...really right around the corner. Fall is here and the spooky thing that is right around the corner is winter. Our weather here in Ky is going to turn colder this weekend. Something tells me we have but very few more nice warm days left this fall. Knowing this we have been trying to get little things done an loose ends tied up so to speak. I have most all the peppers picked off an taken care of now, I hope. This is what I faced last weekend. We picked 3 bushels total of ripe an green bell peppers.
So with Rodgers help I cut the peppers and took out the seeds and he ran them thru the food processor with the slicing blade in place and put the sliced peppers in the dehydrator. That batch was done by Monday evening and we did more on Monday and reloaded the dehydrators. Those finished on Tuesday and I quit! I am done with peppers.We took care of 1 1/2 bushels of bells. The jalapenos were deseeded and put in the freezer for poppers later on. I had nearly 1 1/2 bushels of peppers left an Rodgers sister and a friend of ours took those. IF we don't get frost soon there will still be more peppers as the plants have many really small ones on and still blooming. I have totally stopped messing with cayenne peppers because I have 2 gallon dried an that is enough to do me 5 years or more.
On Sunday as I was cleaning the peppers Rodger cleaned out the hen house. It was not bad in need of cleaning it was just time to clean it out before cold weather comes. Besides we want to use the manure to mix in with the soil to get the grapevines off to a good start. Those need to be in the ground asap so they can get established before frost knocks em back.
With the frost warnings an cold weather headed our way its a race to get the sweet potatoes dug before the cold gets here. They will still have to cure so at night they will need to be covered with a tarp or something to prevent them from freezing. Hay or straw will also work if it is removed during the warm part of the day so the taters dry well and the skins toughen up. Then they can be stored away for winter in a dry cool place about 50 degrees. Sweet taters do not keep in a root cellar due to high humidity.
We used most of the straw we had for bedding in the chicken house after Rodger got it cleaned out. He put all the manure in the tractor bucket to take it to the garden and pile it so it can compost and some be used in planting grapevines and probably making another raspberry patch.
I like having my chicken house in the backyard for several reasons. One is the chickens can be close and have some protection from predators. Luna keeps a close eye on them here. It is easier for me to see to their feed and water in bad weather as well. Not to mention caring for the little ones. The momma hens do a good job of teaching the lil ones how to scratch for food. AND I get to enjoy the lil fellers as they grow up.
The little one above is ducking back under his momma where it is nice an toasty on this cool evening.
The one chick in the back is under his momma sleeping and he is a good size fellow too. The dorkin in the front has 2 babies, one of which is the white one standing, an she has also adopted one that was weaned already. She just took up with this hen an her lil ones.
They didn't know what to think of a house with a naked floor. They got busy moving the straw around after I got it put on the floor all neat like. I keep a pitchfork handy to fluff the straw daily so they have a fresh layer. Next spring when we take this manure an straw out of the chicken house it will be very fine and perfect to go in the garden as the chickens have pecked all the seeds from it.
I spent most of today making a big batch of chili to can up. That got some of the peppers out of the freezer. I ended up with 13 quarts of chili ready to heat an eat. How convenient , huh?
I will be going to a get together this weekend in central KY for homesteaders and folks that want to become more self sufficient. I am taking a couple quarts of chili with me to have out there for lunch among other goodies to eat. I will be doing a chicken butchering demo and a soap making demo on Saturday. I think we are also butchering a goat for the family who is hosting the event. Several folks are interested in learning how to do butchering. So hopefully some new folks can go home satisfied that they learned a new skill. Rosie will also be showing us how to make salves and tinctures using native herbs. Also she is going to show us how to make paint. Now how cool is that? It is always nice to meet other folks who raise all their food an homestead like we do here. I will also be going to an Amish surplus store nearby there. It is really a neat place to shop. It is kinda like a scratch an dent grocery store. They also stock bulk items like wheat, buttermilk powder, powdered cheese an gallon buckets of coconut oil that is very inexpensive as compared to what we pay near here. I will likely post some photos of the event when I get home. But this is my one weekend this year to go have fun and visit with some friends I have made online thru BHM magazine forum.
So till next time, blessings from the McGuire homestead.