January 23, 2013

Homesteading Goals for 2013

The world has not ended and the zombies did not invade and 2013 is here, therefore we will list our homestead project goals again this year. This remains a list of things I am very interested in doing, but is also a list that gives and takes with all the ups and downs of the years coming events. Our oldest graduates from high school and starts college this year and the Hubs and I are actually going on VACATION this summer so I anticipate less accomplishments.

Our goals from last year:
  1. Build a top bar hive and get some bees!  Did not happen last year, the financial investment for a new hive was too much and I did not get organized enough to jump on the swarm list action.
  2. Build a new roof for the chicken coop. CHECK! We replaced our little plastic roof with a nice metal corrugated roof complete with gutter and rain chain!
  3. Start an herb garden in the front yard.  Well, not in the front yard, but I did start one in the back!
  4. Make more wine.  Did not get around to it, but we made cider!
  5. Make more cider. CHECK! 
  6. Expand our water collection system. I am re-thinking the entire system and its location, so this was postponed.
  7. Build a root cellar.  This is a much bigger project than anticipated, and the Hubs and I are still trying to decide how to allocate the basement.
  8. Learn to make mead. Well, I did learn to make it, just haven't made it myself yet..need the bees!
  9. Grow some artichokes. CHECK! 
  10. Use the pressure canner.  Turns out I did not have much to pressure can this year, so I ended up freezing our green beans instead.

Hmmm.... so 4 out 10 is not too bad..... is it? I did accomplish some things that were not even included on this list.

  • We built and planted a hugelkultur bed, and it was very much a success after I figured out how to keep the chooks out of it again and again!
  • We grew three watermelons!  Okay, they were less than 3" in diameter and I ended up feeding them to the chickens...but I grew them!
  • I planted a new pear and an Italian plum tree, and kept them watered through the summer and they survived, even grew three pears!

Pollo Loco 2013 Homesteading Goals:

  1. Build a permanent chicken run.
  2. Add two more hugelkulter beds.
  3. Layout a planting plan utilizing companion planting and actually follow it this year (this is started!).
  4. Build and use a cider press (with our friend that has a farm with apple trees).
  5. Intermingle more herbs and beneficial flowers into the veggie beds.

Pollo Loco circa 2012 - "Before"

This is a good before photo of the homestead, note the sticks and plastic fencing for the chicken run. Stay tuned to see the transformation!

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