Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Soil Blocking: Oh yeah!

Well today we made soil blocks! For those of you who are not familiar with any of this. I will walk you through a short explanation:

First you need a soil blocker!

Then you need a to make a batch of soil blocking mix (it is like making cake batter) which is also featured in the picture above. Then you need to press the soil blocker into the mix.

Then press the soil blocks out of the blocker onto a tray.

After that all you just place some onion seeds and you have officially started your transplants!

So that was our delightful day! We also had a little B-day celebration for Kath, because it is her birthday tomorrow and her and Mike will be at an ACORN (Atlantic Canada Organic Regional Network) Exhibition in Halifax, from Wednesday to Saturday or Sunday.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Things always happen for a reason

Today was a great start to the week for the gang at Bantry Bay Farm. We are working on being better people at the same time as learning how to farm so sometimes things take a little while to get going. We sifted some sand for the soil block mix, Mike made some plans for our future solar dryer and Brad made some DELICIOUS bread, right now he's working on Blondies(a cake-ish thing)!

The day was long to start so we worked into the evening until we got a call from a new friend of ours Madeline. She is our neighbour across the highway and is very beautiful. She and I were going to search for some grants together but unfortunately she had a meeting to go to.

The meeting was the Conservation Council of New Brunswick and "was it open to anyone" I asked. Well that was it Mike, Luke and I were off to meet new townsfolk and find out what it was this group did. We sat and listened to the new idea of chapters in all the counties of NB and heard of all the issues the members were concerned about and was it ever sweet music to our ears! Compost, recycling, waste reduction, anti-lawn pesticide bylaws, etc. the words were just like beautiful pieces of art flowing through a dream where everyone is passing you chocolate treats and freshly squeezed juice!

It was another exciting day on Bantry Bay Farm and folks let me tell you, they happen everyday!!!

Friday, February 24, 2006

This One Goes Out To The One We Love

Johnny Leroux! The New Brunswick Turnip Growers Association sends their love.
We wrote this riddle for you O' Captain our Captain:

Riddle me this,
and riddle me that
I'm delicious,
but low in fat.

the sun may shine
and the rain may flow
but i won't grow
when the boron's low

I'm kinda cute,
but not a fruit.
Now mind your boot
or you'll squash this root!

If you're looking for me
I'll be in the dirt.
But if i'm not there
I'm on a pink shirt.

We're Rooting for you Johnny!

Farmer's log, Farm date: 02.24.06

Today we decided we were going to build a little greenhouse for our transplants. So the first thing we needed was lumber for the frame. Well, there just so happens to be a barn with a whole bunch of lumber in the form of walls and feeding troughs and stuff like that. Well actually I should say there use to be, before we came with a sledge hammer and got medieval on it. So now we have what seems to be enough lumber for a greenhouse frame, but we still need the plastic for the walls. So if anyone has any idea where we can find some recycled or used poly, we'd like to hear suggestions.

Farmer's log, supplemental: Mike started reading a book to us last night called "The Giver". So far it is excellent.

Here is a before and after of our work today

Getting ready

We set to work building trays for our transplants today. We're makin them out of an old countertop that we came across in one of the barns. Its not the perfect material, but i think it will work well for our purposes. Heres a shot of Luke cutting the first piece while a mysterious lumberjack looks on.

We soon discovered that while dull hand saws are great for slow cutting and sore elbows, recipricating saws just work sooo much better. Heres a nice pic of the lumberjack adjusting his glasses before going in for the kill.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The guestbook is fully functional!

The guestbook on bantrybayfarm.ca is now up and running I encourage everyone to leave comments :) we would love to hear from you.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Cold Frame

YEE-HAAW. Our first experimental hay-bale cold frame. Very low-tech, very inexpensive and very effective(we hope). We're gonna put some thermometers inside and outside and test the difference in temp.

The concept is simple. Let the light in, keep the heat in, and protect against the wind. When we build our real cold frames we'll also slope the ground about 5 degrees to maximize the sunlight. Also, Luke says hi.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Yay! Website

Well I figured I would announce that the official bantry bay farm website is up and running and I invite anyone to go check it out, it is a work in progress and I am learning as I am going so don't be too harsh with your comments :P. It will change and evolve hand-in-hand as my skill, and the farms' ideas do. Soon there will be a guestbook/comment page on the website, once I figure out CGI-scripts. Until then use this blog to comment.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Another Day =Þ

Today we went to a town meeting and a lot of things were discussed and we all had different opinions about what transpired, but we all know something happened today and things do happen for a reason. I will leave more discussion about this and the town meeting for a group post.

Now that, the meeting has been touched on i would like to show you guys a east coast sunset, we see a similar one everyday, and it is so beautiful a picture can barely do it justice.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Hard at Work

[Everyone] Last Night We Had a Blizzard. The snow wasn't falling too fast, but it snowed for a long period of time. Once it was dark out we decided to go for a BIG expedition to the windy fields and sheltered forest to play a game of tag! Sure glad we got those scarves (Brad's Knitting). It was a great feeling to be coming inside after some exercise in the snow.

Prior to the game of tag we played a fat game of Bantry Rico (a mike's homemade special of Puerto Rico). Mike won... But we all had fun! (So Everyone WON!!!)

This morning we woke up to a beautiful sunny day with snow on the ground and sparkling ocean just a few feet away. We got down to business, after a nice breaky. We planned out the rest of the week and searched the barns for tools, measured the fields, and worked on the website. Brad made vegan cookies that were delightful.

All in all it was an excellent first day at work. Hope everyone is doing great.

Love Brad, Mike, Luke, and Kath!

Saturday, February 11, 2006

On The Farm!!!

Well Today is a Red Letter Day!!!

We are on the farm now, it is 11:09 right now and everyone is in bed and i decided to use the extremely fast dial-up service (just kidding) to update everyone. Well it has been ten days of us in NB and so far I am impressed it is everything i have been craving. The first thing i did on the farm was setup the internet service :P the next thing was call my mom, but sadly she was not in.

We had a delightful meal to celebrate the first night here and then we had a business talk. Pretty soon after that everyone hit the hay, and i began to surf the WWW for the first time in 10 or so days, Dial-up is rediculously slow! so i got bored fast, but luckily Ben (Luke's Bro) was here to save the day and we played around with the webcam he got luke for chirstmas. Sadly it didn't function up to the level it did on highspeed, which wasn't too shocking.

Tomorrow we will all organize a group post again. And I will be Sure to Put some paragraphs in there so that it isn't too intimidating to read.

Hope everyone is doing well. We will be online speradically because we will want to be outside rather than inside considering we have a farm to explore. Other than that, goodluck and love to all!!!

Monday, February 06, 2006

Hi everyone! We rock! We are actually making some headway on all the things we need to get done and we are keeping Sofie(my niece) busy while we're at it! For all of you who wonder about what other people are doing check out the Council of Canadians website www.canadians.org they are working on a whole wack of things. Also, PEI was recently deciding whether or not to become a GE Free zone. In the end they decided not to but if you go on to their website(which you can find thru the above web address, you can read the hearings and see some good whole hearted community discussion about the issue and if you read right to the very end you'll see a familiar name in the contributions!!!(Hint: Look under M)
Until next time, keep fit and have fun!

Busy Days! Dial-up is no fun!

Hey Everyone,

We have been having a busy few days, we have somewhat been neglecting our blog because we don't have the greatest internet access and won't for awhile, but I decided that I would do a quick update so that others can be informed as to our progress. We are still in Fredericton, which is about an hour and a half from St. Andrews, till this Saturday. We went for a visit to the farm on Sat. and it was absolutely beautiful the sun was shining, the ground was surprisingly not frozen, which was great because we had to dig 6" into the ground to get a soil sample. So far we have been having near Vancouver weather a.k.a. lots of rain, but that is supposed to change into snow pretty quick. Even though there isn't much to write home about there is a lot of stuff we are doing to get ready for the farm. Everyone we have met so far seems very excited to see us taking on this adventure and it looks like we will have lots of support and volunteers if we need them. :P Well Katherine and I are at the library now and we should get going because we have more stuff to do today. I hope everyone is doing great and things are going as well for you as they are for us.