Clearing an area and keeping it clear is an issue right now. If you bush hog an area and do not have the means to keep the growth down, you've wasted your time, effort and money. Although buying a tractor to do this would be great, with only two acres of land it seems like a waste. It would spend most of it's time in the barn.
That's a waste of resources. Plus repair bills on a largish tractor is expensive. Especially now with so much of the land filled with trees. So we opted for a tiny tractor that can also be used as a lawn mower. We got it second hand off of Craig's list. It'll haul a trailer behind it too. I imagine, I could even get a small tiller blade set up for the twice yearly turning of the gardens.
But getting back to the garden harvesting and preserving. A couple of weeks ago, I made a video of making no pectin added Triple Berry Jam for Mel. Now each of this berries ripen at different parts of the summer. I just gather them whenever they ripen and put them in the freezer. When I find the time and have the extra sugar...I'll make jam with them. Not to mention berry pies and cobbler. By putting up little by little like this no huge water bath canner is needed. A simple large pot will do.
Our cucumber harvest is coming along. I've calculated that we need ten half pints of pickle relish and ten pints of bread and butter pickles each year. I figured this by how many we used last year. That's really not a whole lot of cucumbers if you think about it. Eight medium sized Boston Pickling cucumber will fill five pint jars. We'll also do half a dozen pints of Kosher dill pickles. I make my relish out of zucchini instead of cucumbers. All the rest of the harvest pf zucchini and cucumbers is for fresh eating. All this canning stems from two of each plant.
Having a covered and screened porch helps in my canning endeavors. This is worth its weight in gold for the garden produce that can't wait to be canned later. We have an old Coleman propane camp stove and a couple of electric burners in our make shift kitchen at the back of the house. This is an essential for us. The house doesn't get heated in the summer with 100 degrees temperatures outside. A large fan keeps the porch from being over heated. I can can or cook to my heart's content. Well, almost.
Today, I got an estimate on the new driveway and the plumber to get my honey-do list partially completed. The new driveway is way cheaper than I allotted for. Yah!! No more getting stuck to my axle in red clay mud! Another YAH! The best part is they can start next week. The plumber still is about what I figured. The electrician has to put their bid in for the electrical work. Now, to find a handyman to build my ramps and deck, and we'll be set. At least for now. We are pricing new gutters and downspouts for the rain catchment system too.
Things are hopping and finally coming together for us. It's about time.
Y'all have a blessed day!