Thursday, September 29, 2022

November Hill farm journal, 166

 Readying for Ian, whatever it may bring our way, which is likely to be a lot of rain and increasing winds. We’re already feeling them today. Keil Bay had his acupuncture and Legend injection in the barn aisle because while we were waiting for his vet, a gust rattled the mower tent and he did a spook and canter in the barnyard. He enjoyed his acupuncture a lot today and had some tricky spots where the needles kept sliding out. But he was licking and chewing and turned to the vet when she finished up and thanked her for the treatment. He’s a sweetheart. 

The scab from his one hock sore is gone and there’s no broken skin (the scab took the fur with it) but I want to have something on hand to use for protection if I need it. I’m in discussion with Sox For Horses to get a pair of hock wraps that should do the trick. 

Oh, the things we seniors deal with! Honestly, I need an inflatable donut to wear that will protect me if I take any more tumbles.

Yesterday I took a walk around the farm with my husband with the promise to self that I was not going to get drawn into any chores. A walk to enjoy what is there already. I made it! Yay! The bees are slowing down a little in population but continue to be busy foraging. They were especially enjoying the swamp sunflowers that are prolific in my upper bed, and they’ll enjoy the asters when they bloom a little later this fall.

The plantings are all doing pretty well. I’ve lost a few things to deer and bunnies, but that’s to be expected.    At this point in the season I’m letting things go for the most part. I’ve pulled out some burnweed as it was dark brown and unsightly among the still-blooming fall season plantings, and I’ll continue a few small chores that keep the beds usable by all the foragers. I still have a large pile of mulch, so I’ll top off some as needed. 

The front walkway is very overgrown at the moment. I’m just not worrying about it for now!

This was one lovely surprise yesterday. This is Spiranthes lacera, I think, but for sure one of the native orchids that love boggy, wetland conditions. It came up on its own - was not planted! - and is being called a miracle by the native plant group I’m in. It is truly lovely, and fits perfectly with the pitcher plants and equisetum I DID plant in this container.

I’m very excited to have it, and hope it remains this happy for years to come. 

Biggest gardening fail is that I never got to the Japanese stiltweed in Poplar Folly and oh it is a mess of this invasive weed. At this point doing anything other than hand pulling and putting in plastic garbage bags will only distribute the seeds more. I may work on this but at the moment I’m just letting it be. There are also a number of large branches that have come down in the Folly and we need to figure out how to use them. On a good note, the inkberry hollies back there are doing really well and are loaded with black berries for the wildlife!

Thinking of hollies and berries, the winterberries I planted in the bird haven bed in the front corner are hanging in there but I think I somehow got all males except for just one female, as I’m only seeing berries on one of the plants. I may have to add a few more females to the mix. Otherwise things are growing. The arrowwood viburnum is doing well, the southern shield ferns are too, and the witch hazel, and several other shrubs also growing. That area will be a nice native thicket if these things keep maturing, with tall trees, a nice understory, and the ground plantings that will hopefully fill in as time passes. 

The upper bed by the house is a huge burst of yellow and purple right now, though you can’t see the asters in this photo.

Not a highly cultivated area, but the firework goldenrod and swamp sunflowers create a sense of movement and abandon that I love. 

That’s about it for today. May we all remain safe through the storm. 


Grey Horse Matters said...

Everything looks lovely and the surprise plant is really pretty. Stay safe during Ian…and try to stay upright for a bit! Just kidding. Good to hear Keil Bay is doing well.

billie said...

We’re getting steady rain that has lasted most of today, and some very gusting winds that make me nervous, but hopefully nothing falls down out there, including ME. :)))

Hope things are good up north, A.