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The afternoon had a 60% chance of rain and after lunch it was mostly overcast.  It seemed a good idea to at least attempt to finish getting the garden cleaned up and planted for the season.  Between yesterday’s burn and today’s 4 + hours in the garden, I should have my quota of Vitamin D, however, due to a prior bout of skin cancer, I stay totally covered with a wide brimmed hat, long sleeves and long pants.  Much crawling around on my aging knees and rooting around in the dirt with bare fingers, the weeds are cleared.

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Cleared beds and a ground eye view of the raspberry bed as I inched along that path pulling weeds.  After my efforts, 4 rows of black wax bush beans, 1 row of lemon cucumbers, 1 row of spacemaker cucumbers, a small patch of carrots, and several hills of yellow squash have been planted.  I still need to transplant the pepper and tomato starts and get a thick layer of spoiled hay in the paths to try to keep the weeds down and to get a bit more around the raspberries and grapes.  I still have a space between the garden and the chicken run that is full of tiny stones and some weeds that needs attention, but I gave out and it was dinner prep time.  Wouldn’t you know that the rain chance has diminished to 40% without a shower and the sky has alternately cleared and clouded while I worked.

The chickens love my efforts as I take armloads of weeds and bugs to them to peck through.  Everytime I go to the fence they come running to see what the load contains.  They particularly like when it is full of chickweed or if I dig up a grub or two.  I was rewarded with 7 eggs collected in my hat as I quit for the day.

My hope is to try to stay ahead of the garden this year and not be faced with a later season weeding as I usually have to do.  As soon as the garlic is harvested, a second planting of bush beans and a fall planting of kale and cabbage will be planted in those two beds.  I still haven’t figured out where to plant the pie pumpkins and winter squash, but I am leaning toward putting them near the berries and let them run where they can’t do any harm.

Life is an adventure on our mountain farm.