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Back in Business

October 23rd, 2014

YAY – we’re back in business. The internet is up and running, well, sort of. No wifi, I think the one of the devices got zapped with the lightening strike. It’s been a bit of a crazy week, no down time with not internet. For starters, I’ve been having to run down to our local library to get on the internet, so I park outside and e-mail and get work done quickly. I’ve been taking two trips down there every day. Yesterday morning when I got home I noticed the pig fence was bowled over, then I realized the pigs were out – OH NO!!!
pigs (1)
I fixed the fence and realized there was no charge. When I checked on the charger I realized it had blown up, literally – GREAT. So I quickly rerouted the pig fence so I could hook it into the charger in the chicken coop, thank goodness it was still working. Then I opened up a gate and called for the piggos. They came running and went right in, this is when training animals to a specific dinner call comes in handy! Back inside the fence I heard one of them get a few good zaps and then I went on to the chicken coop. Luckily they didn’t do much damage while they were out either, lots of walking and sniffing.
Chickens 3
Then I found a weasel had made it inside the electric fence there and had killed my favorite hen – GRRRRR. This means WAR pesky weasel!!!! Then a few minutes later the internet service guy came up the drive and got my internet partly working – YAY. At least now I’m semi back in business, no laptop work, but that’s OK. I can now work and of course most importably BLOG! and of course research how to get rid of that pesky weasel! When it rains it pours it pours, because it’s pretty much been raining the entire time this has been happening.

How has your week been?


October 19th, 2014

Last night I was down eating dinner at the neighbor’s house and a thunderstorm moved through. All of a sudden lighting struck and a spark came out of the outlet in the kitchen. Then there was no internet. After looking around the next morning they seem to think it hit a big tree and the little one room schoolhouse a little ways down the road. But that means there is no internet, so no blog posts, no photos. I’m down at the local elementary school with our neighbor BJ getting a little work done. Not sure when it will come back on, stay tuned, I’ll be back to blogging like normal when it does. At least we still have electricity!

In Print

October 18th, 2014

I sell photos to print magazines all the time along with writing a lot of articles for digital sources. While I was in Seattle I received my copies of Northern Gardener Magazine which contained an article I wrote and provided photos for.
magazine article 1
It’s rather nice to receive a paper copy of a magazine with your name it in, even though I sell articles for online sources it’s just not quite the same as seeing your name in print.
magazine article 2
This article about something I’m very passionate about: Micronutrients! If you’re interested in a great magazine about cold climate gardening check out Northern Gardener Magazine (it’s published by the Minnesota State Horticultural Society).
northern gardener magazine cover
If you subscribe you’ll notice my photos in it every so often, one of my photos even graced the cover once.

Do you have a favorite gardening magazine?

Friday Favorite: Fall Color

October 17th, 2014

Every fall I am reminded of this quote:

“Mostly what’s on my mind right now are the falls colors. I go around gaping, as if I have never seen anything like it before. Perhaps I haven’t, I’m never quite sure. I could see this display every year and not grow tired of it, like seeing the flight of geese, or hearing the bird songs in spring. I remember, and that might reduce the amazement. But I don’t remember the edge–the vividness of the spectacle.”

Bernd Heinrich (A Year In The Maine Woods)

fall leaves
fall 1
walden pond 2
I never tire of the beauty this time of year, the leaf change is one of the most remarkable things during the year. It happens at the perfect time, otherwise autumn would be a very depressing time. It won’t be long until everything is brown, but until them I’ll be soaking in all the beautiful colors as much as I can. There are lots of things to love about fall, cooler temperatures, root vegetables, winter squash, etc. What I love most is the exuberance of the leaf change, I know it’s coming every year and it still takes me by surprise, like the grand finale of a fireworks show!

What’s your favorite things about fall?

Hacking Away

October 16th, 2014

Yesterday I had some serious sinus issues going on from chopping leaves, mold will do that to you sometimes. I suppose I should really wear a mask, but then I probably wouldn’t do it, so… Anyways, since my throat was burning I didn’t want to add insult to injury and make leaf mulch again, so I tackled another much needed garden chore – hacking away the GINORMOUS burning bush that covers up the window in the kitchen.
shrub 1
This shrub is a menace – literally. Burning bushes are invasive and should be removed. If you think it isn’t a problem because you don’t see any seedling in your yard don’t be fooled, birds carry the berries far and wide. Here’s a great article about the invasiveness of this thug. This beast by the house grew like crazy because the chickens love to hang out under it, thus giving it huge doses of nitrogen. It grew about four feet this summer – craziness.
shrub (1)
I spent about fifteen minutes hacking it and hauling off the branches. We’ll get out the tractor and pull the stump. Now there’s a ton of sunlight streaming in my window in the kitchen, so much better than an invasive bush. Sure, burning bushes are pretty in the fall, but not pretty enough. A blueberry bush can be just as pretty if pruned properly and you can provide berries for yourself and the birds.
shrub 2
Back in Ohio we dealt with a lot of invasive plants on our property, we worked on getting rid of one plant the entire 10 years we lived there. Here in Maine we’re lucky that this shrub is the only one. It’s always nice to get rid of invasive plants, there’s no point in risking reducing natural habitat for beauty, especially when you can find better options.

Do you have any invasives growing on your property?

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Tropical Traditions

This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but just recently moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine.