The start sale was a roaring success, I came very close to hitting my sales target (which I honestly had no expectation of actually doing), and I feel like I have gotten a huge vote of confidence and a boost of energy to get this venture launched. Riding that wave I went ahead and registered my business name with the Oregon Secretary of State, and opened my business bank account. Whoohoo! A few things I learned, that I probably already knew: people love tomatoes. My tomato table was wiped out except for a few green zebras in the first hour or so. The greens moved well too, and I had a lot of them. I have a lot of collards and kales left over, but rabbits and chickens love to eat those and so do I, so I am stuffing my city garden with greens of all descriptions and I will just cut and come again on those as long as I can. People like peppers, but mostly prefer sweets to hot. I wish I had had more Padrons and more Beaverdam peppers…and I’d love to get my paws on some Gernika pepper seed. I think I have the best looking garden I have ever had, and we have been eating asparagus almost every day. Delish!
I also caught one of the nicest swarms ever last Friday….I am feeling particularly blessed as I broke even on bees this winter: I lost one hive to Nosema, but was able to split a second hive into two in mid April. The split seems to be doing well, I saw today several queen cells that had hatched open, I gave that colony a frame of brood, eggs and bees just to give them some extra juice (and a back up option if the new queen fails for some reason) from their super strong original hive. The warre looks to be busting at the seams, I expect a swarm from that hive in the next week or two when the weather warms up again (though I don’t expect to catch it! Those tend to be some high flying bees). The local word is that Portland hives were decimated over the winter, maybe as bad as 50-75% losses according to some. So as I said, I am feeling really lucky that my bees are for the most part doing well. Hopefully we can get them moved to the farm before the main honey flow begins! I was hoping to have 5 hives this season, but four is pretty good, and swarm season isn’t over yet. Best to build up slowly anyway, I will have plenty to keep track of as it is!
We also had a new batch of kits born on Monday, haven’t gotten a good count yet but they seem feisty! Osprey continues to make great progress….still hasn’t been ridden but now walks easily over a ‘bridge’, and has been trailered to a local arena. I go see her again tomorrow. Next week Rachel takes her other mustang to a competition, and he will be auctioned off at the end. If you live in California and are looking for a really nice horse with a great foundation and a sweet temperament, you should check out Rachel and Titan at the Norco Extreme Mustang Makeover Trail competition. I will be so sorry to see him go, and really hope he finds a good home with someone who will appreciate him. He is built like an old school cavalry horse, and I think would look really good going english. And he jumps 3 feet! Scroll down this page and you will see a black and white image of a civil war era horse that looks a lot like Titan….(minus the crooked forelegs, Titan is actually very nicely put together).