Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Our first composter... and other happenings around the farm

This past weekend, we built our first composter! Our friend Richard at Green Desert Eco Farm got us started with some extra pallets he had, as well as the name of the place we can get them from. After I picked up some more last Friday, we were ready to build.

I never realized how many uses there are for pallets. And they are perfect for building an easy composter. We decided to build a long composter with 3 bins. We will start filling one side, and move to the next once that one is full. If we fill up those quickly, we can always build single composters, also using pallets. We spent Saturday morning building. It turned out to be a beautiful day, and we have the sunburns to prove it.

Here's what we came up with :)

See? Not too hard, and it doesn't look too bad either. We will still build a removable top section, as well as one for the front. Right off the bat, we threw in a little bit of soil, some leaves I finally raked up, and some hay from the barn (brown stuff). I've been adding more green stuff from the kitchen -- coffee grounds, veggie scraps, etc. (Random side note: you can also compost fingernails, and hair!) I'll keep an eye on it, and wet it and turn it every once in awhile, and before we know it, we'll have our own compost.

Another thing we did this weekend was brew 2 batches of beer. We haven't done as much of it over the last year as we did previously, but we prefer home-brewed to store-bought, so this was long overdue. Our new friend Joe from Westcliffe came over and helped us brew 2 batches -- a Sunshine Wheat clone, and an Amber.

(Daisy helps. It's sanitary.. really)

We should have some tasty homebrew by the time we can sit outside and enjoy it :)

It's becoming more and more apparent around here that Spring is just around the corner. Huge patches of green grass around Penrose seem to be growing every day. And we saw quite a few honey bees this weekend. (Another random note.. bees come out when it is 50 degrees outside. Just learned that one, too). Another sign it's getting warmer -- the bugs are coming out. Or should I say, into my house.

We decided to postpone chickens slightly. First, we are going to focus on the garden, which is really the reason for it all. Our next step is the raised beds. Once we have those built, we can build our coop. It will only be a few weeks extra before we get our chicks, though. I have them picked out :)

I recently, (as in, this morning), found out about an organization called
The Greenhorns. It is a non-profit organization made up of young farmers with a mission to recruit and support other young farmers.

Watch the trailer for their documentary film, which is now in post-production.

One of the young farmers, Amy Courtney, says "I'm doing the best that I can to live honestly. I'm not relying on some strange economic structures that have been set up that benefit some and hurt others to make my livelihood. I think that makes me feel just a little bit safer in a world gone mad.”

This is what we are after -- living honestly and purposefully. I want to create a better life for ourselves and our family now, and a better future for our children and grandchildren.