One Flourishing, Frugal and Fun Family!

One mother making ends meet and surviving today's recession by writing. One family learning to live off the land, cut back on expenses, and to live a simpler and a more self-sufficient lifestyle.

Adopted Motto

"Eat it up,
Wear it out,
Make it do,
Or go without."
~A Pioneer Sampler, by Barbara Greenwood~

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Ragweed, Wild Flowers and The Mower

I've been chatting with a park district expert, in regards to the wild flowers, weeds and invasive plants on our property.  At first I thought it was fun to press some of them, but it's been more that just that.

I've not only found out we have some very interesting flowers, but some weeds that are the cause of our bad allergies.  In fact, the dork that I am, went out and pulled Common Ragweed from the goat's pen area.  I had gloves on, but after pulling two armfuls, I had to stop.  My neck broke out in welts and it had the appearance of poison ivy or oak.  My neck was read and very itchy.  However, after wiping it with a cold, wet washcloth, it disappeared.  Phew!  I woke up congested and could not smell my clothesline fresh bed sheets.  

In this one picture I took, you can see three wild flowers, and they surround one giant weed.  The Tall Ironweed in the picture is taller than me, and I'm tall.  I am pressing some of the Wingstem, and Tall Ironweed.  I have yet to pick some of the Goldenrod.  I found out that the Goldenrod we have can be invasive.  We have a ton of it.

This wild flower grows low to the ground, and I just discovered it this year, as we mowed a good portion of the back acres.  There are still many plants I need to identify.  If we are going to have cattle and a horse out there, we need to know exactly what's growing and what needs to be removed.

My husband had to replace the mower blades recently, and repaired the mower several times.  Finally, we go it working again.  The other day we were in the house, and heard a loud "POP!"  

"Uh, Mom?  Your flower vase just exploded," said one of my daughters.

It didn't take long to discover that my husband ran over a rock, that was slivered by the new mower blades, and shot it right through the screen of the window.  It hit my plant pot and broke it.  Luckily, no one was sitting in the reading chair by the window.  That's scary.  We blame the dog.  One of our dogs picks up rocks in her mouth like a stick and drops them everywhere.  We are trying to break her from this, as her teeth may get damaged too.

Those very sharp mower blades, or maybe it was his bad mower driving (he he) that destroyed one of my garden stakes.  Grrr!  He got a little too close to the garden.

Speaking of garden, I went out there last night to pick tomatoes.  I discovered my Rote Von Paris, heirloom bush bean plants had disappeared.  I stood there, looking at the last 1 inch of plant stems.  After we went through, and could not find deer tracks, we decided we have our first rabbit problem.  Ugh.  Good thing I pulled the dry beans of last week.  At least I have a few dozen for planting next year.  Bad bunnies!

And I knew that I would get the e-bee jeebies scared out of me again.  Last year it happened when I was walking through the yard in flip-flops and a black water snake slithered under me.  Last night, it happened in the garden.  With all this year's rain, we've had a lot of frogs in the tomato and pepper area of the garden.  I was picking tomatoes and reached down low on one plant.  Out slithered a snake.  I almost threw my basket of tomatoes straight into the air!  Luckily, it was a Garter snake, so I let him live.  I just told him he better leave my frogs alone and scare those rabbits off.


Candy C. said...

Farming adventures and mishaps, gotta love 'em!!

Kim said...

Sorry, but I had to chuckle! believe we have all had that happen a few times.......but it still makes me squall!!