Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Apples, Goats and the Weekend Projects

The apples on the Macintosh apple tree look pretty good ... from a distance.  They're bigger than last year and getting red.

Up close however, they look like this.  They've got scab, same as last year, and something new that makes these pale splotches.  Since I didn't do anything to the apples to stop scab (other than hoping it would magically not appear this year since it's been a dryer year), I shouldn't be surprised.  Thankfully it doesn't harm the usability of the apples.  I'd like to make cider again, and store some apples either by canning, drying, or just in a basket in the basement.  The lesson is that if I want better apples next year, I'll have to actually DO something to prevent the scab, plum curculio and whatever the splotchy stuff is.  And waiting until April to think about it (like I did this year) is too late.

I took a portable chair and a glass of wine over to sit with the goats for a bit last night.  They're such interesting creatures. This is Coco.
And so curious.  It's like they use their mouths to feel new things.
It was really nice not to have to run, run, run for a change.  I finally got the new wheel attached to the hand truck and the new chicken waterer hung, both 10 minute projects after I finally got to them.

A commenter mentioned the other day about getting the goats acclimated to the milking stand, which sounds like a great idea.  First, build a milking stand....  I also need to build them a hay feeder, so them're this weekend's projects.  I pulled plans for the milker and the feeder from the internet, and I think I have all the materials in scrap wood from other projects.  Hm. Maybe I am a homesteader after all.


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  2. From experience with both types of feeders on milking stands, removable and non-removable, I would suggest you either build the feeder so it's removable or purchase one of those hanging type plastic feeders. It's nice to be able to clean it out, dump it or empty it of water when you accidentally place the milking stand under a leak in your barn roof and it fills up with water . . . no that that's happened to me . . .

  3. Excellent suggestion! Thanks again for sharing your experience. You had the leaky-roof-in-the-goat-milking-stand experience so that I don't have to!