Wednesday, February 1, 2017

What we have been Doing

So it has been awhile since there has been an actual blog. It has been an event filled time off. Firstly Bill's mom Bessie who was on hospice since last winter died the 10th of January. It was a long stress filled time but we managed to keep her home until the end.
Almost immediately my dad went into the hospital. He is home now recovering.
We've had sick sheep, pregnant sheep and some new lambs. This is Belladonna's new ram lamb and yes he is as small as he looks.

We have 13 more sheep that are due to lamb in the next couple of weeks. Several of them are the St. Croix sheep that Slow Food gave us a grant for 2 years ago. The green stripes are marking the sheep who have yet to deliver. It makes for a lot of trips to the barn to make sure everyone is faring okay.

Even with all of this going on, we managed to get more done to the greenhouse. Our final wall of the greenhouse has been finished with sliding glass doors. We found our last set on Craigslist last weekend. So now all the side walls open up for ventilation and are more efficient in transmitting light.

                                        This end is the greenhouse side of the structure a 12x12 space that was the first section that we built. We used semi clear corrugated plastic roofing to make the walls. It worked, but they were not very efficient for keeping the heat in or for light. Now that this end is done, we are working on Solarizing the entire thing. The other end is our High Tunnel where we planted the citrus.

This was a pic that we took early December immediately after the installation of the infrared heat cables were installed. The trees are all still alive but were stressed from the -5 degree temps that we had here We had them covered along with the heating the soil.

Along with this, we are still eating tomatoes that we pulled from the High Tunnel. This picture was taken Sunday and posted on Twitter and Instagram.                                           So it wouldn't take much more to have fresh tomatoes year round.                                                                                     On that end, Dana Roark, mother of Rayven who worked here all summer started a Go Fund Me account called Sunflower Savannah Year Round, for the purpose of collecting what we need to make the high tunnel more efficient and Solar Powered so electricity is not necessary. We still need the Power Station, Pex tubing, Solar Panels, and we want to put a more air tight cover over the whole thing. Remember this was part of a Slow Food grant project. What it will take to make this work in a sustainable manner would also make it possible to produce other crops during a much longer season extension.
Here is the link;

You can also Follow us on Twitter @SunflowerSavannah and Instagram  SunflowerSavannahfarm
The Instagram is a private account but just make a request.

For 2017 our goals are to start food Plots for the sheep using organic ground covers and root crops that will feed the sheep and the soil as well as loosen it. we're hoping to get the lamb to market more quickly this way.
We have started seeds and greens already. Bringing back some tomato favorites and of course there will be some new varieties. Keeper varieties from last year are thanks to Mike Brabo of Vesterbrook Farm cleaning out his seed box; Cherokee Green and Arkansas Traveler. I am also going to try Bradley as it is also one of the Original Arkansas tomatoes. We'll see which one we like best. Let us know if there is any special varieties that you'd like to see at the market.

So that is some of what we have been up to. Let us know what you have been up to.

God's Blessings on you and yours,


Sam and Bill

Angelica- How many lambs do you think are in here?


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