It did finally rain which saved a lot. The bugs are so bad, we have 5 Japanese beetle traps that we empty every day. The smell is horrendous. The smell from the dead flies in the $300 fly trap for the cows is bad too, but it’s working. It’s caught bugs I’ve never seen b4, and never want to again. The flies it catches are HUGE. I need to get a picture for you…eww. Here’s one day’s worth of beetles. We usually get more though as this was taken when we only had 2-3 traps going. The bottom part is water, now it’s completely filled with bugs. We throw it in the burn barrel the next day before we empty the traps again, and try to burn them as often as possible to reduce the smell.
I harvested what the worms left us with the cabbage. It was pitiful, but it was something. I harvested the rest of the beets and did well.
I’m saving about 3 plants of the bush beans for seed. Now, the pole beans are what got eaten by the beetles. Here is a picture of the damage so far.
In fact, I think these are the flat type of green bean, so I may not grow them next year anyway. However, the bush (golden/yellow wax) are doing well.
Thanks be to dad’s friend Dawn for helping me know when to harvest, and Ana’s friend Shannon for introducing me to the bean in the first place.
The cows are progressing nicely. Betsy came to me yesterday and I didn’t have any grain for her! Arlis got her to go into the barn twice with feed. We bought a bull. Registered red polled. Bulls are hard to find to begin with, and we didn’t really want to go the registered route, but it appears as though we may have enough room for more than enough beef/dairy, so we may sell some in the future and registered (as we have so far been told) sell better. Dexters are red and dun too, and polled means he doesn’t have horns. In fact, that is the dominant gene, and both his parents were polled, so it’s possible he’s double polled which means all calved from him will be polled (without horns). We have decided to keep one cow as a dairy, and just have the rest around for production. I just got off the phone with the slaughter house (we were going to do it ourselves, but cows are big, even Dexters weighing in at several hundred pounds, and there are just the two of us, a rope and two trees, so we are considering other options. That being said, it is $24 kill fee and $.25 (what ever happened to the “cent” sign?) per hoof pound. Now, you got about half your weight, and they will save the horns and skin for me so…that comes to… $.50 per pound plus kill fee plus pickup/delivery (we need to get a cattle trailer) for NO HORMONE, PASTURE FED “ORGANIC” BEEF!!! I am NOT complaining…but I still need to talk to Arlis about it.
We tested one row of potatoes and we have 5.5 rows total. Here is about what we got from one row (don’t forget that we’ve been harvesting here and there as needed)
Twenty-five pounds per row, we bought 50 pounds, so that’s…over 75 pounds net gain. And, we think we can get another crop, I have some sprouting in the sun and will manure the furrow we just made with the plow and plant that row over again to see what happens. If we’re able to, then next year we can have two crops of potatoes and maybe sell some!! Anyone interested in poison free red potatoes??? I will admit, we used seven dust on the pole beans, but it was absolutely necessary. Arlis dusted them until you can barely see the leaves, and I’m not sure how I feel about eating the beans off of them that have dust on them, because there are some immature beans on there now.
All in all, the bull will be here in a few days, we’ve started our fall peas, carrots, and beets, and I just have to keep telling myself to be patient, you can’t do it all in one day so quit trying. We bought a hay rake and bailer and are looking at a sickle mower. We can cut on halves (that means you cut someone’s hay and rake it and bail if for them, and you get to keep half of what you bail), and since it’s a square bailer, we will be in high demand if we ever want to sell as square bails are getting more and more rare.