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Prepare Your Homestead for the Spring Season
Christmas has come and gone and the new year is quickly approaching (tomorrow to be exact!) so it’s about time to think about how to prepare your homestead for the Spring Season! It’s been crazy here on The Green Acre Homestead the last few months and that means I’m way behind on my usual routine. If I were right on schedule, and if that existed, this is what my routine would be. I want to note that, even though I’m a week or two behind, I’ll still be carrying out these activities, just minus 2 weeks! Also, keep in mind that I’m in West Central Florida. We have no snow here so my preparations will be quite different than the folks that homestead in the snow. Here we go.
- Start Seeds
- I’ll be starting peppers, broccoli, tomatoes, peas, peppers, spinach, cabbage, you name it! I’ve had a tough time gardening and found this great chart. Although I’m skeptical about growing broccoli anytime after December I’m going to follow it step by step this season and see if I have any better luck.
- Between January and February, I’ll be mixing in compost into our gardens to let sit for a bit. Depending on what I’m planting, I think I’ll add our traditional hot compost to some beds and our deep litter compost from the hen house to others. I’ll be calling our local county extension office to have my soil sample test results explained to me so I understand completely what needs to go into each bed!
- Weed those gardens now, Y’all! This is one of the most important things to do while you prepare your homestead for the
seasonof spring. I already have weeds popping up through my raised beds. Granted, I live in Florida and today the high was 81˚ so there’s no frost to help me out. If you seed a weed, pull it before they have the chance to spread. You won’t regret them work put in.
- Fix any raised bed boards! I have a few raised beds that are in serious need of TLC. Every time I add more dirt the hammered in nails slide a little further out of the connecting board and that just won’t do.
- Last, if you haven’t already, plan your Spring garden! I use The Old Farmer’s Almanac Garden Planner and love it. It’s $25 for one year and $40 two and worth every penny! I am not an affiliate but totally would be if it was an option. Read this post if you’d like to know why I think it’s the best garden planner you’ll find.
Spring is one of the big fertilizing and pruning times of the year and this is crucial while you plan to prepare your homestead for the spring season. Our mulberry bushes are almost completely dormant and will need to be pruned along with our muscadine vines. The peach trees will get some love along with the blueberry bushes and everyone will get fertilized as they should. We’re hoping for our first great peach and blueberry harvest this year and our loquat trees look like they’ll provide a bountiful harvest, also. It’s going to be great and I’m looking up and forward to the future of 2019!
I mentioned earlier that the weeds will take off once it starts getting hot enough in the spring and the grass is no exception so prepare that homestead while you still can! It’s always a good idea to keep debris to a minimum on your homestead, farm, etc. to reduce the chance of termites, rodents, and other pests. Removing the debris from your yard before spring will just make it easier to start mowing the lawn. No stop, remove, and start again! To be honest, I can’t tell you how many garden hoses I cut just enough to not work because I thought I could get over them. Complete laziness gets you nowhere good, friends.
Schedule Oil Changes
We only have a lawn mower and weed whacker so I do my own oil changes. It’s quite easy to learn how! If you have larger equipment such as tractors you’ll want to schedule their oil changes. Whether you do it yourself or you have someone else assist you, it’ll be handy to have it done come Spring.
Clean Your Tools
As an aspiring gardener, I’m ashamed to admit that I rarely clean my tools. I’ll be changing that this year, though. I plan to set up a little garden tool cleaning space with a simple potting table. Gardening has really given me a run for my money and I’m planning for 2019 to be the year of plentiful harvests for me! I’m actually off to buy potting soil today!
You want to keep your tools separated and clean them between each use to fight against spreading any possible disease or infection. I think one of my beds may have a fungus so I’ve been very careful about it all, thankfully. While I prepare my homestead for this spring season, I’ll be making a note to add “CLEAN YOUR TOOLS” to the list of what to do more often.
Springtime is chick time! Say it with me! I love raising chicks. I’ll be putting a few duck eggs in the incubator this spring season along with chicken eggs eventually. If you’re looking to raise chicks this spring, you’ll want to start making accommodations to prepare your homestead for your new additions. Clean your brooder and all your water and feed vessels to make sure they’re ready. If this is your first time raising chicks, I recently wrote a “how-to” post that you can find here called Raising Chicks for Beginners. Raising Chicks for Beginners will also tell you where I order my chicks when I don’t incubate!
I do a big cleaning on the farm every season. The hen house is given a deep clean along with the rabbit hutches. The litter in the hen house will be set aside to age a bit and I’ll keep the rabbit manure to add nitrogen along the way.
I’ll also clean out all the feed storage containers and start incorporating fodder back into the swing. We’re also going to be trying to dry duckweed for the animals this year which will add a great nutrition source to our homestead!
Organizing doesn’t only happen in the house. My shed is a total mess right now! I’ll be giving it a complete rundown/declutter/purge session before Spring hits and the “real work” floods in. Aside from organizing my shed, I’ll do a re-work of the fodder shed, tidy the outside kitchen, and finish picking up any stray pieces of wood or PVC in the yard that I’ve left along the way. Spring Cleaning isn’t only an in-the-home activity and I find it crucial for the yard to prepare your homestead for the spring season!
Hop to it!
There are so many things I’ll also be doing inside the house to prepare for the Spring but that’s another post. What do you do to prepare your homestead or farmstead for the Spring season?