Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Pea Killer and Ice Chipper

After seeing that something ate half my pea plants, chomped down on the beet tops and pulled most of the teeny-tiny carrots out of the soil, I decided to say flip-it and didn't bother covering up the raised beds.  It got down to the twenties on Sunday night and sixteen degrees last night, so there were no survivors. Not that there was much in there, but I was hoping to get something edible out of that bed.

I'm wondering if I should bother trying to grow something in the hoop houses again.  The weather has been pretty wonky lately.  There were several close-to-80 degree days last week which made me want to start tilling up soil and tossing in seeds, but then the forecast plummeted down to well-below-freezing and I knew that the thin sheet of plastic covering my raised beds wouldn't be able to protect the new seedlings.

I also had to scoop ice crystals out of the water buckets yesterday morning for the first time.  And this morning I had to actually chop a 1" thick layer of ice out and haul hot water to the goats & chickens.  I hate The Days of Ice Chipping.  I'm contemplating putting a heated water bucket outside.....but that means I'd have to find it first.  I broke down and bought one last winter and of course, the temperature never really got down low enough for ice to accumulate in the water buckets more than a half-dozen times.  And for whatever reason, the goats were insistent on continually dumping the stupid bucket over.  That and the fact that they like to play with the cord doesn't bode well for the heated bucket this year.   Ungrateful buggers.

Since the wood stove is going to be cranked all day today (only supposed to get to 44 today), I may as well start thinking about supper.  Maybe some soup or stew or chili.  Hmmmm......decisions, decisions.


  1. You let us know what you're making and I will come with fresh biscuits or cornbread to go with dinner.
    All three of these meals are great for the cold weather.

  2. I had to chip ice this morning too! The goats were staring at their water bucket like "where's the water woman" LOL!!!! I covered my garden the last two nights. I didn't realize it was going to get this stinkin' cold! I hope everything survives ☺
    I'm thinking bean chowder for supper! It always warms us up!

  3. I finally broke down and put a big heated water bucket (16 gal) with the sheep/llamas - who are easier on cords. I have a smaller heated bucket with the goats, but it's chancy. If Chickie gets bored, he rips the cord out of the outlet. Ungrateful bugger is right. I put the chicken waterer on a stand heater and that pretty much keeps the ice-chopping at bay. Not the electric bill, however.

  4. I love cooking on the wood stove, it is one of my favorite things about winter. I'm sure you will come up with something yummy! (ps- we have ice, too!)

  5. Yep, it's definitely Ice Chipping Season. As for having anything left alive after the past couple of freezing nights... My chives look sad but I can't believe I've still got cilantro growing. After the heat this summer and the early frost we had in October our fall garden kinda fell... There's always next year though right? LOL
    Have a Super Day!!

  6. I'd say you hung on pretty long! I used to do lettuces in a hoop house but after 2 years of collecting shredded plastic I'm done. The coastal winds here are just too much for any contraption I have and can't afford a real greenhouse so I just "let it go" LOL

  7. I was miffed that my plans for an extended fall garden got chewed up by the critters but I figure we can start the Spring garden earlier than most so who cares about Fall...(shrug)

    Your weather is heading our way tonight! No ice yet this winter, though. That's what we get mostly here...Ice. Yuck!

  8. This is an amazing easy and delicious soup- it's the Famous Barr (now Macy's) french onion soup. You can see the recipe on my blog. It uses paprika, swiss cheese and french bread. You melt the cheese all over everything until it's gooey! http://movingontothepast.blogspot.com/2011/01/soups-on-french-onion-with-paprika.html

  9. We had to break ice in the goat water bucket this morning too. It was pretty nipply when I was milking the goat, even in the milking shed.
    I'm trying to come up with something for dinner using pork loin and sweet potatoes...