Homestead Buzz – Poor Performing Queen & Combining Hives

You’ve heard the saying, “It’s good to be the queen”. Well, it’s not always good to be the queen, especially if you’re a weak queen. The trap-out out hive, which I wrote about here, was having issues. They were not thriving and they had hive beetles.  The queen was not performing well.  She was a…

Homesteading: The Plan – How

Previous posts: Getting Started, Why, Where “The Journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step” In our case, we were dealing with a layoff and couldn’t keep up with the mortgage. It was then we asked ourselves, “why are we in this over-priced house on a tiny lot, living beyond our means?” I…

The Treasure Tree

WHAT IS SUMAC? Growing prolifically here at the cOsMic Owl is a little tree (large shrub technically) loaded with treasure. It’s the sumac. There are different varieties – smooth, staghorn, winged. We have winged sumac (Rhus copallina). It has a piece of foliage growing along the stem of the compound leaves, in between the leaflets….

Homesteading: The Plan – Where

You want to homestead and have created a plan and have your reasons for homesteading (the “why”).  Next on the list is where will you homestead. You are probably imagining  several acres with crops and chickens and all sorts of farm implements to start homesteading; that you’ll need to sell your urban or sub-urban home…

Homesteading: The Plan – Why

As I wrote in the first part of this series, Homesteading: Getting Started , we consider the “why, when, what and how” of homesteading. Today we’ll look at one of the list items on the plan – “why”. Be sure to check out the links at end. If you are considering homesteading, the “why” is…

Fall Garden Update

This is my first serious attempt at a Fall garden. I prefer it over a Summer garden, though I did plant just a few Summer things. I want pumpkins this year. Specifically, I want PIE pumpkins this year. I thought a crop of bush beans for preserving would also be a good idea. Then I’d…

Goldenrod: Friend or Foe?

Many have contributed their Fall sniffles to Goldenrod. However, it may actually be Ragweed that is causing the itchy, watery eyes and runny noses. Goldenrod may be the treatment you need. As nature includes poisonous, irritating plants, she also provides the remedy and it’s usually nearby. Goldenrod Also called Blue Mountain Tea Scientific name: Solidago…

Homesteading – Getting Started

Homesteading is a lifestyle of self-sufficiency. It is characterized by subsistence agriculture, home preservation of foodstuffs, and it may or may not also involve the small scale production of textiles, clothing, and craftwork for household use or sale. You’ve got the itch but don’t know where to begin? I can relate. Everyone’s circumstances are different….

The Flowers are Smiling

It’s that time of year in Oklahoma where the temps, humidity, and heat indices are high making for a miserable and potentially dangerous time to work outside. As we were finally adjusting to the longer work days now we must adjust to the hotter work days. That means getting as much done as we can…

My Alter Ego is a Chicken Farmer

This is my husband. Desk job in a high rise by day, budding chicken farmer evenings and weekends (and bee keeper and berry grower). He decided he wanted to raise meat chickens. The hens we have now are mine and they are protected from ever becoming food until their time expires naturally. There were a…

Homestead Buzz – The Trapout

Day One In April, Deacon’s bee instructor, mentor, and friend, was informed of a bee hive in a tree in our little town. They went into town to scope it out and she asked Deacon if he would like to catch it and he accepted the challenge with her guidance. The Trapout The first thing they…

What Vintners Do

They make wine, of course. Well, they don’t just “make” wine, they produce a unique product spawned by their love of the art and curiosity. We were fortunate to know someone who had a prolific pear tree and welcomed others to take pears off of his hands…and his lawn. Three of us went to load…