Sunday, March 19, 2017

A Season For All Things

Sigh...I look over to the right of my blog and see my blog list.....is it time to let go and clean it up? Sheepdog blogs are definitely a thing of the past.....sadly, some of the bloggers have passed on.  I still go back and read Vet On The Edge...her writing brought so much normal, mixed with serious humor, to my life!

This year, I've written my list of things to do...and decluttering is top of that list.  I've promised myself to declutter yearly....keep to the clutter less (or less clutter) ways of downsizing and moving.  Funny how things stack up...bee supplies, books, dog gear, clothes......oh and yarn, gah.  Perhaps decluttering the blog would be a good clearing as well.

Today we have SUN!!!!  I want to take off all my clothes and run naked through the muddy wet field...okay, not really! But I am tackling a few things....1) planting my bare root Honey Crisp apple trees!!!!!!  2) planting my blueberry bushes!!!!!!  And 3) getting into my bees!!!!  Because, guess what?  Rain is a coming!

I am doing a bee mentorship program with Oregon State University.  My bee mentor is coming out today to help me sort my hives.  I've been voraciously readying the bee book required.....out of three hives I attempted to winter over....I've got two that are very busy on warm, sunny days.  The third....I'm not sure they made it.  I'm looking forward to getting into that hive ands seeing what is up.  If it is not strong, I'll mix it with a split from a strong hive later this spring.  I'm thinking both big hives will require early splits before the blackberry nectar flows......hoping to keep swarming at bay this year.  And then that is it for me....four hives is my maximum!  I'm enjoying the bees...but they are labor intense if they are to be done correct.  A person has to get into the hives every 16 days while the hives are growing to keep swarming away.  And even after all that....there is the honey harvest...and then the August dearth....where the bees have no food source and the yellow jackets get MEAN.  I am trying to plant ahead this year for August food for my bees.....I'm doing a bunch of sunflowers and a few other plants that bloom in August.

I planted 5 acres of my bottom 40  in clover last fall.  Thanks to the folks who lease my property...they tilled it to the point of being able to plant!  The bees are going to LOVE the clover...and if I can keep it grazed....clover should bloom will into the fall.  Clover honey is delish....I'm thinking my honey will taste very different this year!

The puppies are growing, recalls are good for now, of course they know their names.  They are sleeping in crates at night...we are in bed by 9 and up by 6 with no middle of the night potty breaks.  A friend has volunteered to help me take them to puppy class....so we can get them leash trained and comfortable traveling and being in new places while meeting new dogs.  Secretly, I look forward to sticking them on sheep...and some days the draw is hard to resist!  But they are young....12 weeks yesterday....there is time to take and things to learn before they head to the round pen.  I think back to the quote by Virgil Holland....."I've seen more dogs ruined by starting them too early, than staring them too late."  So I will die to my curiosity......although when they see the sheep heading down to the bottom pasture to graze, and they pull up and watch....it makes my heart sing!

Seize the day!!

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