Peripatetic philomaths…focusing on what's really important, eating ethically and cleanly, fermenting, foraging/wildcrafting, practicing herbalism, and being responsible stewards of our land. Sharing our photos, musings, and learnings. Still seeking our tribe.
We value roosters here – as flock protectors (though effectiveness varies by rooster), fertilizers of eggs, and, when we have too many, food. We’ve found, over time, that even roosters that may initially seem mild-mannered can become real jerks and we don’t brook jerks on the farm. They go to “freezer camp”.
Every year, we find volunteer sunflowers growing somewhere on our property. The cause is easy to identify: the black oil sunflower seeds (BOSS) that we feed to the poultry and waterfowl get scattered around – sometimes even by wild birds – and those plucky seeds germinate. Seemingly in the blink of an eye, a radiant sunflower appears. And what’s cheerier than a sunflower?
When the volunteer grows late in the season, though, its chances for its seeds to reach maturity become slim. One late summer sunflower, with multiple funky little heads, did manage to produce seeds.
A second one that grew just weeks behind the first (above) succumbed to a killing frost. I found it frozen one morning when the temperatures had plunged overnight. I wish that one had made it to the finish line, too…but know it didn’t worry about the future – it just lived and grew, each day.
In Spring, I’ll plant some low-maintenance, smile-inducing sunflowers intentionally…but I bet a few volunteers will still pop up, too!
Our dogs enjoy baked butternut squash in their stuffed KONG toys, so I prepped one for roasting recently. As usual, I cut it open and removed the seeds, planning to save them for planting later (it was an organic squash). It was only when I spread the seeds to dry that I realized one had germinated inside the squash.
After a stretch of warmish weather here, the cold has returned. Last night, the sky had that look: thick, heavy, yet cottony clouds hung overhead – a “snow sky”. Though there was no snow in the forecast, we’ve learned to rely on the signs, rather than the weather app…and flakes fell as we began the nightly animal lockup. Only a few, but maybe it was a harbinger – or maybe that’s just wishful thinking!