Snowbanks, Shrubs, and Spring Lavender

After the last time I updated here, we have accomplished so much. We do still have a long way to go, but there is visible progress.

We laid 40 ft of the rock line holding back terrace number one. I told you that we had only 1350 feet to go. Ha! Charlie and I had the best intentions to keep laying rock, but …I discovered as the temperatures kept dropping it got harder to pick up the rocks from the pile. Rocks freeze together apparently. Who knew? Finally I gave up and texted Kevin.

I asked if he could manage to spare an hour sometime soon to move some rocks to the terrace for us. I was very surprised when he came over quickly and spent exactly one hour here. That was unexpected and so very much appreciated. It was the New Year and I thought I wouldn’t hear from him for a few days. He moved enough rock spreading it over a couple of terraces in that one hour that we will need at least a month to line them all up.

Magic! We got 80 feet laid that day. Double what we laid the first day. Now only 1270 feet to go.

Rock spread out ready for terrace building

It looks like a disaster but trust me….THIS is PROGRESS! There has to be chaos before order can happen.

Stone Circle Building Progress

Than I woke up the next day and it had snowed 8 inches!

We had to snow blow, plow and shovel as the snow continued to fall all day long. It added another 6 inches on top to total 14 inches by dark. Snow blowing until 10 pm after all day wears a body out. Still it was not done. When the sun came up the next day, it was a bit disheartening to see yet another 7 inches on top of the cleared areas and piled on the areas still unfinished. Snow removal started again for another day.

Snow covering the Stone Circle in New Era, MI
Snow covered Stone Circle in New Era, MI

Charlie got the back blade put on the tractor and told me how to use it. He had tried it the day before and thought it was going to be a bit of a waste of time. I figured out how to set the blade a couple of inches from the ground which moved most of the snow but avoided digging the ground in the uneven areas. The tractor seemed to do well with no issues so I got a bit more brave.

I didn’t say anything to Charlie but decided to try going down to the pond road…just a LITTLE ways.. to the fire pit area, around through the woods, up through the back yard and through to the front yard. How bad could it go, right? I mean those areas were untouched so it was only 21 inches deep.

(How much does it cost to pull a tractor out of a snow drift?) I do not know what I was worried about. The tractor didn’t even hesitate.

We were in the process of getting the doe barn fencing changed, hay and feeders moved, gravel and bedding down, and all the does combined together. With all that snow removal work, it delayed us a few days but we got them together finally. It was a bit shocking with how quickly and well the two groups blended together.

Phoebe in the Fall 2021

Phoebe, the very pregnant Angora doe, walked into the barn and immediately picked a fight with my Fiesta. After that, even the bossy boots Kit Kat, deferred to the Angora does because Fiesta let Phoebe push her around. Fiesta is the dairy goat herd queen so the others followed her. All was peaceful for about 3 days. There is a bit of milling about going on now but seems pretty quiet so far.

Phoebe is due to have her babies about Valentine’s day so I will keep you posted. The Angora does are not used to Livestock Guardian Dogs but seem completely unfussed with Miss Scarlet. It went pretty well …considering.

Scarlet with her goats

I have been stuck in the house with all the snow and an added layer of ice over everything made it too slippery to chance falling. Charlie has taken care of things for me outside and I have been trying to get the lavender order sorted. I put a large lavender order in with two companies back in the fall. I emailed one of the companies just before the New Year asking to cut the order down a little as it was before the deadline for their orders. I have had numerous emails back and forth since but with each one it seems to be getting more confusing. I do not have confidence that I will even get my order. I started looking for another company and found the varieties that I wanted as well as two others that I had previously wanted and been unable to locate. So it all worked out well.

Alba Intermedia – white lavender

With all our delays, a decision was made to cut back and slow down. It was becoming overwhelming to try to keep up with it all. I have struggeled to even make a decision on which lavenders and shrubs to choose with so many to choose from. We have not cut down our lavender varieties but rather have cut down the quantities of the lavender in EACH variety. Our original goal was to plant half the field in the spring, but we will now only attempt a quarter of the field.

Miss Katherine – pink lavender

One part of the field we are planting is called the Moon garden. I am planting white with some pale pinks in that area. Some formal shrubs with some informal perennials mixed in and happy annuals tossed here and there. I see that area as soft and feminine. It will be a good photo spot for pictures, a book nook, or a spot for spinning yarn.

Bridal Wreath Spirea

Quiet contemplation and soft beauty all around. Some of the shrubs will take a bit to get to these lovely sizes but this is just an idea of what is coming. It has been very difficult to narrow down choices for planting and to try to get the right “feeling” for that spot. I hope you can start to see the quiet and peace as much as I can.

Snow and Quiet

Until next time….all is quiet!

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