Surprise Present

mulberry tree with berries I have lived in this house, on this property, for a very long time. The longest I’ve lived anywhere by double.

And I like to think that I’m an observant person because I usually am.

But this totally slipped by me for who knows how long. Until a few days ago.

(Actually, it was Cait who noticed it while home because her two roommates contracted covid. But that’s another story.)

A MULBERRY TREE!! Bearing mulberries. Lots of them!

So, of … Read more

Maple Sugaring Season Just in Time!

So it seems that tapping 2 maple trees gives us just enough syrup to get through until the next maple tap.

But I knew as soon as my family got a taste of this, I’d have to be making more. So, along with their annual garlic allotment,  I’ll be adding 2 more trees into maple production for this year.

Though, at the moment, with daytime temps in the minus digits, it’s looking like we’re still a few weeks away. It’ll … Read more

How to Collect Jewelweed Seeds

If you have any jewelweed plants in your vicinity, this is the perfect time of year to harvest their seeds. If you’ve never tried these treats before (they taste very similar to sunflower or pumpkin seeds), you’re in for a surprise. In more ways than one. : )

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My First Pint of Homemade Maple Syrup

5 gallons of sap collected in 3 days

Strained out bits, bugs, and particles through cheesecloth

Boiled 85% down on our outdoor grill (Maybe next year, I’ll build a fire box…)

Finished the last on my stove so I could watch to make sure it didn’t burn or turn to candy.

This is what I’m left with.
Unbelievably yummy!

Pure joy.

 … Read more

How to Tap a Maple Tree in 5 Easy Steps

I’ve always wanted to try making my own maple syrup. From past reading, I knew it was easy to do, didn’t require a lot of paraphernalia, and was relatively idiot proof.

So I decided this was the year. I took a 1-hour class, bought my equipment and picked out two beautiful old Maple trees right off my deck. I’m not looking to go into business–I just want to make enough for my family, so two trees ought to be plenty.… Read more

One of the Most Incredible Scents on the Planet

Flowering-black-locust

This is a Black Locust tree. Our property is full of them. And at this time of year, the most glorious scent wafts through the air. I do believe it may be my all-time most favorite smell. If only the web had a scratch-n-sniff feature… But come to find out, perfumeries have also discovered this heavenly scent and its used in many perfumes.

It’s also one of my all-time favorite wild edibles The flower clusters taste like the sweetest of … Read more

Speaking of Outdoor Snacking — We’re Talking Bumper Crop

My cherry and plum trees are exploding with fruit! I can’t even begin to describe the joy this gives me.

cherries

Seriously, if you haven’t yet planted a couple of fruit trees, what are you waiting for?! It couldn’t be simpler. And then you, too, will find yourself grinning from ear to ear over the never-ending wonders of nature.… Read more