Yesterday was a wonderful sunshiny day. It got up to 60° in the afternoon.
We had to put the car in the shop....new heater core. So the morning was taken up with taking it and and going back to get it.
My yogurt making was not successful. I now have a half gallon of buttermilk, very tasty buttermilk. I should not have skipped that 185° step...also maybe my thermometer isn't quite accurate and it wasn't up to 110°. I won't skip the higher heat step again. It is such a simple thing to do....and I should have done it.
I made lunch of pork chops, mashed sweet potatoes, cole slaw with chunky applesauce and a cookie for dessert.
Took my rest and then went outside to start the kitchen garden cleanup. This is an area maybe 30 x 60 feet. First I cleaned the dead vines off the garden fence. I don't think I will compost the hyacinth bean vine; it is almost like limbs...I will transfer it to the brush pile by the gas tanks.
I didn't quite get finished but should be able to today. I may burn some of the piles in situ and rake the ashes around some.
The ground should be tillable by today. It was a little too wet yesterday.
Next job will be getting the tiller (beloved Merry Tiller, 1976 Scotsman)up and running and then the riding mower. The rider does not like cold weather.
I saw that huge clump of blue aster that I have been meaning to divide and relocate for several years now.........this will be the year.
I found lots of sapling trees in the fence line and in various spots....I can't even pull them up so I will have to use the loppers to get rid of them. Probably from the hated Elm tree.
I need to hoe the weeds from the sides of the garlic row. It is looking very good.
I saw some things just beginning to break dormancy: Clematis, mums, and the plum tree is almost showing color. The poor little plum that lays on its side always blooms so early....I rarely get anything from it. I think last year was the first time I got enough to make plum preserves.
I need to prune some broken branches from the peach and cherry tree and cut some suckers from the apple tree.
I haven't firmed up plans for planting this garden quite yet. I do know I will do the early spring things here. Peas, lettuce, radishes, onions, spinach, etc.
I will also plant some herbs here to be close to the kitchen.
I have been tossing henbit over the fence to the chickens and they love it. I just got 3 eggs yesterday.
Alas, this birdhouse is no more. Some days ago I saw it laying on the ground....I thought we could just put it back up but DH said it was beyond repair.
I will be looking for a wooden one. We just had Martins use it one year but each spring I would clean it out hoping. I love those birds.
Random Bird Picture:
A Black Capped Chickadee in morning sun.