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Bring on the spring babies!

From My Place To Yours: Early Spring 2012

The best time of year to live on an acreage is in the spring. It's also the busiest and most stressful time, full of life and death.

Two years ago, my family and I experienced a terrible kidding season, with all five does having difficulty giving birth, resulting in one live kid (a buck we kept for breeding).

Last year, we prepared for trouble, building a special goat hut (actually, converting it from a pig hut) and using more bedding and heaters.

Daughter Caroline, 17, was on high alert, checking the livestock several times a day. One morning, she went out and there were three sets of twins and a single. All were healthy and no intervention was needed. We hope this spring delivers its young with the same ease.

The 10 things I'm going to change in my garden

I made a list of everything I want to try in my garden, based on what worked and what didn't work last year. Here it is:

 

What's on your garden list? Email me at staff@livingthecountrylife.com.

-Betsy Freese

  1. Plant more gladiolus. Until the deer found them late in the blooming season, my glads were gorgeous. I dug the bulbs, kept them in the garage, and will add more.
  2. Put up a deer fence around the garden.
  3. Nix the purple onions; they don't last. Nothing beats a medium-size yellow onion for lasting all winter.
  4. Skip the artichokes. What was I thinking? Plant more romaine lettuce instead.
  5. Welcome the mint. It will come up and spread whether I want it or not.
  6. Add more sweet potatoes. Deer ate the leaves a few times, but I still ended up with massive sweet potatoes, the most delicious I've ever tasted.
  7. Don't bother with melons. Every variety I've grown has tasted bland.
  8. Pass on the cherry tomatoes. Those I planted two years ago will seed themselves.
  9. Forget strawberries. They will never taste like Dad's. And the deer eat the leaves.
  10. Try three new things I have never grown before. What should that be?

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