August Farmer's Journal is it summer yet?

Panama, NY(Zone 5a)

We actually had a hot, humid summer day this past week - went 36 hours without rain! Stan got so excited by it that he's putting fuel in the tractor to go mow the last of the second cutting. I may get out and do some gardening after the dew dries a bit.

We took our elder grandchildren to the county fair yesterday. We hadn't been since their mother was a kid, but there were lots of kids showing and selling that we and the gks knew, so we went up for most of the day. DGS, who is 14 and quite the hunk, actually had a girl drag him away from us to show him her animals. He had a rather sheepish grin when his grandfather asked who she was, it was cute. DGD got to see some friends and look at bunnies. She just got a little black bunny.

I can't say that the produce impressed me much, but with the weather we've had, it was amazing that there was any there at all. The whole fair, with the exception of the 4H program seemed a little sad in comparison to what I remember. I think the committee has gotten a little ingrown, if you know what I mean.

Need to get some bread set and make some cookies, just in case anyone shows up to do chores tonight.

Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

If hot days = summer, then we have it! A couple of 96s and not much of our usual cool down with a nice breeze in the evening. Today seems a bit cooler, 80 at noon, compared to 95 yesterday when we came out of the church. We had lunch at a restaurant with a nice cool dining room. Ahhh!

This morning I helped the neighbor sort sheep and choose which ones go to the slaughterhouse today, and which ones are the replacement lambs. He sold most of the lambs a couple of weeks ago. He has had the usual frustrating haying season, which was first delayed a couple of weeks by wet weather, and in the last few by various equipment breakdowns. My hubby could be swathing a field today, IF the swather was running. That won't happen today because the neighbor has to take the load of lambs to the slaughter house about 120 miles away. It handles organic meat, and does those animals first on certain days of the week. The neighbor has orders for locker lambs for that load.

Last week when I was riding out in the hills, trying to go early to beat the heat, I encountered 2 rattlesnakes on the same morning, about 1/2 a mile apart. The first one rattled and crawled away, the second was sleeping in the jeep road and I spotted him before we got close, so we turned around, collected half a dozen fist sized rocks and attempted to kill him, but didn't have good aim with a moving target, so he crawled under a sagebrush. We moved to the other tire track and went past him, then encountered the same snake crossing the road going in the other direction when we came back. The rattlers are another sign that summer is here.

Our county fair is going on. I might go later this week when hubby is gone on a fishing trip. Small county, small fair, I don't expect to see much but should go to support it.

Waddy, KY

I think it's going to be summer for the next few days. They're calling for dry weather. I've still not gotten those potatoes planted. If if does dry up by Sunday I'm going to get them in the ground. I doubt that they'll get very big but they sure aren't going to do anything sitting in the sack in my MIL's basement! Will probably plant a row of beans too. Maybe we'll have a late frost and I can get a couple pickings off them. I still need a few more to can.

We're supposed to be accepted into another farmer's market according to one of the board members but no one's contacted us about showing up yet. That's one of the bigger markets in the state so I'd like to give it a try. I'd be willing to give up a couple of the smaller markets if we can get the same income coming in from one.

DD is, at age 25, getting her tonsils out tomorrow. She's a little apprehensive about it. You'd think that after she had her brain surgery three years ago the tonsils wouldn't phase her but she's heard everyone saying how horrible it is so I doubt that she'll sleep much tonight. They do it as an OP now so she'll probably be home in her own bed by late afternoon. I've bought her some pineapple sherbet. I hope it works.

I've been canning pickled beets. #2 DD brought in a couple grocery sacks of lovely pickling cucumbers on Monday so I made pickles last night. I sent the gifter a loaf of Blueberry Pumpkin bread to the lady she got them from in return. Needless to say, I'll take some more if she wants to send them my way! My cucumbers didn't do all that well this year. Better luck next year....

Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

Yesterday we had several quick thunderstorms move through, lost power for several hours, and even got some rain. My neighbor said 1/4 inch at his house, which isn't hardly a drop in the bucket for most of you, but in the summer, that is a lot of rain here. My neighbor has a lot of hay baled and waiting to be picked up out of the fields, so I called him and offered to help roll bales over or stand them up if it is needed to dry them. Standing them up would be making an A frame out of 2 or 3 so the air can get to all sides. Hopefully he can get them picked up and into a stack before it rains again.

I gave my endurance horse a good workout on the hills in the heat, then brushed him and untangled his mane while he cooled and ate some grain with vitamins and electrolite salt in it, not enough to hardly taste, but it was easier than putting it into a big syringe with water and squirting it into his mouth like we do at the rides. My neighbor came by and says he thinks the hay will dry ok without having to roll the bales or stand them up, that is if we don't get more rain. More thunderstorms are in the forecast, but sometimes they go around us.

Last night I woke up and smelled smoke, got up to see if I could tell where the fire was but couldn't see anything. This morning I saw it, 20 or 30 miles away, behind a ridge. The wind was bringing that smoke a long ways, and we still had some low clouds so I couldn't see a glow. Yep, it's forest fire season in the west, another sure sign of summer.

Sapello, NM(Zone 5b)

Anybody have any hints on how to get a good crop of beets going? Something (or maybe many things) keeps coming along and biting them off as soon as they pop their heads up... out of a 5 foot row I might manage to get 5 beets. I'm getting frustrated.

because I surely do love pickeled beets... =od

Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

It sounds like maybe some kind of little bugs. Try spraying the row with garlic water, before they come up. The critters might not like garlic.

Sapello, NM(Zone 5b)

Maybe the bugs won't but I got eye-talian gophers who adore garlic.
Anybody tried diatomaceous earth? I've been thinking about that.

Lewisville, MN(Zone 4a)

Deer love beets! We fence ours with electric fence or wouldn't have any.

Waddy, KY

Flea beatles also love beets. Especially small ones. Sevin spray should take care of that for you. Flea beatles are little black bugs that jump pretty much like fleas do. You should be able to see them hopping away when you disturb the foliage.

Got the potatoes planted Sunday. They probably won't make but they sure weren't going to do anything sitting in MIL's basement. Planted 4 rows of beans. That should make me everything that I want to can plus some to sell if they make before frost. While I was at it I managed to get a corneal abrasion by leaning down to move a garden row market that we'd thrown up under a pine tree. My eye managed to make contact with one of the branches and talk about ugh! Felt like somebody dumped a truckload of sand in the eye. Felt the same way Monday morning so we went to the eye doctor. With the eyes and nose constantly running yesterday I ended up with a wonderful headache and upset tummy. At least we feel 1000% better today. Cornea's must be able to repair themselves very quickly. Thank goodness.

Got to pick blackberries and okra tonight. We got more rain last night. It's supposed to rain this afternoon then good weather for a while. Maybe we can get the rest of the hay cut. I think we've only got one cutting up without getting rained on so far this year....


Sapello, NM(Zone 5b)

Yep, I got flea beetles. What's an organic control?

Waddy, KY

Don't know. You'd have to look. Tobacco canvas maybe?

Monroe, WI(Zone 4b)

Jeez, did I post on last month's thread. What a dweeb I am. :>(

Panama, NY(Zone 5a)

Yeah, right after I did - and I started this thread! LOL, dweeb - dairy woman entirely ever behind!

Sapello, NM(Zone 5b)

Tobacco canvas? That's a new one. Off I go to search....

Biggs, KY(Zone 6a)

It's been raining every day or every other day for weeks here. Everything is muddy. My maters are starting to rot. I have gotten some into jars to save seeds from. My beans are done and they did very well. Pulled up the huckleberries that did well but tasted like insecticide. Won't be planting those again. Garlic did well until the lettuce smothered it. I have lots of seed for fall planting and I have sets for winter onions. Peppers are still doing good as are the cukes. I have a few watermelons and canteloupes on the vines. Carrots did great. Strawberry plants look awesome but didn't set much fruit. I'll have them in a bed next year instead of a barrel. I don't think they got enough sun. Potatoes were a bust. My yard peas are making a second go of it. I have lots of blooms on my banana melon but no fruit has set yet. Have an eggplant on one bush.

Waddy, KY

Jay, try Reemay row cover. Us 'baccer growers just referred to it as tobacco canvas.

Got the blackberries and okra picked last night before I started baking. They're starting to slow down. Got 3 gallons. I suspect a couple more pickings and they'll be history. The raspberries are starting to bloom for a fall crop. If I don't get the mower over there I won't be able to find them or the daylily field either for that matter. This is the first time in several years that we haven't been begging for rain this time of year. Our tomatoes are starting to come on. I got 2 five gallon buckets Sunday. Most of them will go in salsa for market. We've still got about 4-5 rows of potatoes to dig. They didn't do to bad considering I never got them side dressed.

I would love to get my cabbage and broccoli in the ground tonight. With the recent rain hopefully I won't have to water them when I plant. We got the ground worked just before it rained so we'll just plant them like we do when we reset tobacco.

As for being behind.... I don't think the dairy maids have cornered the market!!!!!!

Sapello, NM(Zone 5b)

Oh! Is that it? I've got that... last time I tried laying it over the planted seeds, and I think it encouraged the crawlers to come dine. This time I put it up on hoops and I think that's the ticket... doesn't encourage the crawlers and helps keep the seed bed moist to allow the seedlings to pop up. I'm also dusting with diatomaceous earth just in case...

Now I've got earwigs in my corn... grrr.

Monroe, WI(Zone 4b)

Who doesn't have earwigs in ANYTHING????

Sapello, NM(Zone 5b)

I think maybe I don't have earwigs in my eggplants... there's just too many other lovely things, the little buggers are getting picky.

Monroe, WI(Zone 4b)

Well, the 2nd cut direct seeding and the 3rd cut alfalfa are all chopped and in the bag as of about 4:30 this afternoon. On to the next insurmountable chore..........:>)

Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

My farm calendar page for August shows a guy looking at an old broken down trailer, and he's saying "You loan it out so much it's gettin in such bad shape I'm afraid to borrow it anymore".

Sapello, NM(Zone 5b)


Panama, NY(Zone 5a)

Hey - that's OUR trailer, well until Stan did the remake on it this past spring. The guy up the road uses it more than we do, and we use it a lot!

Biggs, KY(Zone 6a)

My garden is about all done. I pulled up the mater plants yesterday in the big patch. The rain had them all rotting. The pigs had a feast. I potted my 2 eggplants to try and move them to the new house. I hope they make it. I'd have lost them anyway so it won't hurt to try. Glad I had to plant some stuff in pots when I ran out of room. Got the mater seeds fermenting to save. Hope to get beds made soon at the new house for my winter stuff.

I'll be off line a while after today. Moving the puter and don't know how long it will take me to get hooked back up. Please say a prayer for us.

Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

Oh, moving, groan! I hope it goes smoothly and you have plenty of help. We miss you, so I hope you aren't gone long.

Waddy, KY

I reckon this has got to be one of the coolest August's we've had in I don't remember when. Usually by now I'm baking breads in a sauna with the ceiling fan running and a box fan in the window. This year we've maybe had a weeks worth of that type of weather.

We've started another market in Lexington. It's well supported by the local population and we appear to be one of the few that sell baked goods. I think we'll probably give up one or more of the smaller markets for this one. With economic times as they are we need to sell at markets where we can move the most product, not spend our money on gas and time going to multiples.

The tomatoes are finally starting to do something. I'm getting enough to sell plus making salsa. I've thrown multiple bags in the freezer for making salsa later as I don't have enough time to process them all now. My peppers were ate by the deer so I'll pick up come peppers while they're cheap and get them in the freezer for later too.

Has anyone heard how Cajun's move is going?

Paris, TN(Zone 6b)

Happy moving Cajun!! If things go right, I will be too soon :)

Kydaylily - I'll send you the heat from here if you want it, although it's cooled down nicely again.

southeast, NE

Good evening all!

Thank you all for the kind thoughts about our dog. We really miss her. The last couple of years she slept in the garage. I still expect her to meet me at the door in the mornings and meet me when I come home. I really realized how much we missed her when dh and I sorted out some lambs to sell. DH kept telling me where to go, etc. I objected when he gave me the "down" order.

BIL's cousin died of a heart attack. You will recall she was only 45 and died in her sleep.

We had a nice rain yesterday (.85).

We're going to chop silage this weekend. We've hired it done in the past but dh decided to dig out the old chopper and do it himself. DD & SIL are supposed to help.

Crops are expected to yield record highs this year. Naturally corn is down to 2.80 a bushel. I grumbled several years ago when dh plowed in some corn ground to plant alfalfa. Definitely glad he did.

Our clearance 50 Rhode Island reds are laying about 30 mini eggs per day. DH's coworkers are buying all our eggs. Everyone loves them. The only exception was the wife of one of his coworkers found blood in one egg and threw the whole dozen away.

The Nebraska State Fair starts tomorrow. It is the last year it is being held in Nebraska. It is being moved to Grand Island next year. A lot of the buildings at the present site were getting run down, etc. The University of Nebraska wanted the site for a research facility. We'll try to get the fair next weekend. My nephew is showing his heifers.

Better sign off and get to bed. You all take care!

Monroe, WI(Zone 4b)

How stupid can someone get tossing a whole dozen eggs because of 1 that had a blood spot. I just take a spoon and try and get the spot out; if it is in the yolk, it gets cooked up for the cats anyway, as we don't eat the yolks. Our barn cats have the nicest, shiny fur. LOL We eat a dozen eggs a day. I do toss the white too, tho, if it seems off color and bloody. But the cats get that too. :>)

Lewisville, MN(Zone 4a)

Our cats get all the cracks when we are washing the eggs. They dive right in!
Another good day at market.
After Saturday market we are heading to Wisconsin to visit with Maxine on Sunday. Another of the fine people we have met on this site. They were dairy farmers before they retired. They had Registered Holsteins, so we have lots in common.
Staying in Red Wing, MN Sat night. Might sneak over to the casino.

Rain has become common around here & is making a huge crop of corn. Some say it could be best ever.
Our garden crops are terrific this summer. Just the right amount of moisture & not overly hot. Watermelon is suburb!
Huge & lots of flavor!
Been picking little picklers almost every day. They sell fairly well, except we have so many. Lots of ladies buying bushel at a time.

Bedtime, I guess,

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