Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Harvest Time: Sweet Potatoes

This year we planted a 4' x 4' raised bed with 9 sweet potato slips. The soil was made up of about 1/2 soil, 1/2 compost, bone meal, and some vermiculite. It proved to be a great bed for the sweet potatoes. The night before the first frost, 10/19, all of the family helped dig the potatoes. Being our first foray into these versatile crops , we had no idea of what to expect. To our surprise, there were 36 lbs. of roots hiding underneath the overflowing green vines.

Even though the books suggest that you keep them 10 - 14 days in 80 - 85 degrees with high humidity to help the curing process, we did not have the space to do it. Instead we spread the potatoes out on top of the dog kennel and kept them moist with some towels. They will keep for up to 3 months in a dry 50 - 60 degree room.

All of the family took November 1st to wrap the sweet potatoes in newspaper and store them downstairs in the storage room--a finished room in the northeast corner of the basement which has the heat vent closed.

So, we wait for the great sugary taste to develop and have some wonderful sweet potato fries, chips, baked potatoes, and casserole. Good times at the Carson's house!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Cow = Living Mower

So...I noticed that it has been one year since I left my last post. The cows have done a marvelous job cleaning things up around the farm. Some of the trees survived the harsh summer; however, some either succumbed to the weather or to the cows hooves. Either way, many of the trees did not make it. And, I'm learning how to do a better job planting.

An addition to the Walnut Ridge Farm came this past year when we purchased 3 acres of adjoining property. Now it is 22 - 23 acres strong. Here is a copy of some of the logs that were taken out of the tract of land between us beginning negotiations and signing on the dotted line.

While the six of us were on a nature walk through the 3 acres, we ran across this beauty...thankfully their inhabitants were sleeping.

One of the saddest parts on the farm this year was when we laid Dallas, Kevin's 15 year old lab, and Tarra, our 14 year old sheltie, to rest. They both died only a week a part from one another. They now rest underneath this beautiful tree.

This fall promises to be a great time at Walnut Ridge. We plan to host a skeet shooting adventure in September. Hopefully, Kevin and I will harvest two more deer. Last fall made the second fall to harvest a deer: 2 does, 1 button buck.

We are thankful for God's creation and all of the blessings that He has given us.

Friday, August 13, 2010

August is a time for being indoors (or in the pool)!

Wow, is it hot! The trees are hanging on...barely. We have not added a well at Walnut Ridge yet, so the trees are fending for themselves. The neighbor did allow us to use his well, but I hate to wear out our welcome. God has provided some needed rain...that is always nice.

The big event for the month has been the McGee family outing. They enjoyed Walnut Ridge's hills and valley to practice shooting, have fun with the grandkids, and spend time as a family.
Here is a great website that I have newly found. It contains some great ideas for how we can develop Walnut Ridge. www.hobbyfarms.com

Monday, June 14, 2010

Sapling Growth

The view of the future...

Warm weather has arrived at Walnut Ridge; however,tonight was rather enjoyable. A front was moving through which provided a nice cool breeze while I was bush hogging. Occasionally there will be a deer or other animals watching me mow. I only saw where deer had been--the grass is really matted down. Hopefully they keep using the land until winter when I can put one of them in the freezer.

Southwest view

Southeast--taken from tractor

Early March the six of us worked to plant almost 250 saplings: Loblolly Pine, Norway Spruce, White Oak, Tulip Poplar, Hazelnut, Persimmon, Redbud, White Dogwood, and Sumac. Included in the post are pictures of some of the saplings with three months growth. We had mixed results with a few saplings not making it through spring, but many did. We learned a lot about how to plant them and how to better care for them. Next spring we'll do it all again...with even better results...maybe.

Hazelnut Sapling

Oak Sapling

Norway Spruce Sapling

Loblolly Pine Sapling

Sumac Sapling

Persimmon Sapling

Monday, June 7, 2010

Welcome to the Walnut Ridge Farm, Ozark, MO

The Walnut Ridge Farm is located just south of the Ozark, MO city limits. It is 20 acres of waiting to be developed fields with about two acres of trees. We have many ideas, some plans, and a whole lot of creativity. We are thankful that the Lord has blessed us with the land and look forward to making it into our homestead for many years to come. We are a very blessed family with great expectations for the future.

The farm gets its name from all of the walnut trees growing on the southern ridge.