Tuesday, June 30, 2009

phenological events June 2009

June 2009

1st- harvesting rhubarb
radish & lettuce
3rd- hellgramites morph
8th- plant beans
9th- big rain & thunder
12th- harvesting rabe
15th- apples size of golf balls
17th- second planting of corn
beans and lettuce
20th- roses bloom
24th- elders bloom
26th- currents ripen
27th- harvesting peas
28th- blackberries bloom

Monday, June 29, 2009

peas please


The peas are starting to come in now. It is a good year for peas..I eat most of them fresh, along with the tendrils...in salads. They are tender and taste so good! These are dwarf snap that I planted in April. I also have a row of Norli that I planted for my seed bank. They are only about 2 inches high right now. Yesterday afternoon I picked peas. Some of them make it into the steamer, and taste delicious lightly steamed.

The rest of the garden is growing fast with all of the rain we have been having. Take a look at the difference...this photo of the tomato bed was taken a few weeks ago...


And this photo was taken yesterday...


I have some of them in cages, but still need to stake the rest of them. We didn't use the trellis this year, so we are trying something a little different. Trellising works well for early ripe tomatoes in a climate that stays cool for the most part. I hope these will be ready before September! Most of them are showing flower. I mulched them heavily with the grass clippings from the mower...


This is the broccoli bed..I have brussel sprouts in the foreground.


They have really taken off. I haven't grown brussel sprouts in years, and I am pleased to have gotten these off to an early start. Brussel Sprouts require a fairly long growing season, but thankfully, they can take a few frosts...

The yellow flowers on the right are the broccoli rabe flowers. We have been enjoying our share of the broccoli rabe, everyone has had enough, and the freezer is full. I'm letting some of the plants go to seed. This was the best crop of broccoli rabe I've ever raised. The seed came from Johnny's Select. I started some inside and transplanted them, but the ones that were direct sown, did just as well if not better. I will direct sow broccoli rabe from now on. It is such a tiny little seed, surprisingly, the plant gets pretty big. Once this seeds up, I will pull it and dry it, and plant carrots in the same place.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

effeuiller la marguerite

"now gentle flower, I pray thee tell..."


"...he loves me, he loves me lots..."


"...the decision of the flower..."

Thursday, June 18, 2009

wheels in my path


Over the past few weeks, I have met some interesting spinning wheels in my travels. It is of no coincidence that all of these wheels are made to spin flax. I am lately fixated with flax and flax wheels... This first one (above) was made by Enoch Slossen Williams, sometime between 1820 and 1830. It lives at the Old Mill Village Museum.

It was repaired by the late Bill Ralph, in 1996. It is an identical copy of a Farnham wheel...of Owego, NY. "From Bill Ralph's memory--The Farnham and Williams families joined when a Farnham maried E.S. Williams and he learned from Farnham how to make wheels".


I love how the water pot is tied to the mother of all.


This little flax wheel lives at the Mannings Handweaving School in East Berlin PA.

Notice the cut out shape in the bench....


This Double Flyer wheel lives above the other wheel. It is on a shelf that is up high, so I could not see it very well to examine the way it was set up. I imagine it is out of reach for a reason.


It is interesting to me because I have never seen a double flyer wheel in a saxony style. I wish I knew more about this wheel.


I tried to look under the bench for a signature but could not see anything. It appears that the top portion of the distaff is missing.


This little flax wheel is sweet and lovely..she lives at my mother's house. This wheel was also missing the top portion of the distaff, but Fred Hatton made a new one for it. You cannot see it pictured here because the flax is covering it. He made a beautiful line distaff that I managed (somehow) to dress properly.


The bobbin/flyer will eventually need to be replaced as well. Those nails have got to go! I did manage to spin some linen thread on her. I fed her some oil, tied up her treadle and cleaned off the shaft (which was really gunked up). As I was spinning, I wondered about the last time she saw flax on her bobbin...

I don't know much about the history of this wheel or the maker, if anyone has any ideas about it, please feel free to email me!

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

on becoming an idiom


this past weekend found me in the city. each time i visit a city, it is startling to realize how fast the overall pace of living can be there.

my senses where overwhelmed, there is so much to see and experience in the city... the sights and sounds and smells are so different from what i have become accustomed to in the country.


i did have a wonderful time seeing loved ones and celebrating-- but in the background, the landscape was a constant reminder that i was out of my element....sigh...


on the way home...


...as the landscape changes...


it is obvious... i have become the girl you can take out of the country, but...

Friday, June 05, 2009

a day with PA WAgN

Photobucket little finnsheep lambs greeting the women...

The visit from the PA WAgN, (or Pennsylvania Women's Agricultural Network) went very well. We had beautiful weather, and a terrific group of people that travelled a good distance across the state of PA to come to the Hatton Farm. After the sheep presentation, it was my pleasure to introduce some of them to spinning on a Great Wheel. I was feeling very good about 2 women who never tried spinning on a Great Wheel before, but were spinning yarn on one just minutes after a quick lesson!

Photobucket recently restored by Fred Hatton, this Great Wheel is easy to use- very smooth and effortless turning....

After spinning on this Great Wheel, and then trying out one of the treadle wheels, Linda remarked that the Great Wheel seemed to "spin the yarn by itself!" Well, almost....

Photobucket Grace's new wheel...

In addition to the Great Wheel, there were spindles and other antique wheels that were available to test drive...


The afternoon passed too quickly, and I didn't have time to try out this beautiful distaff that Fred made--maybe another time!

Thanks to Fred and Grace Hatton, for welcoming us to the farm and sharing their knowledge and talents (and the coffee and cookies were GREAT!)

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