The Weekly Digs #166

by Becky
Published: Updated:

In the Garden

We are in a major heat wave right now! It was 92ºF today and will be 100ºF tomorrow. When I checked the 14 day forecast we are not going to get below 90ºF for the high temperature in the foreseeable future. It’s also very humid, which is a double whammy. 

I needed to plant my sweet potatoes but was worried about them getting transplant shock from the heat. Once I realized it wasn’t getting any cooler I planted them anyway. A few of them looked a little sad at first, then they all perked up within an hour! Sweet potatoes are much more resilient than tomatoes. They really like the heat once they get going so now I’m glad they are in the ground.

Each day I do about an hour of weeding in the morning or evening, then I have a couple of garden tasks to get done. Earlier this week, I helped the kids start to set up their tomato trellis. They are using cattle panels because it’s easier for them. 

Other things we did this week are mulched potatoes with hay from our land, pulled out our kale (it was interplanted in the green bean row) and added compost in its place. The kale was going to seed and I was tempted to leave it long enough to save seed but after last year’s harlequin bug problem I figured I better take it out. 

I saw one harlequin bug on the plants as I was pulling them and promptly destroyed it. I fed the kale to the chickens for good measure so they would eat all the leaves and any eggs. The kale was also starting to shade the green beans so it was a good move to take it out. 

We also pulled up some of our carrots and had a really good harvest of lots of food this week! I picked snap peas, shelling peas, carrots, strawberries, rhubarb, dill, and garlic scapes. 

Time off!

My older two boys are visiting family in New Jersey this week and part of next week. That left Cam and I with the younger two and they were sad they didn’t get to go do all the fun things. So we had decided to take a mini vacation and go to Branson, MO for a few days.

We saw an illusionist show called Reza. The kids LOVED it. Then we went to the theme park, Silver Dollar City, the next day. It was very fun and very needed. The kids were happy and the getaway left me feeling more recharged here at home and ready to get things done. 

Once we got home, I did a lot more picking in the garden and spent the rest of the day cooking meals for an upcoming video I’m doing. It was a good week. I hope all your gardens are and efforts to homestead are going well! I really enjoy reading the comments you leave here about what’s going on where you are. 

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Laurel M. June 12, 2022 - 9:15 pm

I’m glad you got to play with the kids! We’re in a heat wave in Utah, too. It’s supposed to rain tomorrow, so my sweet potatoes will go in then, cucumbers too. I’ve found that if I don’t have enough mulch for the garden, it’s more important to put it on the beds than the walks. We don’t get muddy here, but we HAVE to keep the moisture in. Drought is bad.

theseasonalhomestead June 18, 2022 - 11:18 pm

That totally makes sense about the mulch. We normally get more rain but right now its all heat and no rain in the forecast. We are more humid than Utah though. I’m also trying to get some of my garden beds mulched for that very reason!

Joanna Kowalewski June 13, 2022 - 12:59 am

The heat is horrible here in Corpus Christi, too 🥵 Our heat index has been about 110 for over a week! I miss your garden tours this year. Why aren’t you doing them? You do such a beautiful job on your land with everything you have planted. How are the berries coming along? Do you worry that all of the seed from the tall grasses growing up around your garden will get in there? Are you searching for a brush hog? Is that what it’s called?🤔 Well, anyhow, I hope all is well and I’m so happy for you that you were able to get away for a few days ❤️

theseasonalhomestead June 18, 2022 - 11:14 pm

Hi Joanna, I’m cleaning up my garden and finishing some planting so I can share soon. I feel like it’s like inviting friends over to see it when I share on video so want things in good shape, ya know? The heat isn’t helping me get much done though. Berries are doing well but now That I’m thinking about it the new ones probably need watered with all this heat. Thanks for the reminder 🙂 We have a riding lawn mower and Cam and the boys cut the grass around the garden with that. We have a brush hog too, but for the pasture grasses the cows do most of the mowing for that 🙂

Brittany Peterson June 13, 2022 - 4:49 pm

It is supposed to hit 92 degrees here the end of the week in northern North Dakota. I have been talking to my garden giving it a pep talk as us humans don’t like it that hot in ND, will hope the strong survive 🙂

theseasonalhomestead June 18, 2022 - 11:09 pm

Smart thinking! I was actually just reading Charles Dowding’s No Dig book yesterday and he was saying how much plants respond to our emotions, for real! Haha! So I guess if you are positive then the plants will be too 🙂

Erin June 13, 2022 - 8:17 pm

Here in Northern Idaho we’re having such a cold start to summer! We have barely gotten above 70 and that’s very unusual this late in the year. On Friday I abandoned my plans to grow any melons, as even in my low hoop tunnels the seed had not germinated in over 2 weeks and there’s no way we will get any melons with a late start like this. I planted more potatoes in that section instead.
The peas I planted at the beginning of May are only about 6 inches tall. And the corn? A couple of plants have barely poked up. It’s been a good year for lettuce 😄.

Fun to read about what you’re busy with there! I love the garden tour videos also!

theseasonalhomestead June 18, 2022 - 11:07 pm

I’ve been hearing that about most of the Pacific Northwest breaking records for cold. I wish we could past some of our heat to you, haha. That was smart of you to plant more potatoes, they are a good crop to have in winter.

Emily June 14, 2022 - 1:53 am

Hi Becky,

Just popping in here to say hi! Time off is so good for rest and renewal. Especially when you live a lifestyle of constant work. Here in Northern Minnesota it’s been rainy and 60s (much nicer than 100s haha). It’s my first time planting in zone 4b and I’ve been learning so much already. I’m from Kansas where things are a little different there, probably similar to you all in Arkansas! I’m a new gardener and hope to have a full running homestead some day. I love how you started one step at a time and that has been so inspirational to me. Thank you for all your insight and know that people out in a world really look up to you! Cheers from Lutsen MN, Emily

theseasonalhomestead June 18, 2022 - 11:03 pm

Hi Emily, wow I bet northern Minnesota is quite a change from Kansas! That is so fun and I really appreciate the kind words. When I hear how much sharing what we are doing helps others, it also motivates me to keep going. Especially when things get hard like right now when it’s scorching hot, haha!

Kat June 26, 2022 - 9:24 pm

Oh this is so fun to see someone from Lutsen on here! I’m just north of you! It must be a big change from Kentucky but the North Shore is just so special! I hope your enjoying it! It would be fun to connect someway, maybe through a seasonal homestead virtual event someday?
P.S if you haven’t made it up to trail center yet, they have iconic pancakes!

Kat June 26, 2022 - 9:25 pm

Whoops! Kentucky* haha

Kontessa Crist June 15, 2022 - 12:44 am

I just love reading and watching all your videos. It’s inspired me to grow more of my own food for me and my family.
Thank you for all you do!

theseasonalhomestead June 18, 2022 - 10:57 pm

Thanks Tessa!

Wendy June 15, 2022 - 1:20 pm

Here in the Netherlands we have a whopping 87 🙂 We live very close to the coast so we luckily seldom have your high temps. I do not like these higher temps. Garden is doing well, we have to water a lot cause of dry conditions. As usual some things do well and some things do not. Cause I have a very small garden and think big I want to try to let my zuchinni grow up a tipi. Hope it works. I have only Tiny Tim tomatoes (cherry tomatoe) in containers. So no canning here. In the Netherlands you cannot buy a pressure canner so we can only do water bath canning. I loved your you tube video’s. Keep up the good work and enjoy life as well.
Groetjes, Wendy

theseasonalhomestead June 18, 2022 - 10:56 pm

Thank you Wendy! Nice to hear from you! I think your teepee idea is great!

Madeleine June 15, 2022 - 8:28 pm

I send you lots of greetings from Germany. The forecast for the next weekend is amazing here too. We are going to get 37°C, must be 98°F I think. I had to empty my big water butts because my husband is expanding our basement and they had to be empty for that. I’m really sad about this, but looking forward to have a little cellar soon. Harvested the first raspberry and honeyberry this week. Have a nice week full of harvests over there. Madeleine

theseasonalhomestead June 18, 2022 - 10:54 pm

Hi Madeleine, how fun! We are harvesting a few raspberries now too. I’ve never grown honeyberries before but have been hearing more and more about them. Do you like them or are they a little tart?

Theresa June 16, 2022 - 6:29 pm

I started watching you on youtube about a week ago and cannot get enough! You inspire me. I just got onto your blogs, and I feel at home. I’m in Kansas and yes the heat has been crazy hot. I have a greenhouse and what I thought was a large garden. I was researching, something about preserving food, and found you! What a blessing that God has brought you and your beautiful family into my life. I’m a mother of 8, with one daughter, and a Grandmother to 4, with another on the way. I’ve always been high on nutrition, so this year I’ve started growing my own herbs and medicinal plants alongside my garden. My challenge is, I want to do this homesteading thing fulltime, but am not able to just yet. Happy gardening! I’m looking forward to many more posts from you! Have a terrific week!!

theseasonalhomestead June 18, 2022 - 10:52 pm

Thank you Theresa! Glad to have you here! It’s nice to hear about you too! Sounds like you have a wonderful garden and family.

Erica June 20, 2022 - 12:28 am

I agree! I just found you a couple weeks ago and I’m obsessed- binge watching. I’m so inspired! I have such a teeny tiny garden in comparison but I can’t barely maintain that! 🤣 I’m finding you totally motivational though and I’m excited about what’s growing in my garden here in Asheville, NC. Trying to get my two boys more excited about eating vegetables!

Emily S. June 18, 2022 - 5:15 pm

I learn so much from you, Becky! Keep all the awesome content coming!! 😃 I don’t know if anyone else would be interested in this, but I’d love to hear how you encouraged your kids to grow up eating all the vegetables! My kiddos are pretty good about it, but could always be better 😊 Also, how were you able to eat well while pregnant? I’m currently in my third pregnancy, and I’ve been so sick that there’s not much I can eat, despite normally having a pretty clean diet. Fresh grown stuff is out of the question right now. Any tips? Thanks so much!!

theseasonalhomestead June 18, 2022 - 10:49 pm

Hi Emily! Thanks! I’ll add that to my idea list for future blog posts for sure! To sum it all up though, I never fed my kids any “kids” type foods. No boxes of Mac and Cheese, no fruit snacks, no hot dogs (well except on rare occasions like going camping). We don’t have it in the house so they don’t eat it. My oldest actually just came home from a church trip and said, “I can’t wait to eat real food again!” Haha! If they want junk food they are allowed to get it but have to buy it with their own money.

I actually had very little morning sickness with my pregnancies until my last. So I’m probably not much help in that area, sorry! Maybe try things like if only bread sounds good, go with whole wheat instead of white. Or if you’re craving something sweet, go for a fruit based sweet rather than a pure sugar treat.

Caroline Mann June 19, 2022 - 12:57 pm

Hi Becky,
I found your Youtube videos and your blog last week while I was searching for garden information. What an inspiration! My husband and I accidentally became “homesteaders” last year when our house in the city sold in 1 week and we had nowhere to live (our kids are grown and living in other cities right now). We quickly built a bathroom in our barn on our country land about an hour outside Houston and moved in! We thought it would be temporary but this life is like no other! Since then, we finished the barn apartment, have 7 chickens, a dog, a worm farm and a bee hive!! HERE’S MY QUESTION….How do homesteaders manage vacations? Who watches the chickens and dogs? Thank you!

theseasonalhomestead June 30, 2022 - 8:51 pm

That’s a tough one. We have had friends do it in the past when it was just the chickens and garden. Also paid a teenager from our church to watch everything. We moved to our land in 2020 and haven’t had any long vacations yet with our family. Usually just a weekend and we fill food and waterers to the max then leave and all is well when we return.

For the future though, my sister recently moved nearby so I’ll either have her watch everything or have our neighbor do it. They are good friends of ours. It’s nice to have someone who has experience watch everything but if there isn’t other options you can always train someone to do it.

Tracy McGee June 22, 2022 - 12:46 pm

Oddly, Southwest Florida looks to be cooler than you, low 90’s mostly. This time of year we are able to plant sweet potatoes and Everglades tomatoes, those mainly in shade. I however have had poor luck with either. I’m not big on chemicals so they don’t survive plus we’re off a preserve so have salt water intrusion. Always something killing them off. I am learning to can but have to buy my produce which is not great quality. Not able to have a big garden in my subdivision anyways.
Like you I have stomach issues, GERD/acid reflux , and also have autoimmunes. I truly feel that what we eat is either healing or killing. It’s finding what works that’s hard. I’m trying but sometimes it gets so frustrating.
Absolutely love watching your journey and wish I were 20 years younger to keep up. Sending blessings to you and your family.


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