Sunday, April 21, 2013
Sunday Reading - A Non-Stop Weekend
Saturday I finished banging together all the large parts for a new bee nuc (which I bet I won't need this year) and four new swarm traps. I improved the swarm trap design this year by bolting the hanger attachment on instead of screwing it directly to the box. I also started using a small bolt for the top tie anchor as well. The advantage to this design is that these parts that stick out can now be removed and stored inside the trap box itself when I stop using them later this Summer. Ultimately this will cut down the storage area needed for keeping them by almost half. After the swarm season is over I think I will convert my other traps into this design as well.
Today I cut one of my easy access dead trees down. It was at the property we own in town and I noticed several semi-large branches (about wrist thickness) had fallen off during the last storm. The street it sits on draws a lot of Summer parking and I can't have a dead tree dropping it's branches on some guys Mercedes or some soccer mom's SUV. So down it had to go. We had to block traffic a bit while I dropped it and I had to get permission from the city to do it but the job is done. Since I am actually still burning the wood furnace a few nights here and there I can't claim I am truly working on next year's supply yet either but my guess is most of this haul will be burned next Winter.
Oh ya I forgot to mention my truck is still at the mechanics place so I finally had to break down and borrow my Dad's truck for a few days. His little mini-truck holds about a third what my F-150 holds. He claims half but I know it is really a third. The worst part is his truck is newer, smaller and still gets about the same mileage per gallon as my old beater farm truck. Beggars can't be choosy though at least his will shift into gear. Heh.
So two trips to haul this tree off, unload it each time, then another trip into town to pick up a half ton of top soil and unload that into the new raised beds.
Sweet another raised bed of strawberries is now planted and will soon start growing away.
I could have done all this in one trip with my truck. I still have to pick up some cinder blocks tomorrow and haul off all the branches along with mowing the grass in there. I finally hooked my trailer up this evening so I only need to make one trip tomorrow but Dad's little truck won't pull a heavily loaded trailer since like the little looser it is the hitch is not connected directly to the frame like my farm truck is. It can't take the weight.
Finally getting back to the Small-Hold for good I planted the strawberries and started painting the new nuc and swarm traps. I got two completely painted before dinner and after sitting still long enough to eat (more lamb shank stew mmmmmmm) exhaustion set in. It was all my mind could do to convince my body to get back up and put the shovel away and roll up the windows on the truck. My muscles did not want to move.
I think a long shower is in order followed by a controlled crash into my bed.
Keep Prepping Everyone!!!!