Just another site

I built a new raised bed for potatoes using old corrugated barn roofing and electric fence posts. It won’t win any awards for beauty, that’s for sure! When it comes time to ‘dig’ the spuds, I’ll just remove one side and let ’em come rolling out to Daddy! I have 16 Russet seeds in there. I also, for the first time, quartered and seared them, so we have a whole new experiment going on with this bed. All of my potato crop is set up to ‘hill’ this year. That’s a first for me. I’m hoping, by using a hilling process, to double my yield from last year. I estimate that I can hill these another two feet!


Here’s a sample of the 1/3 gallon olla batch that I’m working on. I need two more hit my goal of a dozen over the Easter break. Tomorrow I make those two, attach labels on eight, and make twelve lids. Almost through with the batch!
We’ve had two straight nights of rain showers; not much, but wet stuff from the sky has been hard to come by these past three years.
Next will be some one gallon versions so stay tuned!

I started making some 1/3 gallon ollas. The one on the left is the 1/3 gallon and the one on the right is a one pint model. I did a run of the one pinters and sold all but 9. School is winding down and I’m finding a few hours here and there to make ollas. I hope to get another dozen of the 1/3 gallon models made over the Easter break and then jump up to the one gallon model. I have an order for two dozen of the 1 1/2 gallon models so those will follow. Looks like I have a second job to go to in the evening…

I’ve built a small greenhouse for germinating seed and doing some hydroponics. I used two livestock panels set inside of a 2 x 6 frame. Next I have to get some real greenhouse covering and ‘skin it out’! Should be a lot of fun in the West Texas wind!

One Pint Ollsa

Here’s a fresh batch of one pint ollas. Perfect for small containers. Some of these are going to the local Master Gardener class. I present an olla making workshop for them tomorrow night. Should be loads of fun!

New Greenhouse

I’ve built a green house! It’s really small; 7′ x 8’5″ on the inside. I was able to get the end walls and door/window vent framed up this afternoon just before the rain came in! Hopefully the drought won’t be as bad as it has been for the last three years.

Freshly thrown Olla!

I’m back into olla production. This is one of a dozen of my one pint models. I’ve revised the neck a little from last year; making it possible to bury it a bit deeper. There’s not quite so much flare to the throat either so it should fill better without that bathtub swirl.
When I say it’s a one pint model, it will actually hold closer to 3 cups and then there’s always the volume of the wall thickness that will hold a little more, beyond the interior volume. So they aren’t useful as measuring devices in the kitchen!
Once I get these finished, I’ll move up to the next size. If you’d like some ollas, let me know. The prices are the same as last year. I have those posted in an archived post.

Dry land crop

Here’s the dry land crop. In the image below you can see the irrigation pipe. From this angle it’s hard to see the water coming out of the pipe but it’s there.

Maybe they will cast all right and I can get them cleaned up down the road one day and post them.

Casting Iron in New Mexico

I’ll be casting some iron sculpture in NM this week at Mesalands Community College 16th Annual Iron Pour.

I have 2 small pieces. These are the waxes that I’ll invest, burn out and cast. They’re sitting on a sheet of computer paper for scale.

One is a furrow irrigated crop and the other is dry land! They should prove to be a challenge to cast since each one is about 5-6 inches square and 7 inches tall. Each one will have at least 30 vents on top and who knows how the gate system will turn out!

Wish me luck!

Free Fertility

We had some pretty stiff wind here last week. It blew grain sorghum residue into the adjacent ditches. So, I gathered up six truck loads for mulch/compost materials for my market garden!
It will only go to waste if it stayed in the ditch. The County would burn it or it would have washed down stream, damming the ditch and washing out the road so I helped out a bit and re-purposed it!