Making Quince Preserves

quinceOne of the seven wonders of the preserving world is Quince Jam (Preserves). It starts out as a beautiful, aromatic, inedible fruit. However, you can devote about 6 hours to it and turn it into something wonderful. Preserving books call is Quince Preserves. I call it Quince Jam. We have a small tree which lives in the temporary turkey pen and despite being roosted in by turkeys and occasionally nibbled on by goats, produces a bumper crop of quinces each year. This year was no different. To make the preserves, you peel and chunk up the creamy white quinces. You make a sugar syrup, add the chunks and then (patiently) boil it down for hours and hours. As the mixture boils down, it thickens and turn a lovely ruby shade.

 

Kids and Gardens – a good mix

We weaned the first group of cashmere kids (11) a week ago. Their home for 3 weeks away from their mothers is a small pasture across the fence from our early garden. They learn quickly that this is a very good deal as they get “throwovers”. Throwovers include weeds and other garden plant disposals thrown over the fence by the gardener. Here they are getting the lower leaves from the sunflowers and weeds. Recyclying at its finest!

If you garden and have goats…

sunflowers and goats

If you plant sunflowers, don’t plant them too close to the fence separating your garden from the goat herd. The north side of the sunflowers planted at the edge of the garden took some abuse. Goats were happy. If they could have just stretched their necks a bit further, I’d have no sunflowers left at all. I think these will recover; goats have been moved to a different pasture.

A day in the garden – May 8th

Yesterday I spent in the garden. A nice cool, but mostly sunny day – perfect for setting out plants from the greenhouse. I planted 46 tomato plants (which may seem like a lot, but it’s a small number for me). The 46 doesn’t count the 10 Stupice tomato plants I put out a few weeks ago. The peas are thriving (3 varieties) and the blueberry plants are loaded with green berries. I think it’s going to be a great garden year. It’s nice to be able to plant early.

First blog post

The purpose of this blog is to change the format of our Goat Knoll website “What’s Up” section. This feature of the website was created in 2005 and was intended as a view for site visitors on what was happening currently on the farm. There was no opportunity for visitor questions/feedback and sometimes it was only updated a couple times a year. This old history has been left on the website here: 2005 – Feb 2016 What’s Up

New updates will be on this blog – perhaps updated a bit more often. We’ll just see where this goes…