Peppers, Large Yield Crop Focus

Sweet Peppers; Great for Salads

In the past, I did not treasure peppers as the culinary gems they are, but then I discovered restaurants and people who could cook.  The way a pepper is cooked makes 100% of the difference between, “I hate this!” and “I love this.”  While Dan can discuss dishes from a-z and the styles of cooking for each pepper;

I can help you understand what peppers need to grow.  Whatever culinary triumph or disasters you have it won’t be the peppers fault. 🙂

Continue reading Peppers, Large Yield Crop Focus

Grow the Best Sunflowers, Crop Focus

Sunflowers are captivating flowers. They are the topic of multi-million dollar art, the desire of small children looking for a snack, and fun addition to a garden. Homesteaders and livestock owners love sunflowers seeds for feed; Sunflowers in Full Bloomdehulled sunflower seeds are 41% protein.*

Sunflowers are novice plants. There are many things you can do to encourage growth and a successful crop. However, sunflowers will grow under less than desirable circumstances.*

Continue reading Grow the Best Sunflowers, Crop Focus

Dairy Consumption

Milk is Delicious! Understanding, what you eat, and what goes into what you eat; is on of the first steps to being sustainable.

You will find that there are some foods that you will have to buy; other foods may need to be given up altogether. However, milk has always been a small homestead staple. I have calculated the costs and consumption of dairy. Obviously, this will differ region to region and year to year. The chart has a link where you can copy and make your own changes to the chart.
Continue reading Dairy Consumption

Dual Purpose Backyard Chicken Breeds for Cold Climate and High Altitudes

Get the best cold hardy backyard chicken for you. There are chickens that have heart issues.
A chicken from my sister-in-law’s backyard.

True, you can slow chick’s growth down as chicks to prevent health issues.  You can feed them less crude protein or ration their meals.  I’ve even heard of just doing more feedings in a day.  Or you could just get a chicken that’s not going to kill over due to your high altitude which most very cold climate have.

This is a compiled list of cold hardy backyard chicken.  Obviously, I can not include all the options; however, all of these chicken are dual purpose, which means can be eaten, or used as layers. There are a few helpful links at the bottom. Word of warning, avoid Cornish X’s as they will have health problems, to begin with.
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Flockers from the 9th Century

Cold Hardy – Low Maintenance Chickens

Icelandic chickens are a great idea; if, you want a low maintenance flock.  They are the hardiest of animals for cold weather.  No need for fences; as these birds fly well and have a very strong sense of survival.  Build a chicken coop the chickens like.  Are great foragers; Icelandic chicks scavenge and hunt for grub.  You want to provide feed.  This keeps Icies near their roost.  No need for expensive egg incubators.   Viking Hens, are broody and the flock will not -likely need assistance; once you’ve established the population.  Viking hens lay colorful eggs.  You can make omelets or hatch little-speckled chicks.

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Cost of Keeping a Miniature Cow

You need to know what it costs for a miniature cow.

It helps you make an educated decision about having a milk cow on your homestead.
Here is the link to this excel.  You will find the cow cost calculations on the second tab labeled, “Cow Production and Cost”. Continue reading Cost of Keeping a Miniature Cow

How Now Brown Cow

You’ve probably already realized there are several valid reasons for wanting to your own cow.  But do you want an heirloom cow?

It is noteworthy that heirloom cows are miniature cows. Modern cows are the large ones that are used for commercial purposes that you see spotting the countryside.  Commercial growers were obsessed with size.  There are few countries like Australia considering bring back miniature cows for their feed conversion rate alone.  (Conversion rate is the amount of feed you give an animal versus what you get in return such as eggs, milk, or meat)  Here are the biggest reasons to choose an heirloom cow for your farm.

⇒Easier to handle size
⇒More docile and intelligent
⇒Not as susceptible to disease
⇒Higher quality meat
⇒More milk/meat for feed input.
⇒Forage like goats
⇒Lacks the A protein that causes bloating
⇒No need for birthing assistance
⇒Higher conception Continue reading How Now Brown Cow

Perfect Patio Plants; List of Small Container Garden Fruits and Vegetables.

Diversity in a small container gardeN is difficult to accomplish; but not impossible.

These plants are: diverse, high yielding, and great for small space gardens.  All plants can be found at Baker Creek.  You just click on the picture to be redirected.

It is important to understand that a plant’s nutrient will be affected by: soil, fertilizer, pesticides, water, sun exposure and atmosphere.  Just like people their diet and environment will affect them.  Space is not the only thing that needs to be taken into consideration.  Keep in the minding the temperature, lighting, growing days, the growing method, and your own gardening abilities.

With those factors in mind here is the list:

Continue reading Perfect Patio Plants; List of Small Container Garden Fruits and Vegetables.

Why You Should Patio and Small Space Garden

There are many reasons to garden even in a small space.

For example; food prices rise every year.  With corporations continually cutting corners at the cost of quality; growing your own food make sense.

If you feel like its a huge undertaking.  Chill.  I started with nothing more than cardboard boxes, top soil and tomato seeds.  I lived on the second story of a ghetto apartment in Phoenix Metropolitan.  It wasn’t long before I was hooked on having a small space garden.  It doesn’t take much.

Here a few other big ones; that may encourage you to give some serious thought to adding plants to your household. Continue reading Why You Should Patio and Small Space Garden

Popcorn Popping on the Apricot Tree, is Far Less Trippy and Far More Lazy

Popcorn Popping on the Apricot Tree is far less trippy and far more lazy than suspected.

I’m pretty sure the song is about a kid watching blossoms grow on a tree.  There is a stage in a blossoms growth called popcorn.  And that is exactly what
blossoms look like.   It is important to know the stages of tree blossoms.  At different stages of a blossom, you will need to fertilize or prune.  You will note that one of the growth stages of a blossom is called popcorn.

The best simplification, with the most useful compilation of information I have found, is by Fairbanks University.

❂ Topics 


❂ Planting and fertilizing

❂ Irrigating

❂ Fruit thinning

❂ Harvest and handling

❂ Insect and disease management

❂ Pruning

Click here for the full article.

If you are looking for great articles Fairbanks University has several useful studies in agriculture, husbandry, and self-sustainability.