Spring is on its way and we are really excited because this is our first spring in our home! As of now, we are focusing on getting ready for spring and maintaining what we have begun.
Our stone fruit trees bloom the most lovely pink blooms. The old owners had planted both of these and I believe they said one is a peach and one is a nectarine. The neighbors claim they produced amazing last year so we trimmed them in February and have a our fingers crossed. One is just covered in blooms and the other has already lost its blooms and replaced them with leaves. We even have tiny baby fruit already. My research project for this week will be to learn about thinning the fruit out.
Our garden has been the main focus of building our homestead this far but regardless it is sparse coming out of winter. Our back bed is still being over wintered with a tarp or two in hopes of killing the Johnson grass that somehow still found its way in. We have been harvesting lots of radishes though! We just harvested a ton and still have so many left that are still maturing. Lettuce and mesclun are also sprouting in between. A few carrots are sneaking in too. Lettuce is surface rooted so it doesn’t bother root veggies. You can also plant radishes and carrots together as carrots mature in twice the time of radishes so they radishes grow first and soften the soil for the carrots after you harvest.
We found some old coffee beans and instead of composting them we decided to do an experiment and spread them around some of the radishes and so far it is a success. The kids are also excited because dandelions are finally showing up! I have been encouraging them to leave plenty for the bees since the bees really need them this time of year. With the blooms on the fruit tree and wildflowers blooming early this year in nearby fields, we will be able to start harvesting them soon in good conscience. I may share some of the ways we use dandelions soon!
We rescued some old sprouting potatoes as well (rescue meaning taking the ones that sprouted in my pantry, chop them into bits with two sprouts each and plant them). The kids have a scatter and experiment garden that is now full of growing potatoes. We also went ahead and added in turnips and beans. We are on a bit of a holding period for much else since Texas often has a random frost around this time. Special note: we took some research from our local agricultural college (Texas A&M) for cultivars that grow best in Texas. Watch for this as chain nurseries and big box places don’t often have the seeds you need.
Inside I do have heirloom tomatoes started along with the basil, mint, micro greens and aloe that I always have going. I also have a goldenrod tincture and nettle tincture “brewing” from herbs I foraged and dried last year. I will share more on that next time along with maybe a list of our next seed order! That is really all I have for now!