Tuesday, April 19, 2016

In the garden - and raising kids on the homestead

I wrote a story for "Free Range Child", which is part of a wonderful movement called "Overgrow the System". Their vision: "to create an effective and compelling platform that can empower and activate people across social spectrums, while also addressing the real issues and challenges that the world faces today. A platform that can inspire people to reclaim their freedom and their power from the cultural mechanisms of control and complacency in order to live more in balance with the cycles and systems of the natural world."

I love that vision, and I love that they recruited me to write for them. You can read my piece here.

It totally ties in with this blog post today: how the kids help us with everything on the homestead, and this week, we planted our garden. I'm so happy with how it looks.





In my article for "Free Range Child" I told a story about how my kids help us on the homestead, so I won't expand on it here.  Let me just say: these children know how to work!  They helped me dig the garden with a broad fork, plant potatoes and transplant brassicas.  

It warms my heart to see them work beside me.  They know where their food comes from, and they know it takes effort to plant and nurture it before they can eat it.

But by Golly, we shall have potatoes for hash browns, and this prospect alone will motivate my oldest son to sweat over digging the potato trench!






I'm especially impressed with Eva.  She's only six, but she's trailing me around in the garden.

"Can I help you, Mama?"

Why, yes, she certainly can.  She loves watering, of course (what child doesn't love playing with water?), but she also willingly hoes, weeds and transplants.  Here is some mighty happy lettuce, nurtured by her little hands.












We've been eating from the garden quite a bit lately: asparagus, overwintered kale, collards and leeks, chives, and bamboo shoots (I will write a how-to tutorial on how to prepare them later).

Kai is helping Steve build a new chicken tractor.  The old one has been around for a decade and is getting tired (I mean the chicken tractor, not Steve).

I gotta feed all these busy helpers, so I made some killer cornbread that disappeared in about two minutes.





I will leave you with photos of things that are blooming in our yard.  There's lots blooming, and the mason bees are happy.

What's blooming in your neck of the woods?











11 comments:

  1. What's blooming? Everything! And it's still blooming even though we had a 90 degree day yesterday and it's supposed to be 90 today. Fortunately, it's supposed to go back down and be in the perfect range for the next 10 days so I can get a lot done comfortably! I tested my soil the kitchen table way and it's - check this out - 50% sand, 25% silt and 25% clay. (I wrote about it for Capper's). So doesn't that sound perfect for potatoes? I planted some in a relatively shady spot because they're not going to like the heat. I had some store bought ones that sprouted and I didn't want them to go to waste. Now I'm going to send a sample away to be tested for pH and mineral content. I was inspired by the Hewitt's (and Ron) to start my garden right. I have the means to do it so that's what I'm going to do. Love your beautiful pictures!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Renee, I really would love to know how it goes for you with mineralizing the garden. I read about it in Ben's book and loved the idea.

      Delete
    2. I will let you know. My next step is to send a sample away for mineral content. Have you ever done a sedimentation test? What do you have? One odd thing about our soil is that it does not drain well which flies in the face of logic with all that sand. I'm trying to make friends with local farmers. They must know why. I'm guessing that there is a layer of hard pan not very far from the surface but deeper than a spade or fork depth.

      Delete
  2. Beautiful article Corina. Your children are amazing!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Marsh Marigolds and Mountain Bluebells have started popping open around here even though we have a good bit of snow still on the ground. When summer isn't all that long there is an immediacy to everything! Enjoy, Jennifer

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Snow on the ground! That's so hard to believe, since we're in our bathing suits! Glad that you have flowers popping out now!

      Delete
  4. Love the pictures! It's so lush and green and colorful...and I bet is smells heavenly, too. I'm on the complete other side of the country in Central Maine and we're only JUST starting to see signs of spring (daffodils and apple buds). My step daughter and I just started our seedlings and with 30 degree weather at night, we won't be able to get the new chicks from the basement to the coop until next month! Thank you for posting such beauty from your neck of the woods :^)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tiffany, I have been feeling guilty posting all my lush, green pictures and photos of us swimming at the river, thinking of you guys on the other side of the country being so snowed in! I'm glad that you are finally seeing some signs of spring!

      Delete
  5. Oh Corina, your blog inspires me so!!!! I have been a long time gardener but only recently have been trying to grow enough food to actually keep my family fed through the Winter's also. I am retired now and have much more time at home to dedicate to the garden and all the extra amounts of food I want to harvest and put up. It is mostly just my husband and I at home, but when any of my 4 grown sons are here, I love having plenty of homegrown goodness to fill them up on and send back home with them :) We are in Virginia and just got some much needed, lovely rain yesterday and today. I am itching to get much more planted in the ground but am leery of our last frost date, which is May 17th. So glad that you were featured on Women Who Farm as it introduced me to that wonderful organization and I have loved reading their stories and watching the videos!!!! More awesome and inspiring women, like you :) So looking forward to watching and reading as your garden grows!!! Happy planting and harvesting :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Debbie,
      Thanks so much for your kind words! Happy planting and harvesting to you!!!

      Delete

Become a patron!!!

If you like our blog, please become a patron. What the heck does that mean? As a patron, you give us as little as $1 a month (or as much as $20 a month) to show your support and get exclusive, patron-only content from us. You will get tutorials, recipes, inspiration, and support from us, the homesteading, wilderness and homeschooling experts! You can cancel anytime!

https://www.patreon.com/Marblemounthomestead

Popular Posts