I just calculated the harvest totals to the end of September. I’m up to 163 pounds of produce for the first nine months of the year. Not a whopping total, but not bad given the size of my “farm.”
Like most of the produce from my new community garden plot, my watermelons are substandard in size, but fine on flavor. I’ve been busy “putting by” what produce I am getting.
I also made and canned dilly beans and watermelon rind pickles. The mint grew well this year, so I dried a quart of mint for tea during the winter. All in all, I’m not unhappy with this year’s garden.
So far in October I’ve harvested another 30 lbs of produce, so I’m up to about 190 lbs to present. For heavy crops, I have a few watermelons and a couple of winter squash still growing, plus beets, carrots, yams, and navel oranges. Fortunately, I managed to beat the rats this year to most of my apple crop, which is now safely in the refrigerator. I have enough for some pies and a batch of apple butter. I don’t think the year’s total harvest will be too bad. If I can harvest another 30 lbs in November and December, I will be able to at least equal last year’s crop. Not sure that my cabbages and broccoli will be ready to harvest before the end of the year, but that should help. I’m still working on putting in my fall garden.
There has been progress in the chicken yard. After a couple of weeks of moving hens between the old enclosed coop and the new fenced enclosure, they are getting along. I had been keeping the new hen, who we have dubbed Miss Hillary after the hurricane that came up from Mexico right after we got her, in a new fenced enclosure. However, she flew out of it one night when a possum frightened her. She just wasn’t safe outside of the enclosed coop. Fortunately, the hens have adjusted to one another and are now getting along fairly well.
So am I rolling in eggs? Not at all. Henrietta, our Black Australorp, has been molting for a couple of months now and is not laying. Miss Hillary laid two eggs right after we got her and then stopped. She is now molting as well. The burden of egg production has fallen on the shoulders, er, wings, of Chicken Little. But she’s an older girl now, and winter is coming on, so we’re getting only about four eggs a week at present. Ah, the joys of chicken keeping.
Bottom line, egg production is down and fruit/vegetable production has not been stupendous this year. I’ll be doing good to equal last year’s production of 224 lbs of produce, despite the fact that I added a new community garden plot to my available “farmland.” Well, there’s always next year.