Thursday, June 2, 2011

Taking a Break - Poppy Time- Dried Willow

As you may have noticed I haven't blogged for a few days.

We had company over Memorial Day weekend and that means everything else goes by the wayside!

The weather has been extremely hot and humid but the daily rains have stopped.
I am behind with everything....except reading.

I have now allowed my sweet mate the job of mowing and he is doing a good job. I may have to teach him trimming next.

I am much better now and the first thing I did after company left was to till the Kitchen Garden. That will be the last time because I planted things much closer this year so that I could get everything in this garden. I wasn't able to till the new garden out back where the orchard is. I hate it, but just have to accept it.

We have been sitting around in the mornings and not going out until 8 AM.....a very bad mistake in this kind of weather. It is daylight by 6 AM....I went out yesterday at 6:30 and it was a lovely morning for work. I planted the hoopframe with my favorite Kwintus pole beans. I hoed out some places the tiller couldn't reach.

I also drug out the greenhouse shade cloth and draped it over the smaller frame where I have the lettuces. They were going to cook in this heat. I hope it helps.

I still have more plants to get in the ground and hope I can get that done this morning.

I was inside by 10 AM before it got too hot around 11 AM. We made a run to the feed store for chicken feed and that was it for chores for the day.

Milk Cow

Willow was due to be dried by May 29 but because of my hips, I decided I would dry her early and did.
There was no magic involved. We just turned her out to pasture and I quit milking.
We also don't let the calf nurse. She never missed a beat; didn't even bawl.
We will not feed her grain during this time either.

When we were milking, the routine was a little more involved. First,a Holstein gives a lot more milk and she may still be milking pretty heavy when it is time to dry her. If a cow is not giving over 40 pounds a day, you just stop milking with no gradual tapering off, if she is giving more you might have to milk her less often for a few days first.....however, we never did that either. You then sanitize her teat ends and insert a dry-cow antibiotic into each teat canal. This is to prevent or cure any resident mastitis bacteria in her udder. Often we would worm them at dry-off. We skip all those steps now. Willow has never had mastitis and I am keeping her in a more organic, natural way. She is a very healthy cow. We did worm her when we first bought her.

I do miss her milk and am forcing myself to drink store milk now! Silly, I know.


The poppies are blooming at last. I think I enjoy them more than any other flowers because each day there is a surprise shape, color and location. They are all papaver somniferums. I started with one planting of 'Lauren's Grape' and a pink double and this is what I have so far this year:

From Poppies 2011

and finally one that has reverted back to Lauren's Grape


  1. Your poppies are beautiful. They were one of my mom's favorite flowers.

  2. Glenda ~ Sorry your hips are bothering you. It sounds like you are still busy and your poppies are wonderful. Glad to hear that Willow is a healthy cow. When will you start milking again?

    Have a great day and don't work too long in the heat.

    Hugs ~ FlowerLady

  3. We had mid-90s Mon & Tue, then 80s with humidity in the teens(!) and high winds from every quarter yesterday (Wednesday). I had to water the pots & greens every couple of hours due to the desiccating wind. Today high is supposed to be only 60s, then tomorrow night down into the 40s. I hope my kales are tough enough to handle such extremes. (I wonder if *I* am? ;-D)

    Interesting how to dry a cow. Guess there's not any real 'magic' the way you do it. (Unless it's that Willow is a magic cow? LOL)

    Love the poppies. Much nicer than the old bright orange/red bread poppies I used to have. They were NOT my faves...

    Glad the hip is feeling better. :-D

  4. Love the pretty poppies.

    Just knew when it quit raining it would turn off hot-we don't have much spring anymore. Haying is on the menu here and is so heavy it is hard to get dry enough to bale.

    I weeded and spread a load of mulch this morning-trying to cool off before I hit the shower-think I almost got to hot. I just couldn't find a good stopping place!!

    Take care.........

  5. Those poppies are incredible...they are going on my list for next year.

  6. Your poppies are the prettiest I've seen. Remind me to plant perilla with mine for next year. I guess that dark purple is perilla or purple basil? Not everything that blooms together in your garden blooms together in mine. Poppies are all gone here weeks ago except for some stray Corn poppies and a few California natives.

    I typed out a long comment on your post that follows this one. Google ate it. It keeps asking me to sign in over and over. I was mostly babbling about corn, after I admired your long views.

  7. Your poppies are so pretty. I especially like the one that is light pink with the lavender center (second from the bottom). I've never seen such a lovely flower.