IMG_2933It’s been a little more than a month since I last wrote a blog entry. It started with what I thought was a kink in my neck, which led to me getting a cold that lasted more than a few weeks, but the pain in my neck traveled to between my shoulder blades, leading to numbness throughout my left arm and hand. It now also affects my right arm and hand. I’ve been to the chiropractor who said that I have a pinched nerve due to herniated discs in my neck from a car accident many years ago. The matter was complicated by the fact that we were sleeping on a mattress that was very old and given to us when we first moved to New Mexico. I was grateful for that bed everyday! It reached its expiration though a few years ago.

Both Dom and I have had back problems in the past due to the bed, and when it started happening again to us, we knew that my problem with my pinched nerves were a result of sleeping in the hole in the middle of my bed. He has a similar hole in his side. No matter how we turn the mattress, we still ended up laying in body impressions.

Two weeks ago, while Dom was weeding he threw his back out. This all came right before we were supposed to put our house on the market with a realtor. It has now been postponed until after September 21.

I am able to type for longer than a few seconds now, but the way I have to sit in order to type is uncomfortable. I’m still unable to do real work outside caring for the animals and garden, and I can barely do any housework.

Two days ago Dom’s parents purchased a new mattress and box spring for us, and it has started to make a difference in my day. I noticed yesterday that I had less incidences of my arms and hands going numb, and today I can type longer with less numbness and pain. I have an appointment today to see an acupuncturist and massage therapist thanks to my daughter Hannah.

It has been a very difficult month for Dom and I. We’ve reached out for help to get the property ready to sell, and Sept 20-21 are major weed and property clean up days. I won’t be able to help with the work, but hopefully my arms and hands will be able to take photos again. I feel like I’ve lost so much valuable time with my animals as they grow because I can barely hold my phone up to take a stupid photo. That’s how bad the pinched nerves are! GRRRR!

I believe that this painful month long event has been a blessing in disguise. If I wasn’t in pain, I would have been outside working and tending to my daily routine. I wouldn’t have been thinking about that next phase of our lives…where we want to move to.

So, I’ve had more than a month to ask Dom and myself the tough questions. Where do we want to live? What do we want to do? Who do we want to share our lives with? What do we want to pursue passionately?

We decided that this will be our last year in New Mexico. After our commitments are fulfilled with our shareholders in 2015, we will be moving Luna Hill Heritage Farm to Nova Scotia, a maritime province in eastern Canada. I have been learning all about our new future homestead destination, and I’ve enjoyed learning about its history and culture. After Dom and I chose Nova Scotia (we wanted to be in a place that offered both the forest and the ocean), I found out that I have Acadian ancestors that settled in Nova Scotia before it became a part of Canada. The Acadians were French settlers who came to the new land to start their lives. They were driven from their lands in 1755, and my ancestors were sent to Louisiana. It has made our decision to move to Nova Scotia that much sweeter.

When we move, this blog will no longer exist unfortunately. When I set up our new blog, I’ll let everyone know so you can subscribe.

Here’s a few photos I managed to take:


The turkeys fight over the paddles of the ceiling fan outside.


Tomatoes continue to be prolific. IMG_2897 IMG_2899 IMG_2905

Purple cabbage from the garden was harvested.


The turkeys are growing up. I adore them. They have the sweetest dispositions.

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It’s the story of our lives, flux, upheaval, moving, shifting, changing direction, making new plans. Been there, done that! I’ve been strangely silent over the last two weeks because Dom and I have been super busy maintaining our flocks, the garden, and the new direction we want for our lives. Part of that direction involves selling our house in order to purchase a larger tract of land and scale up our CSA, adding pastured pork and a sheep dairy to the mix.

As we’ve had some very serious discussions, we’ve had to make some sacrifices by not taking on any new CSA members. We will just be fulfilling commitments to our current Shareholders through 2015. We won’t be offering a winter share, and the only shares we will have available will be egg shares (both duck and chicken) and a few turkey shares.

We decided that if our house sells quickly, then we can get on with looking for a new place to live and take new Harvest Box (fruit and veggie) Shareholders for the 2015. However, if our house doesn’t sell, we will only be offering egg shares. We need to stay semi flexible, and since our Harvest Box Shareholders for 2014 only signed up for the summer season, their shares for the year will come to an end and we won’t be renewing until we are settled in a new place.

Dom and I have been doing a little soul searching asking this question of each other (to which there is no easy answer), “If you could live anywhere you wanted, where would you live?” That question has haunted us for two weeks now. We toss fond distant memories of childhood around, sharing stories of places that made an impact on us. We’ve thought about our families and thoughts of being closer to them. We’ve even thought about distant lands we’ve never been to, yet have the desire to see someday. All these thoughts, that in the past were never considered. Why? Because we were either making compromises, or we felt we weren’t in the position to make a choice as beautiful as choosing your own paradise.

There is only one thing we are absolutely sure of, and that is no matter what we decide, our Shareholders orders will be fulfilled for the full season they paid for.

So, if you don’t hear from me in more than a week, we’re still here, alive and kicking…we’re just getting ready to make the house ready to sell with a realtor. Up until now, we’ve had the house as a For Sale By Owner, but we just don’t know how long it would take if we continue to try and sell ourselves.

We’ve had a lot of interest in the house, and we actually have a few different people coming to see the house today.

A little peek around…

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The play set was installed! Now it needs to be stained, the ground sculpted and wood chips added.

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Potluck at Luna Hill- Tomorrow Night

Hello all! Tomorrow is our monthly potluck and I’d like to let everyone know the total so far…

We have a total of 15 confirmed people coming to this month’s potluck, and 1 maybe. The theme of tomorrow’s event is Super Salads of Summer, and with that in mind, please bring your favorite dish with enough for 10-15 people.

I’d like to see everyone use a little creativity when crafting their dish, so please refrain from bringing potato salad, tuna salad, macaroni salad, crab salad and other salads that are the usual staple at get-togethers (you can bring those sides to other potlucks we’ll be having). We have such an amazing abundance of fresh local food from farmers markets and at the stores and co-ops, that I really want to focus on fresh salads that you just can’t get enough of!

I look forward to seeing you all there! I’ll be posting this message on our Facebook page as well as to those who signed up via our website.

See you all tomorrow!

The Turkeys are quirky and oh so cute! 

I’m in love with these little guys! They are so stinking cute, quirky, and down right adorable. They’re growing very fast, and quickly outgrowing the little brooder they are in. They are feathering out faster than any bird I’ve ever had, and currently trying to fly out. Tomorrow they will be relocated to the large brooder. We needed to do a bit of rearranging with the animals temporary homes, and we finally have things worked out.

Ducks and Chickens are Now Out on Pasture

The ducks and chickens were moved out to the pasture and they are loving all the new space, bugs, weeds, seeds, grit, and places to hide in the tall tumbleweeds. We had our Chicken Fountain water system disconnected while they were in the courtyard, and I thought I would need to train them how to use the fountain, but the ducks remembered right away, went crazy for all the fresh water and taught the chickens how to drink from it. I’m glad that nightmare is over!

Anyone who has chickens or ducks can tell the horror stories of what its like to clean out the waterer each day. Smelly, gross, and during the summer mold and algae can build up quickly. It gets slimy and it’s just not the most healthy watering option for poultry. When ducks and chickens share the same water, chickens get nothing but dirty water constantly. I feel bad for them.

Enter the Chicken Fountain, which provides fresh clean water to poultry day and night. It doesn’t get slimy, dirty or grimy, and best of all, the chickens stay healthy. Ducks are messy no matter how you give them water. They need water when they are eating food, and then dirty any water in a dish, bowl or pool. I know the chickens get grossed out by the nasty water, and now they never have to worry about dirty mucky water again.

CSA Shares for 2015

We’ve been working on offering more flexible payment options for those interested in becoming a CSA member but just don’t have the money upfront. Currently the CSA model is set up where you pay upfront at the beginning of the year, but we are considering a small enrollment fee and monthly payments. Because this was our first year as a CSA, we still don’t have all our infrastructure in place, and since Shareholders that did sign up and pay, only did so for the summer season, we will not be offering anything again until 2015. We grew only for our Shareholders this year, and while we did plant in abundance for far more than just the Shareholders we have, its sold before we have a chance to bring it to the farmers market via direct sales.

July in the Garden

As the fruits and vegetables continue to form and grow, we are currently sort-of contending with squash bugs and cucumber beetles. We won the last battle with blister beetles when they tried to ravish our tomato plants, and we did lose 1/3 (maybe less) of our tomato plants to curly leaf top virus, but the rest of our tomatoes are starting to make a recovery and put out lots of tomatoes.

Cucumbers are growing up the trellis, eggplants have made their recovery from whatever was assaulting them, and we’ll be harvesting a second crop of broccoli this week. Squash has started to form, and while the squash bugs have been laying eggs and mating like it’s the end of the world (it is for them since neem oil is supposed to alter their hormonal system) I’m hopeful that the blend of neem and Dr. Bronner’s soap and water will do the trick of keeping them from devouring our squash.

Everyday I see them out there, and I find the eggs, and a few times some nymphs, but they haven’t been successful *fingers crossed* at destroying my plants. Time will tell. The neem oil works beautifully for keeping cucumber beetles, blister beetles, aphids, and other pests away, and it’s a wait and see game when it comes to the squash bugs. I pick them off, squish the eggs, and feed the adults to the ducks and chickens, but they haven’t killed a plant yet.

I hope everyone has an amazing weekend, 

Angela aka Farmer Jane
Owner, Luna Hill Heritage Farm



Say hello to the newest additions at Luna Hill. 17 turkey poults arrived yesterday morning. Two died in transport, 15 seem to be doing well.

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We also got a new piglet which I named Twinkie, but Simone decided her name was going to be Pinkie Pie. So Pinkie Pie it is!

Pinkie Pie is about 5 pounds and about 15 inches long. She’s such a cutie! It took close to 8 hours total driving time to go and pick her up and bring her home. It’ll be even further when we go to pick up the dairy ram from California! Oye!

Isn’t she the cutest thing ever?!

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Everyone is doing well, growing strong and enjoying life. I love coming out to the courtyard in the morning to feed the birds and pigs, and watching the them change and mature.

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July 13, 2014

A Lot is Happening at Luna Hill 

First, let me start with an apology for not having a newsletter for you all last week. With only Dom and I working around here, our time is very tight, and we’re often exhausted at the end of the day. Last week we had another Shareholder delivery, and now that things are starting to come more abundantly, we’ll move to every week deliveries rather than every other week. Harvesting takes place on Friday and Saturday mornings, and it often takes us many hours getting things ready to deliver.

A Bounty Bulletin will be going out this week to all Shareholders. If you are a Non-Harvest Box Shareholder of eggs and turkeys, we’ve made it possible for you to purchase a Harvest Box at the CSA price each week if we have enough. We would prefer to work this way than to take a full day at the farmers markets right now. We will also be opening our gates soon for direct sales of our products in mid August.

When we start our business hours, I’ll post them on Facebook, as well as in the right side bar of the newsletter.

Farm Fresh Buyers Club and Delivery Service Survey

Please take some time and fill out our new survey. If there are enough people interested in having farm fresh truly local food delivered directly to their door, we will be offering it as a service from Luna Hill. We’re currently talking with local farmers who sell pastured eggs, pork, beef, chicken and fruits and vegetables, to see what we can work out in terms of direct farm to consumer services to reach a greater number of people who may not have access to the farmers market because of time constraints, transportation, or work hours.

Click here to fill out our survey

Our Next Potluck at Luna Hill: Super Salads of Summer

Please join us Saturday, July 26 from 5-8:00 PM for our second potluck of the season. 
The theme of this potluck is Super Salads of Summer. We would like everyone to bring their favorite summer salad. While it might be easy to just run to the store and pick up macaroni salad, tuna salad, potato salad, I’d like to put the challenge out to you to bring something other than these fine staples of summer. 
Please sign up and we’ll contact you before the event to let you know how many people will be in attendance so you can know how much of your salad to bring. 
I’d like this to be fun, creative, and of course delicious! It’s time to put your chef’s hat on and wow us with something you really love. 
If you’re a CSA Shareholder at Luna Hill, or are interested in finding out more about us, come on down for a mini tour, meet new people and enjoy some good food. 
Those who sign up will be entered into a raffle to win some freshly harvested produce from our garden. 
Live Entertainment
Daniel Snow, local musician-singer/song writer will be joining us for some live entertainment. We love Daniel’s music, and look forward to hearing him perform. 

Hope everyone can make it out!

Check out Daniel’s FB page to hear a sampling of his latest work

Click here to listen to his music

Okay, onto other announcements and happenings…

Yesterday I traveled to Melrose, NM to pick up the next addition to our farm family. Her name is Twinkie, although Simone is dead set on calling her Pinkie Pie. Twinkie is about 5 pounds and around 15 inches from snout to rump. Is she adorable or what?!

Yes, the circumference of the banana is the same as her little nose.

She loves lettuce, beet greens, pig weed, grapes, popcorn and bananas. She’s not all that interested in eating carrots yet.
I had hoped to post a video of her meeting Waffles, but unfortunately their first meeting didn’t go well at all. He bit her head to show his dominance, which freaked me out. She’s less than a quarter of his size, so she didn’t leave my arms the whole time. I think he was a bit jealous as well. So, we’ll introduce him to her over the next few weeks through the brooder. I’ll be moving his crate to the sun porch where they can smell each other and get used to one another in an area that is not his territory. I purchased her so he wouldn’t be alone, but I can’t allow them to be together until I know she will not be harmed by him. He’s very strong. He didn’t hurt her when he nipped at her head, and she didn’t flinch. It was as if she knew he was Big Papa.
I’m hopeful they will get along in the coming weeks.

This Week at Luna Hill

Broccoli is being harvested this week

Winter squash are just starting to form male blossoms. They haven’t opened yet.

Jalapeños have formed and are growing

Curly top virus has infected about a 1/3 of all our tomato plants. Unfortunately they will need to be pulled out. We’ve already lost 12 plants to the virus, and this week I’ll be pulling out the rest. We still have many healthy tomato plants left.

Onion green tops are ready to harvest again

The first eggplants were harvested today. There are more that will be harvested this coming weekend

Eggplants are doing well despite the fact that something has been enjoying the leaves and stem.

Zucchini and summer squash are starting to blossom and form fruit.

I love how crazy the pollinators are for the squash blossoms

The first developing crook neck squash ready to plump up

Green beans will be harvested this week

This week I was able to photograph a real live Tarantula  Hawk Wasp! It was so beautiful.

Moving Forward with Our Sheep Dairy and Creamery Plans

After finding a breeder to work with in developing a new dairy sheep for our southwest region, we’ve decided to start the process of scaling up and put our plans into action. Our five year farm plan is to have a sheep dairy and creamery, and since we found someone who already has already crossed the sheep taking 50% of workload off of us, we are moving forward. The first ram lamb will be available to us this fall. Part of our five year plan was to lease our neighbor’s 20 acres and dairy barn. He has not returned our calls, or given us any solid answer about when we could lease, so we’ve decided we will search for land and build from scratch.

We will be putting our house on the market (we took it off the market with hopes that we’d be able to lease his land), and the sale of our home will allow us to purchase land and start scaling up our CSA operation as well as to start the breeding program and develop different cheeses. We need to do this if we hope to be anywhere near our goal for the five year farm plan.

We decided to sell our house ourselves, but if a great LOCAL realtor can come along and completely impress me, I might be willing to have a realtor instead. We haven’t had the best of luck with realtors, as sellers or as buyers, so I’m jaded at this point.

So what does this mean for our CSA Shareholders? Nothing and everything! All harvests will go as planned. If our home sells, all our animals come with us. I don’t foresee the house selling next week, and closings usually take about three months, which by that time we will be wrapping up the end of our growing season. Harvest Box Shareholders have already been informed of the changes, and Egg and Turkey Shareholders will have regular drop offs or deliveries when we start harvesting eggs. Turkeys will still be raised, slaughtered and dressed for Thanksgiving and/or Christmas.

We are looking to stay in the Los Lunas area, but we are open to other areas around the ABQ metro area. We’re looking for 20 or more acres with no land restrictions on building our own off grid green home and business.

I have been in contact with the owner of a piece of property we are extremely interested in. It is the perfect set up at a most attractive price. I’m so excited about this property that I can hardly contain myself, and unfortunately I can’t talk about it yet! EEEEEE!

Click here to view our ad on craigslist, and if you’re interested in setting up an appointment to see our home, shoot us an email!

I hope everyone has an amazing week,

Angela aka Farmer Jane
Owner, Luna Hill Heritage Farm

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It has been a very busy week! So busy in fact that I was too exhausted to send out our weekly newsletter on Saturday. Life is good here at Luna Hill, with animals growing strong, and the gardening exploding with new fruits.

Monsoon season is in full swing, and almost everyday we’ve gotten hammered by driving winds and strong rain. I’m not complaining, that’s for sure!

I’m trying to catch my breath and take a little rest before we start fall planting. I’ve been working on the planting schedule,IMG_1726 and finding new areas to create planting beds. Right now, I feel that our cabbages take up prime real estate in the Quadrant garden, and if they were tucked away in another area of the property, the garden beds could be used for quicker growing vegetables with multiple harvests possible.

Cabbage just, you know, sits there. You can’t do much with it while it’s forming its head, except to grow other faster growing things around it, but when they reach maximum density, nothing can really grow properly in its shade. Yes, I could grow lettuce in the shade of the large cabbage leaves (they may not make the best companions), but the leaves get in the way of fast efficient harvesting. So I’ve found other areas for growing broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts, and in the next few months they’ll be planted in their new beds. In between each row of brassicas, will be onions and/or leeks, celery and celeriac.

Dom is almost finished with the spiral lettuce bed. This bed is naturally shaded by pine trees and will be the home to all our micro-greens, spring mix, and other lettuces that don’t grow well in our summer sun and heat.

And finally when the spiral bed is complete, the rest of the market garden will be finished.

Here are some photos from this past week:


Dom was calculating in his head where the new cucumber trellis would be fastened.


Arugula is coming up


Simmi stole Waffles baby pool


Cucumber trellis is complete


Waffles, after a period of time listening to Simmi try to explain her chalk game, gave up and walked way. I think he was a little confused as to whether Simmi actually wanted him to skip over certain circles. He was frustrated nonetheless!


Eggplant showed up after a major rain storm


Cabbages are looking glorious

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Saturday we had our next harvest and delivery to Shareholders


Dom confessed to me in the garden that he loves harvesting


Broccoli heads are forming


Kale was ready to be harvested

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The green tops from the onions were clipped. Clipping the tops provides green onions, and leaves the onion bulb to grow larger


Hoops were added to the cabbage beds to provide more space for them to grow since they reached the top of the metal hoops.


Tomatoes were pruned and tied to the trellis. Marigolds, beans and purple basil are all coming up now.


The cucumbers should develop their tendrils in the next few days and start climbing up the trellis.


Beautiful fernbush is in bloom.


Squash bed was thinned


Eggplant is making a slow recovery from whatever was eating it. Something was snacking on the stem, and the ants would follow close behind hollowing out the main stalk. Amazingly, after three treatments of neem oil, the plant seems to be coming back strong. I decided not to plant anything in this bed because I couldn’t identify what was killing the eggplant. Since it’s making a comeback, I’ll go ahead and plant it with herbs and other companions, and do a deep mulching.


The zucchini and summer squash bed is growing and filling out.


Borage is about to bloom, beans are blossoming, cilantro is growing tall, marigolds are making themselves known, and the sweetest little jalapeños are fruiting.

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Giant pumpkin leaves suffered some tearing in the wind, but are doing well and growing strong.

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Close up of the cucumber and spinach plants.



As we roll into a very productive summer, I’m considering offering up a few work exchange positions. I haven’t nailed down all the details, but I can say that with my work load, and Dom’s crazy insane work hours, I need help in the garden.

A work exchange would include a certain amount of hours per week, and in return, the person working would take home a large box of fruits, vegetables, and eggs (if they eat eggs)…basically what we have growing here. If we had more Shareholders we would be able to offer paid positions, but at present, all we can offer is our beautiful food.

If you live in the Albuquerque or Valencia County area, and have access to transportation to get down to our farm, contact me at so we can talk about work exchange. Please put “Work Exchange” in the subject as well, and I’ll get back to you within 24 hours. If you don’t have transportation but can take a train into Los Lunas, we can pick you up at the train station.



Finally! The ducklings and Waffles have their own pools. After searching online, and also taking a ride to a few places locally, I had to go all the way to the west side of Albuquerque to get these pools. If ToysRus would have advertised online that they actually have these in stock at their store, I would have been over there two weeks ago.

Anyway, the pools are perfect for growing ducklings and not too big for Waffles to climb into. Of course he’s hesitant about going in his pool, but I think as the heat of the day hits, he’ll make an effort.

Everyone is doing great, growing strong, and quite active. They made it through their first thunder, lightening and torrential downpour yesterday. I have strange animals. Or actually maybe it’s me, since the last batch of ducks and chickens I had were exactly the same way. They were scrappy, rugged, and had a tough as nails desert attitude.

Waffles isn’t enjoying the new arrangement where he has no access to the mulberry tree or mud wallow we made for him. We needed to use that area to transition the chicks and ducklings. We’re designing the sweetest area for him to live out in the play ground, where he can see Simmi everyday (and other children that come to play), have a mud wallow, and his own sturdy housing. It will be big enough for one more little mini pig to keep him company.IMG_1539 IMG_1543 IMG_1549 IMG_1555 IMG_1570 IMG_1564 IMG_1559 IMG_1556 IMG_1582 IMG_1592 IMG_1595 IMG_1597 IMG_1600



On June 28 we had our very first Potluck at Luna Hill. We had a total of 9 people in attendance, and 6 that couldn’t make it at the last minute.

Over all it went well, we met some very lovely people, had great conversation, and Waffles got to show everyone how hungry his is all the time. There wasn’t a moment where he wasn’t begging for food or knocking over someone’s soda to slurp it up off the ground. Everyone got a kick out of him. :)

After eating great food, we gave a short mini tour of what we have growing, and what our master plans are in terms of expanding our farm.

As evening fell, one of our guests brought some kick ass fireworks, and we enjoyed the light show! These were not your grandpa’s sparklers (although we did have those too), no, these were fireworks that walk that grey line of “I’m not sure if those are legal” but boy will it be fun! We don’t live in the village limits so I guess certain rules don’t apply to us concerning fireworks.

Anyway, we had a great time and we look forward to the next potluck on July 26 from 5-8:00pm. We’ll let everyone know what the theme for July’s potluck will be soon! Dom has been in contact with a local musician who said he was interested in playing for July’s potluck…we’ll keep you posted!

Winners of our Potluck Raffle

We had a raffle entry for everyone that signed up and came to our potluck. It’s not enough to sign up, and to be in the drawing, you need to also be present.

Here are our winners:

1. One year Chicken Egg Share: Sergio

2. $25.00 Gift Certificate: Mike

3. $10.00 Gift Certificate: Vicki

I’ll let everyone know what July’s raffle will be for the next Potluck at Luna Hill.

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June 27, 2014


Potluck at Luna Hill

Tomorrow night is our first potluck! We’ll be grilling up hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken. This is a good ol fashioned barbecue for those who will be attending. The sign up is still open on ourEvents Page and also on Facebook Events. If you’d like to come, please click the link to join us. I’ll contact everyone tonight to let them know what to bring.

Dom and I will be providing the chicken, hamburgers, hot dogs, fresh salad, and a few side dishes made with ingredients from our garden.

Hope to see you there!

Ducklings and Chicks

The ducklings and chicks are all doing wonderful in their new outdoor temporary home. We did loose a few sick ducklings a few days ago after they drowned. I didn’t think they could even get into the little bin of water, but somehow they managed to drag their bodies in. They couldn’t get out of the water and since their legs weren’t working properly, they couldn’t stay above water. It’s sad, but at least they aren’t struggling anymore. I was at the point where I thought I would have to cull them since they weren’t recovering. I believe they had organ damage, since although they were eating and drinking, they weren’t gaining any weight and they were stunted in size. My last count of living ducklings was 21, with us losing a total of 9 ducklings since they arrived. They are one month now and doing well.

The chicks (now pullets) are doing well, and enjoying their time outside as well. They haven’t taken to roosting in the mulberry tree, but suspect that they may catch on soon.

The Sweltering Summer Heat

It has been very hot outside. Too hot to plant, and way too hot to be out in rubber boots. We’ve been watering, weeding and waiting for the high temps to break. The heat is also revealing which tomatoes I’ll plant next year, and which one’s not to. Some tomatoes do well in our dry hot climate, while others struggle to survive. I’ve observed Black Krim (pictured above still small and yellowing against the fence) to be an heirloom variety that may not be suitable in our region. The poor things are stunted, yellowing, and looking very sad. I haven’t pulled them out, but I’m not giving them any special attention either.

Our star in the tomato garden is the Brandywine. This baby is lush, green, and starting to put out some gorgeous fruit! It seems to enjoy 100 degree weather, and is stunning to look at. The scent it puts off is intoxicating also. If a gentle breeze blows by, you can smell the Brandywine fragrance.

Next up are Yellow Pear tomatoes. These guys also perform well in our area. This will be the third year we’re growing them, and they never seem to disappoint.

The last variety we have is the Roma tomato. The Roma is also performing well, and doing great in 100 degree temps. I would like to grow a few more new varieties next year of hard to find tomatoes. Any suggestions? It should be a tomato that can handle the heat and won’t require shading in the late day.

The shade cloth I put on the brassicas last week has really helped to take the heat stress off them. They stay perky and upright even at the hottest part of the day.

Onions and sunflowers are doing well. Purslane has been coming up, and I love that it makes a natural ground cover. By the end of the summer, the onion bed should be covered in purslane. Growing next to the fence is another weed I LOVE…pig weed. As long as it’s not growing in an area that will compromise crops or individual plants, I love it being in the garden.

Pig weed pictured on the right (amaranth) next to the white wild flowers is a wild edible weed and doubles as a great trap crop. Flea beetles LOVE this weed, and I’m more than happy to allow it to grow and get eaten, if we can come to some sort of arrangement that the bad bugs can have their fill of pig weed, while leaving my good plants alone.

The agreement has been kept so far, and I get to monitor what kind of bugs are in the garden depending on how much of the pig weed they eat. Weeds can play an amazing part in garden if we let them.

Comfrey and squash are getting along and growing beautifully.

Sunflowers are large and in charge.

Eggplant is struggling a bit. They love the heat, but something else has been loving it as well. Neem oil seems to help and the new little ones are coming in okay, but the older eggplant have something chewing at the stem. I’m hoping that after this next treatment of neem, we won’t have any more issues with the plant. It’s just starting to blossom too.

A volunteer on the other side of the fence! It’s the first time we’ve ever had a vegetable try to infiltrate our garden! Bugs and birds? Yes, small rodents, rabbits and snakes…yup. But fruits and vegetables trying to get in? I LOVE IT! So, this veggie looks like it could be another acorn squash, by the shape and color of the leaves. I had an acorn squash show up in one of our garden beds last year, but not in this area. I took a picture of it last year, because we didn’t plant it, nor did we ever grow acorn squash at that point, and we never watered it or tended to it. It was delicious by the way:

I love volunteers!

The squash patch continues to grow and do very well. They’re just about ready to take off and fill the area!

Arugula and flowers continue to grow. They struggled a little in the heat, but have recovered well.

Another cool volunteer growing near the onions. It looks like it could be an Armenian cucumber or some sort of squash.

Tomatoes everywhere

A view from our porch

Grapes are doing well, although this is their last year in this spot. They have struggled over the last several years, and we’ll be moving them to the courtyard next winter. For now, I’ve just been cutting back the canes which just seems to make it more determined to grow. They have also been treated with neem oil which has prevented flea beetle infestations. We do have flea beetles this year, but they have been sticking with the neem-free meal of pig weed. I’m happy to oblige. :)

Our massive continuous lettuce bed. The water lines are laid, and now we are just trying to decide whether we should go ahead a plant all the beautiful lettuce, or wait until the rabbits are caught. We have a number of bunnies on our property (I’m hoping the snakes will eat them) and while they haven’t eaten any of our plants, they might eat all the lettuce. They haven’t touched the arugula or spinach, which is a good sign, but we’re unsure what our next step will be. The bunnies are small enough to JUMP right through chicken wire. Yes, that small! There is no keeping them out at this point, so we have been trying to come up with some strategies to keep them off our lettuce patch.

Any ideas? Please let us know!

I hope everyone has an amazing weekend,

Angela aka Farmer Jane
Owner, Luna Hill Heritage Farm

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