In front of my middle finger is a goji berry flower. It had a faint purple color. This plant was bought and planted this year so I’m surprised that it is flowering after the transplant shock. It was a plant that was shipped with fruit on it but the leaves all died after planting.
And a better photo of another flower.
The plant to the rights has some holes in it from some hale.
And here is the fruit from that first flower. This is the first goji berry. Impressive to have fruit the first year. I’m considering knocking the rest of the flowers off to promote growth over fruit.
These photos were taken July 8th mostly from the farm in Watkins. The cabbage was grown in Denver).
Comfrey Bocking 4 root cuttings the spring after planting, they have really grown the past few weeks. They are over 6 inches tall at this point. Coe’s recommended letting them grow one year and then moving them. I think they recommend planting them somewhere where you can make sure they stay moist. I smile at that thought because moving them will probably still leave some roots here which will grow into plants again.
Sheet Mulched Potato Patch with Flowers. This was taken July 8th 2014 of this years potato patch. A few onions were planted with the potatoes as well. Benefits of planting these on top of cardboard is that the picking of the potatoes should be easy since they should be above the cardboard.
Cabbage Planted last year that overwintered and came back better than last year since it is bug free. The aphids really did damage to the cabbage last year. For some reason there are no aphids this year. A couple of thoughts for less aphids: the great number of lady bugs I’ve seen every where including the garden in the city, or maybe having Comfrey planted between and around the cabbage. Good bugs like comfrey like to overwinter in Comfrey so maybe that has helped as well.
2014 the year of the lady bug in Colorado. I’ve been seeing lady bugs everywhere this year. Is it all the rain we’ve had? I’ve noticed them at all three properties.
2014 Food Forest Swale with cover crops including sunflowers, common vetch and clovers. I am going to add quite a bit of straw to help cover the soil. The common vetch has purple flowers and they attracted a larger bumble bee.
Sunflower seed head before bloom July 2014. Sunflowers were planted as a productive cover crop for the new swale. The animals should enjoy them and some will surely reseed for next year.
Common Vetch with purple flowers which the bumble bee checked out.
watered when planted. 2014 has been a great year for rain. Again this week a lot of rain fell. Enough for the neighbors field to have very large ponds again.
I weeded another row of Asparagus today and noticed some with seed pods balls on them. And this plant had an orange bug which looked like a lady bug but it was solid orange.
I poked my head inside a stand of scrub oak and what did I find?
This comfrey has larger leaves and looks healthier than the comfrey in direct sunlight. I think I can make a whole lot of comfrey tea! Good reason to buy some more buckets. I’m glad this acreage has the common comfrey that spreads by seed. It is growing place I would not have planted it and thus is improving the area without labor.
Bocking 4 comfrey stems, leaves and flowers blended with a blender to speed up the time it takes to break down for a fertilizer.
The first batch of comfrey tea I started was with the leaves of common comfrey added to a bucket with water. The leaves were not chopped. It only took a few days for the smell and black water to appear.
I dug up two of my largest comfrey plants that were planted as 1 or 2 year old crowns last year. They were huge this year as in over 2 feet tall and 3 feet wide. I split each plant into two plants and cut off some of the longer and larger roots to produce more plants since that is the only way to propagate the sterile bocking 4 variety of comfrey. I cut most all of the leaves off of the plants and blended them in a blender to speed up the process of making comfrey tea fertilizer. This will be my first batch of bocking 4 comfrey tea. I started a batch of common comfrey tea a week or so ago.
The photos are of the original largest plant in the ground, then dug up, then with the roots cleaned. Between the two plants I took over 10 root cuttings which were all a bit larger than the root cuttings I bought last year.
In the ground originally
Trimmed but not separated.
Lots of roots and I bet some broke off when I dug it up.
Root cuttings from the two Bocking 4 Comfrey plants. Planted mostly horizontal.
I put half of the plant here along with 10 root cuttings near the chicken coop to catch the rain and here because we interact with the chickens often. The dirt was amended with steer manure and the dirt from the chicken area. Comfrey grows in most any soil but we want to have it thrive thus the amendments.
This weekend I weeded just over 500 feet of asparagus we planted this year. I enjoyed pulling out the young tumble weeds. They are great and appearing where I’ve disturbed the soil. I should have had a longer shirt or sunscreen. I ended up with about a 1 inch sunburn across my lower back since I weeded on my hands and knees.
I dug up two if the bocking 4 comfrey plants that I planted last year to move them to our new house. I cut away most of their stems and leaves which I will use to make comfrey tea. About a week ago I picked a lot of the common comfrey from the new house and put it in a bucket with water and it is already stinky and turning the water black. So far so good.
This year we got our first hive so we are learning a lot about bees. The top box only has the gallon of sugar water. The middle box is the box we just added. It took the bees a little less than two months to fill the first box.
The bees arrived on May 3rd. They were placed in a 10 frame hive. Their shipping container was placed in the hive rater than knocking them into the hive. I thought that was nicer for them and I didn’t want to irritate them. You could also note I was scared of them.
I they were giver sugar water as well as a bee patty. The queen was placed in her shipping g cage with a marsh mellow keeping her in place for a few days.
A week or so later I removed the shipping container and inserted the other frames. Then only their sugar water was replenished. The mix is 5 pounds of sugar in a one gallon container.
Fast forward to June 27th. The bees now have another 10 frame box on top of their original box. And it looked like they were ready for it since they had build comb on all the original frames and now were building comb on the bottom of the separator panel.
Sugar water was sprayed in the air. The bees were rather calm with the hive being open and the extra comb being scraped off.
A little bit of honey was in the comb so we had our first taste of local honey.