First, Happy Solstice weekend, everyone! It’s been rather off-again, on-again rainy this weekend, which put a damper on our bonfire celebration, so we’ve put that off until next weekend.
We did celebrate with fresh basil pesto and basil-lime-gin cocktails, so it wasn’t a total loss.
Oona and I spent time wandering around the farm and looking at all of the plants growing in that we never knew were there before (it’s been easier to take inventory of things growing back slowly after having scraped it bare).
We found a wild rosebush (which I hope to transplant to a better spot), and lots of Brown-Eyed Susans popping up.
There’s plenty of Queen Ann’s Lace and little Daisies. Near where we keep the hay there’s also plenty of this:
Butterfly Weed. It’s quite lovely, actually, and it’s a nice compliment to the Butterfly Bushes I have that have spread and volunteered in places far from were the originals were planted. Whatever I can do to attract more pollinators is a good thing!
Then we found the berries. Now, I knew we had a decent amount of wild blackberry bushes scattered everywhere, but I didn’t realize the full volume of what we are dealing with. SCORES of bushes. EVERYWHERE. We picked a good bowl-full of berries, and left many, many unripe berries on the plants to go back for later.
Most of the plants are just starting to grow back in from where the land was cleared a few years ago and aren’t in berry yet. This means that in a year or two we will have more berries than we can handle. I am so looking forward to making jam and vinegar with them! For today we simple ate the berries out of hand.
Not only that, but…
My blueberry plant is finally producing! Sadly, it is but one crummy little plant. However – I bought several more blueberry plants plants from The Arbor Day Foundation that we will plant this fall (along with 3 more apple trees, 5 cherry trees, 2 peach trees, a Damson plum, and 2 chestnut trees!). There are also plans in the works to put in a terraced strawberry bed along the lower edge of my vegetable garden (thanks to my friend Lisa at Red Row Farm for the idea!).
I’m grateful I took the time to slow down and really take a look around at what we have to work with here. This little homestead has served us better than we thought it would, and I’m glad we’ve decided to put more into it rather than dreaming of somewhere better.