Monday, September 22, 2008

What I learned this this weekend #1

Good day friends!

I hope you are all enjoying this first day of fall which started at 10:44 am today. This weekend has been all about fall stuff. First I went apple picking at the local u-pick orchard which was disappointing. Oh the apples are good, but since they changed ownership the atmosphere of the place has also changed. They are making it so commercialized now it's ridiculous. Soon it will be another Disney land. I may have to go farther to get my apples because I don't think I'll go there ever again. Not only did they jack up the price of their apples to more per lb. then they are at the stores, they now make you PAY just to pick the apples........ Nope, not going back.

But Sunday, I had a grand time! I went to the harvest fest at the Indiana Dunes National Lake shore. I did a short hike and then took a tour of the old farm house, the organic garden and checked out all the booths that were demonstrating old ways of homesteading chores.

I spent some time talking with a bee keeper who had a hive there (empty of bees for safety sake) and watched as he took a steam knife that was heated by hot water over a fire to the hive frames to cut off the waxy part so he could put the frames in a centrifuge. Next, we spun the frames until the honey came out, and drained through a spout at the bottom. I got to taste the fresh honey right there. This honey was goldenrod honey and very yummy. I learned that each hive could make a HUGE amount of honey, but that since everywhere was getting built up, open places were being mowed and people don't plant flowers as much that what the hives used to make in honey has diminished a great deal. I've also learned that hive die offs haven't effected this area much at all and that some bee farmers are refusing to take their hives to farms that use a lot of chemicals anymore because they are afraid of the risk to their bees. An interesting thing I learned is that buckwheat (the cover crop I am using) makes a very strong black honey that a lot of people don't like.

I learned a lot from each of the booths, and I figure I can reflect on each thing in different posts.
I'm glad I went and had a lot of fun.

Today I took my spare roses and peppermints to Deep River park, where they were having a plant swap meet. I only managed to give away a couple of peppermints but the roses all went. I received some bulbs, toad lily clumps, ferns, spearmint, edible sage, ornamental basil, a couple tulip tree seedlings ( I figure I could try to have fun with them and grow them as minis), obedient plant, and some sunflower seeds.

Well, it's time for me to go.

Nice chatting with ya,


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