Recent Happenings

Posted by & filed under gardening, livestock.

I’m not sure I can adequately articulate the strain I’ve put myself under for the past 6 months. It’s been brutal. My desire to pile us much up as I can fit on my plate has in some ways caused me to bite of more than I can chew. Between farming upstate, trying to write a book, struggling to maintain good relations with neighbors and make enough money to pay NYC rent I’ve been burning the candle at both ends. I’ve been sick because of it. Headaches and stomach aches and self medicating with excessive good drink and good food have been common themes in my life since Summer. Es no bueno.

But, gladly that is coming to an end it seems. While I’m approaching my busiest time of year I’ve improved my time management skills a bit. I’ve been leaning heavily on Google Calendar and to-do lists and that’s helped me prioritize and move things through the queue a bit more swiftly. The next step for me is turning off the AirPort on my computer so that I can focus on completing the last couple chapters of The Rooftop Beekeeper instead of noodling about on Facebook (which I’ve become convinced is some tool of oppression, but I digress…I’m mostly kidding). My manuscript will be done soon and that will be one large weight off of my shoulders.

In other news, over the next 6 months Neil and I will be wrapping up life here on Jewel Street. We’ll be taking up residence on a little speck of land overlooking the Navesink River in NJ. We’ll be just an hour outside of NYC, which means we both can hold on to our sources of income until we get our little farm off of the ground. We’ll be able to keep more chickens, more bees, our rabbits and maybe even add some goats and pigs to the mix! Hell yeah!

Before we transplant ourselves, I’ll be operating a small Urban Farming Pop-up store called Hayseed’s Big City Farm Supply with the folks from Brooklyn Grange and Domestic Construction. We’ll be selling beekeeping gear, chicken and rabbit feed, seeds, soil, books…we’ll have workshops and a reading nook filled with old farm and garden books. We want to be a springboard for dreamers. Come all ye pie-in-the-sky-ers!


For now, I’m simplifying things…I’ll be planting most of my garden in containers so that come August I can just move it to NJ. In the raised beds I’ll plant early season crops. I’m moving the rabbits to Jenna’s place upstate. She was so kind to offer her barn for them to reside until I set down roots. I’m heading up tomorrow and I was invited to attend a work horse lesson which is tremendously exciting to me.I like to fantasize about having a team of oxen one day, though horses seem to make more reliable workers. I’m quite looking forward to the opportunity to bond with some larger four-legged beasts.

I’m a little worried about Hazel. She’s gotten a pretty funky ear infection. The same sort that Salad came down with right after the kits were weaned. I imagine it has something to do with a weakened immune system. Sal’s ears are nearly cleared up after a few feeks of applying propolis tincture and ointment. I will have to do the same for the other now. Hoping that in the next 24 hours Hazel’s ear improves (I’ve cleaned and dressed it this a.m.) or I won’t feel comfortable taking her up there. It’s one thing to take a healthy rabbit up to a friends house for looking after. It would be quite rude to take an ailing bunny.

So, that’s how my immediate future is shaping up. I start checking bees for dead outs this week. I’ve seen my bees flying on mild days so I expect I’ll find them hanging tough in their little pine boxes. It’s hard to say what my clients bees will look like, but we’ll know soon enough. I can’t wait for be season, I’m telling you!




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