Monday, December 26, 2011

December Blooming Oak Tree

Taken December 24, 2011

What a perplexing tree! I discovered the new leaves on the tree and I got to work examining this tree and the two trees closest to it. I could not find another blooming tree on the property. The two trees next to it are dormant. The tree to the south still has dead leaves on it. The tree to the north has dropped all the dead leaves.  I was perplexed about the out of season bloom so I did a search for reputable articles about out of season blooming and discovered that the most likely culprit is the drought this summer. I did have a few trees go dormant during the drought, although this particular tree did not. We had a rather wet mid to late fall so the tree was “tricked” into an out of season bloom. I am going to keep an eye on this tree for the next few seasons and see exactly what will happen. I have heard some predictions by family members about what might happen to it some have said it is going to die; some have said it will always bloom out of season now. My prediction in its internal clock will reset itself at some point in the near future and it will have a lovely spring bloom and be just fine.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Tell All, catch up June- December!

So Much to tell!

The well house is almost completely finished and it is functioning! We build a well house that I believe would appraise at $3,000 without considering the $2,000 worth of equipment that lives there! It is beautiful! Green with grey trim was the colors I ended up going with. Outside it also has two small windows, two window flower boxes, a cupola with a rooster wind vane installed, a composition roof, and exterior walls are hardy board (cement board) a great fire proof weather durable option (after all this is Oklahoma!)!.  Inside it now has the pump sunk the pressure tank installed, the water opener installed, a wireless temperature monitoring system, electricity (of course) and had enough room left for a refrigerator and a deep freeze! There are a few things that I would like to be completed. Not all the walls were insulated with the interior walls put in. We just ran out of time and money. As time has gone on I have purchased these things and slowly being put together. We did hit a snag. We had bought a used pump and pressure tank. While the pressure tank worked great the pump did not. I had to buy a brand new one. The waterlines that were previously in use with the burn out trailer were no longer viable. We had to lay all new lines. We had them dug at the same time we had the new septic lines and the electric lines dug. We also had a frost free yard spout installed at the same time. By far the well house has been the most work out of all of the projects we have had for the new place!
The Well house to date

Waterline dig

Finding the house for the property was also a difficult task. Originally I had wanted to buy a used mobile home for the property. One that I could pay cash for. I stopped by a sale lot and was talked into a new one. Well in the end it did not work out. But that is ok. The day I got my down payment back a post on Stillwater Craig’s list led me to the mobile home I ended up purchasing in cash! It was smaller than what I needed by two bedrooms and closets. So additions are in the near future. I had it moved onto the property in August and was living here full time by late September. The work we did on it before we moved in was mostly cosmetic. I painted the ceilings and walls. The hot water tank needed to be converted for the all electric needs we have out here in the sticks. The main hold up was getting electric lines dug and installed, as well as the water difficulties we were having. I would like to paint the outside of the home however I am conflicted about waiting till the additions are done and the new siding is installed or just doing it right now so it’s prettier.

Moving took two whole months! Why? Well the mobile home is smaller than the Piedmont house in bedroom size only so my outbuildings had to be moved. And that takes big money! In August my Piedmont property was hit by a microburst and we had a lot of damage, including the destruction of one of my outbuildings, my garden shed! As you can imagine I was devastated! Not to mention all the patio bricks and ect that were moved in what seems like a million loads! Over 500 1x1’s alone! Everything was moved by Halloween!

The Piedmont "microburst" that hit my old house
yes it looks like a tornado, felt like one too!
final load!

Fall Foliage pics of the property! Simply beautiful out here!
a small clearing in the woodlot

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Plans for the future

Gardening In the Future

We will start gardening slow. I have some main house additions that must take priority. The soil quality is less desirable in the area so just to make it easier in the long run we are going to raise beds. I do have some plans already for a large essential herb garden and have started the process of planning the short and long turn fruit and vegetable garden. More about those plans in the future. I will need a few gardening buildings as well. I want a small drying room for the herb garden, a garden shed for gardening supplies and a green house for obvious reasons.  Sounds ambitious I know but I own this property and could be gardening here for the rest of my life and as it is the cornerstone of my self sufficiency plan for my family. Here is a look at my compleeted plans for Essential Herbs:

herb name first aide garden cold and flue garden tea garden kitchen garden
sage     x x
pepermint   x x x
spearmint   x x x
oregano       x
Marjoram       x
terragon       x
Lemon balm     x x
rosemary   x x x
chives       x
upright thyme       x
lemon thyme       x
burnet       x
french thyme       x
thyme   x    
garlic cloves   x    
cayanne pepper   x    
yarrow x x    
echinacea   x    
anise hyssop     x  
basil     x x
calendula x   x  
cat nip     x  
chamomile     x  
lavendar     x  
lemon gem marigolds     x  
orange gem marigolds     x  
lemon verbena     x  
monarda     x  
pinapple sage     x  
sented geraniums     x  
chick weed x      
plantain x      
aloe x