Garden is finished

Wow… I have had 22 days in a row at or above 100%. 1.44 inches of rain in the past 48 days.

Poor old garden has died, dried up and is a fire hazard. Squash, cucumbers and beans stopped producing about the middle of June. Okra has hung on but with the high temps has stopped producing.

Pond has dried up, yesterday I saw a bull frog holding a tiny sign that said “Will work for water.” Last week I spied 2 crawdads in the bottom of the dry pond digging a well.

It has been 103 to 112 for the past 18 days and my weather guy said I can expect the next 7 day to be the same.
Spending a lot of time slow, deep watering grape vines and fruit trees. I have to much invested in them to let our regular scheduled dry spell kill them.

I know an old Comanche Indian that says he’s 193 years old, well he said that’s how old he feels.
I complained about the drought and high temperatures and he told me son you live in Southwest Oklahoma, it gets hot, it gets dry, quit your damn whining.

O-Well there’s always next year.

Happy Gardening

Summer vegetables!

It’s the 8 day of June and I have been harvesting radishes, 3 types, french breakfast, icicle and cherry bells for about 2 weeks.

Zucchini and straight yellow squash are producing bushels of squash. This abundant harvest has allowed me to feed my family and a small village of 2500 and still have surplus to feed the horse and donkey.

Lettuce was a failure, planted to late and summer heat got most of the lettuce crop. I’ll try again late this fall.

Happy Gardening

2022 Gardening Season

National Weather Service is forecasting snow today. It’s hard to be thinking of garden planting on days like today, but time is running out on getting the garden well tilled, compost and manure tilled in to the soil.

Garden soil is very dry, we have had less than 2 inches of rain in the past 3 months. This makes working the soil difficult at best.

Garden seed has arrived. I plant mostly summer, warm/hot weather vegetables in the spring and a few cooler weather vegetables like turnips, collards and beets in mid to late July for fall harvest.

I needed a few canning jars and lids for the up coming canning season. Much to my surprise jars don’t seem to be in short supply but quality Mason/Kerr and Ball jar lids are difficult to locate.
I finely after many attempts managed to buy 5 dozen regular and the same number of wide mouth Ball brand lids from Walmart.

Be aware that some brands of jar lids on the market have been reported to have up to a 50 percent failure rate.
In this event your only choices are to refrigerate and consume those jars of canned fruits/vegetables in the next few days or to replace the lid and reprocess those jars in the hope they seal on your second try.

Happy Gardening

Smartphones who needs them?

Dulcie Cowling is something of an anomaly she has ditched hers.
The 36-year-old decided at the end of last year that getting rid of her handset would improve her mental health.
Everyone is missing out on real life. I don’t think you get to your death bed and think you should have spent more time on Twitter, or reading articles online.

Alex Dunedin trashed his smartphone two years ago. “Culturally we have become addicted to these tools,” says the educational researcher and technology expert. “They are blunting cognition and impeding productivity.”

Hilda Burke, a psychotherapist and author of The Phone Addiction Workbook, says there is a strong link between heavy device usage and relationship issues, quality of sleep, our ability to switch off and relax, and concentration levels.

“Many people have a constant drip feed of requests coming their way via their device, many with a false sense of urgency.

“They feel unable to lay boundaries down, with the result that they feel compelled to check their emails and messages last thing at night and first thing in the morning.”

Ms Burke says it would be useful if more people monitored how much time they spend on their smartphone. “Starting to realize exactly how much time you’re frittering away each day on your phone can be a powerful wake-up call and catalyst for change.”

Consider most of us check our phones 55 times per day and some of us even 100 times.

Get off the phone. Take your life back.

Bad News For Your Pocket Book

Sea ports are closed or operating at 40 – 60 percent capacity, a truck driver shortage of 80,000 drivers. Rising fuel cost, rising labor cost, sky rocking cost of new replacement transportation vehicles. Forced closures of container storage areas and closure of warehouses (Biden, governors and mayors lock-down mandates.) Most experts in the transportation industry do not see conditions improving for months or possibility years.

Ports in Asia and Europe are not fairing any better than American ports. This is compounding the shipping problem by causing a shortage of available ships, trucks, rail cars and shipping containers at manufacturing businesses world wide.

When Donald Trump was president October 2020, the price to ship a 40 foot container from Asia to California was $3,800. That price under Biden’s administration cost spiked to $17,000 per-container in October of 2021, according to supply chain technology company Freightos.
Freightos said that shipping a container to the east coast is more expensive than the west coast, with rates reaching $20,000.

More than 100 ships were reported this week to be anchored off the coast of California waiting their turn to dock and unload full containers. But the seaports are stocked so high that ports are forcing vessels to wait up to 1 month before unloading.

As many as 200,000 40 foot shipping containers are stranded off the coast waiting to dock in Los Angeles.
Los Angeles had nearly 500 thousand 20-foot shipping containers, about 12 million metric tons of goods waiting in drift areas and at anchor for spots to open up along the port to dock and unload, according to the Marine Exchange of Southern California’s master queuing list.

The effect of rising fuel costs, a large container vessel used in Trans-Pacific trade, with an actual, maximum container capacity of 3,875 FEUs (forty foot containers.)
With the cost of bunker fuel at $552 per ton, and with fuel consumption of 217 tons per day, a 28-day round trip voyage for this one vessel would produce a fuel bill of $3,353,952. This cost does not include the daily cost of operating/maintaining the ship and it’s crew.

Biden administration, Governors and Mayors forced coronavirus lock-downs has had a tremendous negative impact on the transportation industry nationwide, causing headaches at sea ports, warehouses, railways, and trucking companies.

Will history books record 1816, the year Without A Summer and 2022 the year America Did Without everything?

Flat Bread, Fast and Easy

Flat Bread:

Ingredients:
6 – servings —————————— 2-3 servings

2 cups of flour—————————— 1 cup
3/4 cup water——————————- 1/3 cup
2 tablespoons of oil————————- 1 1/2 tablespoons
1/2 teaspoon salt—————————- 1/4 teaspoon
1 tablespoon of baking powder————- 1/2 tablespoon
For cooking – 2 teaspoons of oil

Preparation:
If you like herb bread add 1 teaspoon of herb(s) fresh or dried that you like.

In a bowl mix all of the dough ingredients into a unified dough. Add a bit more water it your dough is dry.
Knead with your hands for 2-3 minutes and shape into a ball.

Divide the ball into 6 and roll each part into a disc shape.

Heat 2 teaspoons of oil in a nonstick pan on high heat.

Cook each disc of dough, About 1-2 minutes on each side. Take care not to burn your flat bread.

Place the flat bread on a plate or fold in half to be used like a flour toco tortilla, cover with a clean
kitchen towel to keep warm.

** Convert this recipe to make tortilla’s by omitting the baking powder.

Food Inflation and the Supply Chain

This past year my annual food cost have risen around $600 to $1,000 dollars during 2021.

For some this is not a real financial burden. However for me being on a fixed income a 7% or 8% cost of food increase is a burden and must be dealt with the best way(s) I know.
To this end I have been collecting unused canning jars from friends and family members and buying what I can’t find free with the goal of doubling the amount of fruits and vegetables I can to carry me through the cold non-garden months.

My vegetable garden space has doubled from past years and I am adding a few more fruit trees to my tiny orchard. Much to my dismay and sticker shock my normal list of vegetable seeds are 3 and in some cases 4 times the price from last spring. I’ll do much more seed saving this fall.
Planted Hybrid seeds do not come back true to it’s mother plant, they tend to revert back to one of it’s parent plants. Often this is not a good thing.
Heirloom plants are open pollinated and do come back true to it’s mother plant and as such are the best choice if you plan to save seed for next years vegetable garden.

Small bare root fruit trees and many grape vines if you can find them at all have shot up in price from about $25 dollars last spring to $45 to $75 dollars each this spring planting season. Almost every fruit tree variety I have been looking for is simply not available this season.

For the first time in many years I harvested and processed 2 bucks and 4 does to supplement my meat supply this year.
I am in the process of cleaning, repairing, painting my old rabbit hutches. I haven’t raised meat rabbits for about 10 years, however it’s time to get 3 or 4 does and a buck. Properly managed each doe will produce 3 litters a year averaging 6 kits per-litter. Growing to a butcher weight of about 5-6 pounds each in 6-8 weeks. Yearly each doe will produce 25-30 pounds of healthy, low fat, great tasting meat.

Happy Safe 2022.

Home invaders can be sneaky

Merry Christmas

Why We Need A Well Armed Police Force

Merry Christmas to all

Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine fails

A low dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine failed to produce an adequate response in children aged two through five years of age.

The companies announced the results from ongoing critical trials on Friday and said that after testing children 6 months to 5 years of age with one-tenth of the adult dose produced no/limited immune response in children between 2 and 5.