It's nice to see the sun this morning after days of rain. I'm hoping the temperatures will be a little more springlike as well. I'm just itching to get outside and work on the "honey-do" list. That's our to-do list of things that need to be accomplished. Here in the Great North Woods our summer season is so short we have to really hustle to get everything done that needs to be during the better weather. Spring and fall are our crunch times. Winter is just too cold and snowy to get much done and summer is too hot, muggy and buggy. So during the two mild seasons we crunch everything in, then relax during the heat of summer, or hunker down to wait out the winter. While fall is filled with projects like getting the firewood split and stacked, and buttoning up the house and barn in preparation for snow and cold, spring is packed with clean-up from the winter, garden preparation and yard work. Some of the bigger projects that are planned for this year are:
1) Clear more land and seed for pasture. Areas that were fenced last year had the undergrowth cleared by goats and pigs last summer. Now it's time to cut out the big stuff, use what we can for firewood and drag the rest to burn piles, then seed the newly cleared areas. The sheep then keep it cleared. (See this before and after for an example.)
2) Fence another few acres to repeat the process of goats and pigs clearing out the undergrowth. Then repeat above next year.
3) Put in raised bed gardens and build a small greenhouse to extend our short growing season. I've yet to get tomatoes to ripen here on the mountain. They just begin to turn red about the time we get our first frost. This year they'll be inside a portable greenhouse made from a section of a 12x20 round roof portable garage that once served as an animal shelter before we got some of the new barn completed. The canvas cover has long since disintegrated but we'll take a section of it and cover it with heavy clear plastic to serve as protection in May and Sept. The other section of that frame will receive a new cover and become the new chicken coop. Hey, recycle is my middle name.
4) Build the 3rd and final section of the barn. We got the 2nd section done last year just before winter set in. We were way behind schedule and fortunately hard winter held off till we got it done. In fact the heavy snow began that same night. This year we'll connect the roof and remove the temporary interior walls so we'll have one big open area. See the blog on building the barn to get an idea of what I'm talking about.
Now I'd like to hear from you. What projects are you planning for this year? Let me know what your "honey-do" list looks like.