Thursday, April 28, 2011

first possible kidding day!

Today is the 145th day in Lucy's pregnancy! From what I've read, average kidding for nigerians ( most goat breeds?) Is 145-155 days.

Lucy wont bee to happy. But that means she's in the kidding pen at night until I see some babes. I also wont be letting her out to browse during the day because our ' pasture' isn't fenced and I don't want her birthing out under a bush somewhere where I can't see her little self ( but a hawk overhead would be able to see juuuuuust fine to snatch up my goat grandbaby!).

Wishing my little Lu a happy easy birthing experience ( and praying its sooner rather than later and during the day instead of evening).
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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

That Darn Goat!!

I'm going to try to make this a regular Wednesday posting, if I can remember. I recently took in a full sized lamancha doe. Up until her, my personal goat experience has been nigerian dwarf goats and pygoras.
I didn't really * want * another goat, especially a full sized one, but purchased her at a low price more out of mercy for an acquaintance who could no longer care for her.

She is the wrench in my gears. The fly in my ointment. THE PAIN IN MY ARSE. My property isn't fenced. I let the other goats out and they stay put. Oh, no. Not Supermodel. She wonders....far... an encourages the rest of the herd to follow suit. Sometimes I tie her out ( I'm home all day so can watch to make sure she doesn't get caught up). When the herd is with. Her she's fine. When they move on however she screams like a crazy person. And its not a cute little bleat like my nigis. Its a loud panicky yodel.

Did I mention she's a fence jumper? My little goats Have never even tried to scale the four foot fence that makes up their pen. After a month, she decided she didn't like it in there and found my front porch much more appealing. She now resides in the Buck pen. A 16/16 chain link square. She can't get out of that ( though she does Jump on the door at feeding time making it damn near impossible to open ).

I've though about trading her for an alpine, because in my head They're smaller and therefore more manageable. Then I get terrible guilty feelings. She's very friendly and will probably be an easy milker. Then she does this criss crossy thing back and forth in front of me when I try to walk and all guilt evaporates like goat pee in the sand.

I think ' hhhmmmmm.... if I can just hold out a little longer. I can breed her and make mini manchas And then sell her!'

But with my luck, I'd just end up with Mini Supermodels, plural, Instead of just the one.
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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

the pumpkins are coming!

I have 4 pumpkin vines. Two of them have little teeny pumpkins forming. They haven't really started vining out though. The last time I did pumpkins the vines were several feet when the pumpkins started making their appearances. The vine in the picture is one I was convinced would die. Most of the leaves fell off do to a surprise frost. That's the one that is now doing the best!
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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

rest in peace my little wiggly friends

My first attempt at vermicomposting failed miserably. I was doing good for awhile. I'd turn my bin over a couple times.a month to aerate and check on everyone. I got them in December for Christmas ( yes, I asked for worms for Christmas). Things started going bad when A. I drilled small air holes in the bin and B. A added rabbit droppings with shavings. I think the nitrates were too high and the shavings absorbed too much moisture and kept drying it out.

So my vermicompost is now the start of a traditional compost pile. I've always had problems getting my compost to heat up but now living in the desert I think my problem.will be vermin and dryness. I'll try again with worms in the fall. Who knows. Maybe a couple survived and will start breeding like rabbits! Or... you know..... worms.
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Monday, April 11, 2011

gardening learning curve

Out of the original 60 or so seedlings I started about half are left and in good shape.

Most of my corn, some cucumbers and eggplants were consumed by the chickens who somehow got out of their coop. I lost some to the baaad goats. Some Just never thrived.

What's left and so far going strong are 3 of the 4 pumpkins that survived the transplant ( after my kids uprooted the 8 I had ). 3 watermelons out of 10. 6 swish Chard out of 12. The ones in the ground See doing significantly better than the ones in pots. All of the carrots are alive and well and most of the beets are gone. The tomatillos are doing fantastic, as are the bell peppers. Those make me the happiest of all because I harvested the seeds myself.

Slow and steady does it I suppose! I will make a note of which crops I did Well with and plant those again in triplicate. My main reason for wanting vegis was to cut down on livestock feed not family food. In learning to take things one day at a time. And since the desert has two growing seasons, I don't Have to wait too long before I get a second shot.
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