Wednesday, January 21, 2015

New House, New Urban Farm

My new 102 year old house, working on the urban farm. Rabbitry, Aviary and gardens are all up and running aftrer the move and happily producing

Sunday, January 18, 2015

New Zealand Meat Rabbits update

First successful litter.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Juniper Berry Essential Oil-Doterra Product of the Month

Juniper Berry Doterra Essential Oil is the September 2014 Product of the Month.

To purchase, click here

Primary Benefits of Juniper Berry Essential oil are:

  • Supports healthy kidney and urinary function
  • May benefit problematic skin areas
  • Acts as a natural cleansing and detoxifying agent
  • Helps relieve tension and stress 

Juniper Berry 

The woody, spicy, yet fresh aroma of Juniper Berry reveals its rich history of traditional use and therapeutic benefits.

Derived from the coniferous tree, Juniper Berry
essential oil has a rich history of traditional uses
and therapeutic benefits. Juniper Berry acts as a
natural cleansing agent, both internally and externally.
Juniper Berry supports healthy kidney and urinary
function and is very beneficial to the skin. Its
woody, spicy, yet fresh aroma has a calming effect
that helps relieve tension and stress. When diffused,
Juniper Berry helps to cleanse and purify the air.

Diffusion: Use three to four drops in the diffuser of
your choice.
Internal use: Dilute one drop in 4 fl. oz. of liquid.
Topical use: Apply one to two drops to desired
area. Dilute with dōTERRA Fractionated Coconut Oil
to minimize any skin sensitivity. See additional
precautions below.

Possible skin sensitivity. Keep out of reach of children.
If you are pregnant, nursing, or under a doctor’s
care, consult your physician. Avoid contact with
eyes, inner ears and sensitive areas.

Meat Rabbits Adventure

I'm one month into a new adventure in raising my own meat source. I chose rabbits since they are quiet, easy to butcher, legal to own in my area, multiply like rabbits and their manure is extraordinarily useful in my poor soil.

I am raising New Zealand Giant White Rabbits.  Their offspring should be butcher weight at about 10-12 weeks of age.  My goal is to produce 200 pounds of meat per year with my buck and two doe's.  Ideally, next year it will be closer to 400 if I purchase or barter for additional cages. From what I understand that is a very realistic goal if each doe has 4 -5 litters per year which is considered a non-intense breeding schedule.

As always this blog is a record and online diary, so here's a rundown of the costs:

3 Does and 1 Buck: $80  (1 Doe Traded for $20 in colloidal silver so I have 2 does and 1 buck)
4 Cages with feeders and water bottles: $220

Feed: $12 per 50 pound bag, lasts about 1 month
Alfalfa: $12 per bale, lasts around 6 months.
The rabbits will also eat household scraps, and herbs / plants already raised on-site.

My guess is that it will cost approximately $250 per year to raise 200 pounds of meat, giving me a price of $1.50 per pound.

I also estimate it will take me 150-250 hours per year to properly care for the rabbits, including butchering, cleaning, etc.

Monday, July 21, 2014

New Fence and Monarchs!

Our front / side yard vegetable garden is doing well. the raised beds I brought with me from the old house are in, we've harvested a bit of food but I wanted to add a fence to the front area to divide it visually / screen it a bit for the neighbors sake.  As we all know, gardening ain't always pretty so I thought by adding a front fence it would help avoid any possible complaints from the neighbors. (Although seeing as how we bought the empty for years hoarders house the neighbors have been nothing but grateful that we've fixed up the place and we get compliments every week from our neighbors)

So we were at the new Starbucks Drive through and saw some great landscape and fencing panels.  My hubby said he could build it and he did.  Now normally that could be a period of months or years before he feels like getting it done, but this time he had it done in a few hours! Wow!

So here's the new fence.  He used pressure treated lumber since the color and thickness was right and sunk the posts in some quickset concrete.  I love how it turned out

View from the front

View from the Back after we planted milkweed, bay laurel, sedum, etc. and added more bark nuggets to give it a finished look

And look here, just a few weeks later and my milkweed plant is being decimated in a good way by monarchs!  There are at least 30 of them on the plant and it doesn't look very pretty anymore but I can't wait to see the butterflies!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Garden Update Spring 2014

More garden goodness

Artichokes-they are perennial here in Zone 10 but the Santa Ana winds have been pushing them over, so I have plates under the plants kind of propping them up. I think I'll add rocks and gravel around their base to help anchor them from the wind

Annie over the Dragonfly built me these two potted arrangements a few years ago and they are still going strong.  I give the pot a haircut every 8 weeks or so in the spring / summer and less frequently in winter but it's always trying to escape the pot :)

Dusty Miller, Pink Polka Dot Plant, Chocolate Mint, Rosemary all getting lush and full

Late Winter Cabbage, definitely had a few cabbage worms that I had to hunt down and squish!

But we still ate a lot of coleslaw, next year Saurkraut

Kale has gone gangbusters this year!

Our sod is recovered from the horrors of chemicals

And my best friend in the garden :) MooPooTea from Annie Haven

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Chicken Salad Bar 3 Month Update

My hubby built me a Chicken 'Salad' Bar out of scrap lumber and chicken wire a few months ago and here is an update on how it worked.

I used the Omega 3 Forage seed mix from Peaceful Valley and scattered seeds under the wire and watered for a few days.  It grew quickly and very lush and the chickens enjoyed it for about 6-8 weeks before it needed re-planting.  I moved it out of the area, let them dig up the remaining plants and just re-planted it.  I love this because it is a great way for them to get fresh greens when they are locked up in Chicken Park.

The outside of the chicken salad bar is surrounded with random bricks and it is about 6 inches tall which is perfect.  We tried it about 2 inches off the ground but the chickens weight smashed the wire down and they ate the roots of the plants quickly, so lesson learned on that one!