Thursday, January 29, 2015

*deep breath*

I know I am a month late, but we finally had the last of our family over for the holidays. It was so wonderful to see all of them, and I love having family in the house, but now we start looking to remove the Christmas decorations. I am sure the neighbors love still seeing the Christmas lights and decorations in the yard, hopefully they will be down by Feb.

Pooka had a nice little garden haul again this year. I know Santa brought her some seeds as well as we got her a few seeds for her birthday. Santa brought her some new watermelon seeds, purple cauliflower, some new sweet peppers and ground cherries. I think Santa decided to try outside the box to see what Pooka would think. We on the other hand got her some sparkle violet pepper seeds, some black and white flowers she had asked for, and a few new herbs to try.

Her new canning apron
One of Pooka's aunts made this for her for her birthday. Her own customized canning apron. Pooka loved it and has asked when we will be canning next. She loves wearing apron's to help cook, Aunt J is very talented, and I have loved her work for years. This one just screamed Pooka. I am glad someone can help a Pooka with her more artistic side. Aunt J also gave Pooka a new aloe plant that was divided of Aunt J's one that she has had for years. Pooka has since declared the old one mine and she has her own now.

Stuff for in the garden
Pooka also recieved a craft kit of things she could make for the garden including bird houses (that i am sure will be fairy houses), a bird feeder and a wind chime. I see a day outside building and a couple more painting. Pooka was always a hands on girl. Add to that her love of Plants vs. Zombies. Now this may seem rather random for her, but we are a tad off group, and she loves watching plants do things to kill the zombies, so when I saw a peashooter lawn ornament, I knew it had to go in her garden somewhere.
Pooka got a more scientific looking root viewer this year. However, the bigger suprise here is that Pooka got a banana plant. You read that right, a banana plant. I will admit, I got nervous when her friend K's mom texted me and said "Please don't be mad at what the kids picked out. It said why grown normal when you can grow the exotic. My kids says if it works, they want one too" That made me nervous for about 30 seconds and then I decided they knew a Pooka well. The thing promises to grow huge in like 3 months, so we are waiting just a bit to start this one so it can move outside quickly. I don't know if it is suppose to live more than one year, but it is probably going into a pot for now.
More plants
Pooka finally got her first hydroponic set from her grandparents this year. I will admit we are all starting to look at it with a "We should start that for salads". Add to it the little fairy garden I can see her doing and keeping in her room, especially with the multi-colored rocks.
Dragon Plant
Pooka's Aunt B gave her a drgaon plant to grow. The leaves are going to be black, and Pooka's first comment was "I get to grow dragons,." We told her we doubt it, but more than one of her aunts or uncles said "If anyone could do it, it would be that one." Although Daddy has said she can only get a dragon if it breathes fire or ice and flies, so no petco lizard dragons for her.

Root beer
The last thing Pooka got that I want to share is that she got her own root beer brewing kit. She is so excited to try this one, but I told her its a Daddy-Pooka project since Daddy got a beer brewing kit. This should be a good thing for the two of them to do together, and Pooka loves root beer thanks to her grandmother, so at least this way I will know what is in it, and really Pooka loves making everything herself, from weaving herself some hand warmers to brewing root beer. I swear that child would be happy if we moved to the middle of nowhere, got some critters and never went into the real world again. No we would have to go back in the world, we need to go to the book store, someone has her mothers love of books.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Almost gone

Over the summer, we harvested the garlic. And the garlic was good. Daddy said more than once we would never need to buy garlic again. I laughed at him and Pooka wanted to see what other colors we could grow. All told, we pulled in 102 bulbs of garlic weighing in at 121.5 oz. Not a bad haul considering our investment. Our garage smelled of garlic for months as it hung out their drying.
The largest garlic harvest of multiples
Fast forward to late December and the weather got colder, I knew our garlic supply was getting smaller, but the joy and ease of "Oh, I need some garlic, let me go grab one" was way too easy. However as the weather started going to that "let's try sub-zero." Daddy and I decided to bring in the last of the garlic. What you see below is the last lb of garlic. I will admit that having barely made it to Jan I was sad since it meant we would probably have to buy the grocery store stuff for a few months. Pooka actually said "NO, I don't want grocery store garlic, it tastes funny." 
The last of the garlic
Moral of this story, plant more garlic. Let us hope next year's harvest does better.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Saving Pooka Seeds

When we got what we call a Pooka tomato, I decided to try to save the seeds. They were very prolific if a tad small, but we had a ton for one little plant. Pooka just wanted to have a tomato named after her, and I figured we may as well try with these than with anything else.
Pooka tomatoes
A search of the interwebs lead us here, to pretty solid directions on how to do this. In two separate batches (a couple weeks apart), we scooped out the inner part of tomato and let it sit in some water on the counter for a few bit. Now, this is probably the nastiest part, and Pooka wanted no part of it after they grew furry (and they are suppose to)

Getting ready to ferment
 Once the seeds had the correct level of nasty, we strained them from the water. Now, this was rather gross, but we did rinse them off while they were in the strainer. It was much better and Pooka was once again interested.
This is post rinsing off.
 Once we thought they were mostly dry, we placed them on a cloth washcloth (I had heard that paper towels tend to stick) and found a very unused corner to let them sit for a couple of weeks to completely dry out.
And now we have seeds
Once they were dry, I packaged them in a small envelope and placed them with the seeds. Pooka wants to see if she can begin growing her own tomato again. I am just hoping they grow at all. We will have to wait and see.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Oops, Again

It seems I did it again. School started, people were busy and the blog fell by the wayside. Christmas came and went, and suddenly I start looking at seeds and organizing the seeds in general and I went... Oh, I should probably check the blog.

I am hoping in the coming days, to get back to posting (at least during the school year) 2-3 times a week. Maybe it will even be about what we are doing that week (a shock I know).

So here is me, saying Oops, sorry about that. Life is well, life sometimes, and if you blink, you miss it.