Saturday, June 12, 2010

New Look to the Blog


How is it?

I like it better than what I had before, but it seems to take a lot longer to load. My dashboard kept telling me it had something wonderful for me to try, but it was not working so wonderfully. The preview at the bottom never did load.

Not sure if it will stay this way, I was just playing with it.

Don't you love the Sweet Pea time of year?

We loaded up our 'tractor and trailer'. It's our giant rig, ready to take on the care and husbandry of our little corner of the great big creation.

First stop, planting some cukes and zuchs we got on sale at Lowe's, replacing the ones that have not grown. My cuke seeds from last year did not sprout at all, and the squash bugs have done in about half our zucchini plants.

I love these beds. You walk down, pull the mulch away, drop the plant in, and you are done. Cukes...

Putting in the zuchini...

Then it was down to the barn to give aid to the horses.

We let the chickens out in the barnyard. There are our two surviving chicks from the broody hen. We have too many eggs, so we didn't want many anyhow.

The face flies have been awful this year. Of course, now that I took the camera down the horses kept shaking their heads, so you can't see the hundreds of flies that cover their faces, encircling their eyes, and making them miserable. Here's Ginny, our very clever, mischievous, and trouble-making filly.

Bronco does not even make a dent! I put this on and if fifteen minutes the flies are back in full force.

So I bought the big guns. Well almost. I bought the medium guns, because the big guns are 30 dollars a bottle.

Here is a roll-on that is supposed to last for days. If I can keep the flies off their faces for a few days, even through sweat and rain, I'll be satisfied. The bottles are 10 dollars each.

We also bought these drop applicators. You dribble a few CCs here and there every couple of weeks and I believe the product enters their system, making them less tasty for pests. I've used it in the past and it was helpful. I think this package was about 25 dollars. It should last 6 weeks for the two of them.

The roll-on seemed to help right away. I'll let you know how it goes when I check them again. Time to change out the water.

Then it was time to prune and spray grapes. Michael took a break to bring the kiwi vines up across the arbor.

Whew! Need an iced tea break. It's hot, muggy and uncomfortable out here!

The black rot.

And we've got some sort of mold, mildew, fungus, or something. Front and back...

This meant a trip to the Ag Extension office. The Japanese beetles are all over, so we sprayed the grapes and fruit trees.

Lots of grapes. But will we get a harvest? I may rip them all out and plant Mars only. A blue seedless, resistant to black rot.

Thursday night we were back to our usual schedule.

Young people having fun before the guys head off to their class.

And the girls began a class for themselves.

We discovered that the game Mad Gab is remarkably similar to trying to communicate with a very persistant eighteen month old.



  1. I DO like the new blog look, very fresh and summery looking.
    The flies would drive me berserk....even to just SEE them on the horses like that.
    Gardening is NOT so cheap, eh? By the time I get what I want in the ground I feel like I have to go back and see what kind of pest is eating what I first planted. EVIL japanese beetles.

  2. I like the new look as well! It looks....well, yes Cyn hit it right on the nose...fresh! And great post by the way! Your making me look bad..haha. I just have NOT been in a blogging mood lately. hmmm...maybe I will be when T. goes back to work...IDK.. Have a Blessed Day!

  3. Nice bloglook, its nice and summery. It took me a number of tries to settle on a theme and color scheme, but it is fun to play with.

    That stuff in the individual tubes must be similar to a Frontline product for horses, hopefully it works.

    That black rot looks nasty, are there any fungicide sprays you can use on them?
    The white stuff looks like downy mildew.
    Some of my grapes are susceptible to BR so i will have to be diligent. I am using Bonide fruit tree spray on my remaining apple and its approved for controling mildew and BR on grapes too, since they are close together i will just treat them all at the same time. I wanted to be more organic, but for now i just want to get things established.
    I'm still new to grape ownership, and all my 'knowledge' is from reading only, but i wonder if you thin your clusters down a good deal, the vines might wind up with more stamina to hold up under the weather conditions and fend off the fungus better.

    I hates Japanese Beetles too, uggh! But i'm going to try the white geranium trick. It just so happenes that a kind person sent us a big pot of them in honor of my Grampy, so i happily took it home and i plan to propagate many extras by taking cuttings.

    How are the kiwi fruits coming? They were just starting out when you last posted pics of them, i hope they are still looking good.

  4. I really do like the new look. Very fresh.

    Oh no, your poor grapes! We cut those suckers back really far too :-(

    We did sound like a bunch of kids the other night, didn't we? See you soon- Love~

  5. I like the new look! Very relaxing and calm....
    We've had problems with our grapes too... not sure what we're doing wrong.
    Have a good weekend!

  6. Cyn,

    I guess one can get used to just about anything, but yeah, all those legs crawling and mouths sucking all over your eyes....? It's awful even thinking about it!

    I'm getting a new pest control spray that is supposed to last longer, so should save money. I'll post about it next week.



  7. SBF,

    I get in those moods once in a while as well, but there's no way I can make you look bad. You do too much!


  8. Icebear,

    I'm pretty sure it's the same kind of stuff, too. I wonder if they make any for humans to keep the gnats away?

    You are right about the mildew. It's either downy or powdery. None was found on grapes yet, but the co-op was out of fungicide. People are buying it up like crazy. They are holding some for me on the next shipment. I hope something is left. It's really warm, and raining every day. Not good for the grapes.

    You are also right about thinning them. We finally had a chance to get out there and do about 4 rows so far. Hopefully we can finished today or tomorrow.

    I tried organic for several years. I tried every natural trick in the book, read every book on the subject. I could not do it here. The bug and disease load is just too great. Sad.

    The kiwi did not fruit after all. It was odd, as they sure did look like they had the swelling of baby fruit after blossoming. But those simply went away. I have to figure out whether they are 'male or female' and buy the opposite.


  9. Leah,

    We sure did! This is partly my fault. I was relying so much on all the work we did last year. I knew spraying for BR was going to be expensive, so I didn't buy it. I am now, but it's probably too late for the grapes. It will be good for the fruit trees though.


  10. Beth,

    Just probably not spraying enough. If your vines have something different than what mine have, you can take a leaf down to the Ag. Extension office and they'll identify it for you.

    But I think CAPTAN takes care of most things.


  11. I wanted to offer you a much less expensive choice for your horses fly control...this works best in the ears, around the eyes, under the chin and even between their legs. It is Noxema-type skin cream! We have used it for about 25 years (can't remember where I first heard of it) and you can even use the "dollar store" brand, it works just fine. You know, the stuff in the blue jar? It doesn't hurt their skin and it works well for many different bugs, even deer flies. Of course, don't get it in their eyes or nostrils. We even use it on ourselves if it doesn't irritate your skin. Give it a try and see what you think!

  12. Hi Cary!

    Thank you. I will give that a try! :o)



I always enjoy hearing from others. If you become a regular commenter, I'll assume you are being friendly and pretty much comment regularly right back. :o) God bless and have a terrific day!