Sunday, July 1, 2012

The Country Garden Showcase #27

We began babysitting a small herd of Nubian Dairy Goats on Thursday and surprisingly the experience has been helpful for my garden too.  I have been researching online to find out which weeds are beneficial to a dairy goat's diet and I was surprised that there are a few in my yard.  Needless to say, they're gone now.  We have been culling a few each day and throwing them into the goat corral.  The girls love them too.  You can follow the links below to be taken to a few of the sites we found that list both safe and toxic plants for dairy goats.  (The site names are links to the sites.) 

Fiasco Farms website is amazing.  It's full of useful information about dairy goats and cheesemaking too.
Dairy Goat Journal has an interesting article online about the subject of toxic plants.
Cornell University's School of Animal Science also has a lot of great information regarding toxic plants for dairy goats.
NetVet also has a great periodical available that appears to be a Cooperative Extension publication about this subject.

We have also been feeding the occasional few leaves of kale to the girls or a baby carrot as a treat.  They love our large canopy of poplar trees and are just settling into a routine.

Jerry made me a milk stand and that's been a BIG help.  The girls are trained to the stand and before we started using it, milking time was a little tough.  For the first two pre-stand milkings it took three grown women to convince the does to let us milk.  Since Jerry made me the stand, I am now milking all by myself. This morning I completed both goats without any helpers.  Hooray!

You can see some forty tomato plants in a long line in the picture above.  I have other small areas for tomatoes this year too.  Places that used to be part of my Hubby's parking lot, under fruit trees and around one of the beehives.

 Young zucchini and yellow squash plants are finally setting fruit. 

Last year's celery are flowering out and I hope to collect seeds to dry afterward.

My corn for the chickens are growing up nicely.

These are Armenian cucumbers.  If you look close you may be able to see a small one...

This is the leaf of one of my Big Max pumpkin plants.   The leaves are HUGE just like the pumpkins...

Pumpkin plants trail allover the place.  I love watching them grow and I enjoy seeing where they end up.

I am growing these pinto beans underneath my corn and beside my squash trying to mimic the three sisters relationship.  it seems to work well.  I love symbiotic relationships.

 I just added this second section of trellis for my scarlet red runner beans to continue to climb up onto.  It will soon be a seven foot tall living screen full of red flowers.

The fruit trees are doing well.  I am really surprised because of the heat.  These are a few crab apples.  They will eventually become jelly for my Mom-in-Law.  They're her favorite.

Can you see the ferocious guard dog on duty inside my house?  That's my Sugarplum.  She's a shih tzu though you likely cannot tell due to the buzz cut I gave her.  It's too hot up here right now for my dogs to have much hair on them.

I have three types of mint and they're just starting to set flowers which excites me because bees love them.

More mint...

My grandson has been harvesting potatoes for me for a few days now.  This is today's harvest.  He still has about 40 feet of row to go...

Well, that's what's been going on in my garden this week.  What have YOU been working on???

I am linking up the the Homestead Barn Hop!


  1. Garden looks great. You picked up milking really quick. Sugar plum looks cute as always.

  2. YAY for a milking stand, makes life much easier! ;-)
    Your garden is doing great! My pumpkin plants are doing the best of everything this year, can't wait to get pumpkins!


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