Tuesday, June 3, 2014

June Green

I think that this may be my very favorite time of year; the warm green days of June with the majority of summer, heat and garden bounty to look forward to. The leaves on the Birch trees and the green plants covering the forest floor are my favorite shade of green, lush and bright. We have had three overcast days of scattered showers. When I awoke this morning fog surrounded the house. I love fog. We get it so rarely, that whenever we do it reminds me of vacationing to the Oregon and Maine coasts when I was young. Now the ground is moist and spongy. The air is sweet and clean. The sun is filtering through the trees and shining on the wet glossy Birch leaves.

On Saturday we had our first thunderstorm and good rain of the year. The kids and I were so excited when we heard the first thunder. I have written before of our love of Patricia Polacco's Thundercake, and our desire to make our own Thundercake. Last summer we did not have a single thunderstorm -and we were looking forward to one so that we could make a Thundercake. So going into this summer I promised the kids again that if we heard thunder we would drop everything we were doing and make a Thundercake, and so we did. Of course, our thunderstorms tend to come and go within about fifteen minutes, but we were able to get started while there was thunder, and the afternoon remained stormy. We changed out the recipe and made a gluten free chocolate cake out of Against All Grain that was very good and moist. Unfortunately I attempted to make a Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream for the frosting, and we lost power before we'd incorporated all the butter. So no matter how much Noah and I attempted to hand whisk the frosting it never had the right texture. Never the less, we enjoyed it thoroughly. We got power back late that night.

With the exception of fierce winds on Saturday, the last couple days of cool rain have been wonderful for the garden. Some years we don't get any cool rainy days until July, so all the tender starts just struggle to stay alive through our hot sunny June months and then take off mid summer. The garden is planted. turnips, peas, carrots, greens and beets are coming up. Brassicas, squash, tomatoes, cucumbers and all the other heat loving starts are in. I've got a few blank spots for direct seeding cilantro, basil and another batch of greens. We downsized on garden space this year as we took out a few rows to make a flat grassy play spot for the kids. So I ended up starting more than I had room for. I was planning on tilling an old goat pen and planting corn in the fertile space, but we have two geese in the space right now and I'm not sure if they'll get moved out in time.

We moved the coop of our youngest layers into a moveable hoop house so we could have more nutritious eggs. Now our lower chicken coop is available for the turkeys and Cornish that are in the hallway and desperately need to move out of the house. Over the next couple weeks we'll be shuffling birds into appropriately sized summer homes, and cleaning out the goat barn before it will be time to start weeding daily. Dustin is going to install drip irrigation in the garden which should save me an hour or two daily of watering. I'm looking forward to having more time for my children and for doing fun summer activities together.

Here's to enjoying the lush green days of summer!