Well, we've had around another foot of snow here since I last posted. We had 6" one night, then 4" another night, and about 3" last night. I've shoveled out my various snow paths twice. It has also gotten colder and the trees appear to have frozen back up because the temperatures have not been getting high enough during the day to get the sap running. I spoke with a friend of mine who makes maple syrup to sell at the farmers market every year, and she told me that her husband had only just tapped their maple trees so I think I tapped mine a bit early. I also mentioned that I built a rocket stove to boil my sap down this year, but I forgot that many of you may not know what a rocket stove is so here is a link to how to build a basic rocket stove. I like this video because it is simple and clearly understandable. There is much more information available on You Tube about building variations of rocket stoves for different applications. I think I am going to build another one using smaller bricks to heat the greenhouse. permies.com is a great site to give you some ideas.
Lara and I went to the farmers market meeting for the Park Falls farmers market this past Wednesday. It was great to see our vendor friends from the Phillips market and meet new ones. This market has a lot more financial backing than our Phillips market. I expect it will out grow its current location in the small park across from the Marshfield Clinic before too long. There are several established farm business vendors, and that is really great for a market because you need those kinds of marketers to bring a regular supply of produce to a market. Then there are small producers like Lara and I who just want to sell their extras. Everyone gives food to the local food pantry, too, which is wonderful. I found out at the meeting that our market area is considered a food desert. The percentage of the population receiving food stamps is awful. Here are some statistics for Price, Ashland, and Iron Counties. (Scroll down to find the counties). (I believe this data is several years old but I couldn't find anything more recent so current figures are probably higher.) Anyway, the first market day will be Wednesday, June 5th, from 2:00 p.m. to around 5:00 p.m., or so. This year the market will experiment having a Saturday market on a few Saturdays to collect data on whether customers would be interested in going to a regular Saturday market. That, of course, bothers me because the Phillips market is on Saturday mornings, and I am committed to the Phillips market.
I went to the Builders Supply as I said I would and ta-da! --
one new Spring seed starting shelf unit strong enough to store winter squash on in the fall. The unit took 6-2"x4"x 6's, 12-2"x6"x6's, and a bunch of good wood screws to build. (I already had the lights.) Cost was just under $100. Best of all, the only pieces I had to cut were the cross supports for the shelves so the whole unit took me just a couple of hours to put together. It's also not too heavy for me to move by myself if I had to move it. Shelves are 20" deep.
I'm still studying for my General level ham license and learn Morse code, and still am trying to decide what kind of radio I want to buy. What fun!
Talk to you soon. Take care!