back yard, mix in that wheat and sugar I was talking about and…HELLO, can you say homegrown CAKE??!
Oh and eventually making my own pectin. *Note to self: Get an apple tree. Something of the green variety.*
It’s all about getting to that 100 ft diet.
So in closing, as the title suggests, it’s time to rest and replenish. Come Sunday we are expecting a big front to come through with a high of 45 degrees, time to hunker down for the winter. Have a merry Christmas and a wonderful New Year. I will see you in 7 weeks. January 23rd to be exact. Onion planting season is around the corner (which we still have a healthy stock of from last May.)