A homesteading kind of day

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A little sandwich bread for the week thanks to my 40ish year old Joy of Cooking.

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A pan of frozen tomatoes from the garden abundance of 2012 willing their way into spaghetti sauce (with DH’s deft assistance.)

This year’s winter garden is crawling along the cloudy days. Cabbage and chard, broccoli and kale, garlic and onions, and some pea and lettuce sprouts crossing their leaves for the harder freezes being over for the season.

I don’t think I would’ve managed a winter garden this year without DH. He hauled the manure and turned it in. He gathered (*cough* nicked from the curb *cough*) leaves for insulating (and feeding) mulch. He’s kept a mind on the watering and an eye on the forecast. He’s been truly wonderful (per usual, honestly.)

Why all of the extra help? The ankle is still healing and physical therapy is progressing, but these days, more than that, is all of the energy I’ve been allocating to growing something else 😉

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Before the freeze…

The ice (or snow, or both) that gripped so much of the country only gave a whisper of ice to those of us in Central Texas. Just the same, we had multiple nights in the 20s and a full 48 hours that didn’t rise above freezing. There were preparations to be done. The first of which? Capturing some final photos before the greenery melted and the flowers were zapped from their stems.

In came the African Blue Basil…
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Last year after the harvest, I left the roots in the soil in an attempt to maintain any microbial web they’d built in the soil. I was rewarded in the spring with a returning specimen. Fingers crossed for the same this spring…

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The rosemary in the background didn’t even shiver, but the butterfly weed has lost all vigor. Others I’ve pruned into the compost now that they’ve finished the cycle.

Texas Hummingbird Sage

Sage

Sage

Lantana

Snap dragon

Berries

The bees will surely miss the loss of so many winter blossoms. I will miss the bees until their return after a few sleepy months.

This one barely barely blinked with each passing freeze. I’ve forgotten its name – does anyone know?
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Perhaps it will keep any wakeful bees busy enough until the reemergence of nectar pots…

And Bill the Lime Tree came inside, complete with two limes left to savor when the winter doldrums set in.
Bill