May On The Homestead

May on the homestead was a good month for weather and growth of plants. We had a hot streak for a week, that really ramped up the plants, then it settled into a nice high 50’s to low 60’s for the rest of the month.

The little Lilac tree, that looked barely alive when we loved in, has flourished due to a good pruning, and a heavy feeding. It put on an amazing show.

The transplanted blueberries all came into line and so far none have been weak. Lots of flowers for the native bumblebees.

Knowing that it will be late summer till we have new beds created, I put in garden pots where ever I could tuck them into. I ended up moving it around later, but at least things got planted in time.

The native Evergreen Huckleberry bush. We have many of these on the land. I have had to remove some though, which totally eats at me.

May brought more implements for the BCS tractor, which meant more projects could be finished. The flail mower attachment and the wood chipper have been game changers. The joy being that if it’s delivered by 18 wheeler, it gets dropped on the side of the road. Our driveway cuts across 2 acres.

Evening fires in the pit.

Olympic Mountains from our yard, at sunset.

The sunsets can be amazing on clear nights due to the open water being on the other side of the low ridge.

The other unloved tree was a Dogwood, that also heavily pruned and fertilized, has paid off.

Wild Lupine setting up to open.

Iris blooming.

Chives in bloom, from a plant I dug up and brought here.

Kirk working on tilling part of the fields, using our BCS Tractor.

To the right is the spot where the greenhouse will go.

Lupine in full bloom.

In February Alistaire had asked if he could plant a couple of pea seeds, in the greenhouse, before we moved. They grew. We moved. They came along. I honestly didn’t think they’d make it, but they did once transplanted.

May was a huge month of clearing, and the forest next to the house was worked on extensively. This was about half way done.

Lots of baby blueberries on.

Thimbleberry, a native berry. It grows along the edge of the woods.

A tiny nest we found in the field, tucked under tree branches piled for the chipper.

I had picked up Siberia Kale starts on a whim at the start of the month.

First picking. I picked 3 times in May, and it’s growing back fast for the 4th harvest. Not a bad investment of $2.50!

The container garden doing pretty good by the end of the month.

And the tomato bed, putting on lots of flowers in the end of May. Tomatoes here on the island could pose a huge challenge. I need to rig a backdrop of black, to reflect the heat, and may need to cover it with plastic sheeting to ramp up the heat. At our old house it was hot enough I could grow field tomatoes. Next year, they will have to be all in tunnels to grow efficiently. It’s that little bit of being a smidge father North and the temperatures being 10° or lower on average.

We pulled out a number of small trees in the two main fields, and got the largest field flail mowed (it was chest high in some areas, and hadn’t been mowed in 2-3 years). Mowing it has dropped our raging mosquito issue down by at least 90%. We can actually be outside and not be attacked in the evening, unless we are far down in that field. Breaking the cycle by destroying their eggs!

It shall be interesting to see what happens in June…which is starting out cold. Island life is a learning curve for growing food. I’m learning this year on what to do, and that is a good thing.