Friday, January 16, 2009

the last week in brief

hello. i've been away for the past week up north with no internet access being (as one friend so eloquently put it) a farm slut. since i have been unable to write of my agricultural adventures i will now provide a synopsis of my last five days...
Monday: planted 240 baby corn seedlings (a minimum number for proper genetic variety) saved from last years crop, and gathered three large grain sacks of shallots.
Tuesday: cleared the accumulated brush, brambles and taller-than-me wild grasses which had grown in the last six months around the small trees planted at the edge of the property to provide shelter from the wind.
Wednesday: sorted four varieties of dried beans and planted them in 30 seedling trays (with 60 beans to a tray), then (after being rescued by a post-lunch rain, i canned peaches. till it was dark.
Thursday: garlic. sorted by size, grade and weight, then bundled by 20,30 and 50 depending on size and hung from the ceiling of the hay barn to dry. my hands still smell vaguely garlic-y. i also assisted in chasing a runaway cow. two weeks away from giving birth to her fifth calf she jumped the fence of her paddock and decided to go for a ramp through the vegetable patch, eating all of the beetroots and some of the fennel, before running wild through the neighbors hay field. it easily took a half an hour to direct her back towards her field as lulu, as she is know, is a cow with a major attitude.
Friday: went to visit the bees and adjust one of their homes, giving them more room for all of their honey. had to be fully suited up in a giant white suit with gloves and a zip-on mesh fronted hood to protect from stinging. after lunch i put on dugeree's (overalls) and gumboots (rubberboots) and did some liquid feeding in the vegetable garden. this involved filling buckets with a mixture of seaweed, cowdung and five year old eel bits, and toping it up with water, then walking up and down the rows with a watering can, bent double, pouring the ridiculously pungent liquid over every single plant. and then showering. twice.
and now i have returned to auckland and all of it's dubious pleasures for the weekend, followed by a twelve hour bus ride to wellington and then a three hour ferry across cook straight to picton on monday. oh i do so love the bus...

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