Brightside Acres
West Virginia Wildgrown®

Spring 2013

Got Pretty Chickens?

The original three: Butterscotch, Cream, & Stickerz. That's Thalia, Calliope, Clio and Jake :-). Cream: a true mother hen. The generations are getting to know one another. Clio, Thalia, Jake and Calliope. Thalia, Clio and Calliope are Ameracauna. Jake is a Black Maran.

May Medley

May brought every kind of weather to our mountain. From temps in the low 20s to temps in the low 80s. On the 13th it snowed most of the day, though it didn't stick. Perhaps the biggest surprise was the frigid temps on the 24th and 25th, which killed tender herbs and burned plants of all kinds. This year's fruit crop remains an unknown. As does the vegetable crop, unless we can get the meadow voles and field mice under control!

Buddy & Chips May 2. The whole gang taking a lunch break May 2. Finalizing the 50-foot low tunnel. Radishes May 2. Broccoli & cauliflower. Snow peas May 2. Spinach sprouts May 2. May 3 Grandmother tree May 8. Quaker Ladies May 10. Violets and Dandelions May 10. Trilium Grandiflorum. American Toads. Grandmother apple tree May 12. Blueberry bushes May 12. Blueberry beds. The 50-foot potato bed covered with Agribon. Potato planting May 12. Blueberry bushes. Grandmother apple tree blossoms May 12. Covering the blueberry beds May 12. May 20. Lemon Balm May 12. Bush cherries May 12 Snow May 13. May 20. View at the Brightside gate May 20. Lilacs May 22. David & Buddy May 13. Radishes May 12. Dawn with a smooth green snake.

Early Wildflowers

Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara). Coltsfoot leaf. Coltsfoot blossoms. Coltsfoot. Dutchman's Breeches foliage. Dutchman's Breeches. False Hellebore (Veratrum viride). Purple Flowering Violet (Viola cucullata). A steep draw covered in emergent Ramps (Allium tricoccom). White Baneberry "Doll's Eyes" (Actaea pachypoda). Wood Anemone (Anemone quinquefolia). Trillium with flower not-yet-opened. Looks like a "Wake Robin" (Trillium erectum). Spring Beauty (Claytonia virginica). Trout Lily (Erythronium americanum). Trout Lily. Trout Lily. Trout Lily.

Signs of Spring: April at Brightside!

First coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara) spotted on the Old Pike Road, April 2. A skunk wandering along the drive, April 8. More coltsfoot, April 10. The Pike is dusty already! April 11. Remnants of the 10-foot snowdrifts. April 11. These steps at KB Wilmoth's were buried in snow just a week ago. Lilac at the Brightside gate, April 11. Looking toward Arbovale. Where's the snow? Red maple buds, April 17. Forsythia on the north side of the house, April 17. A female American toad in a driveway mud-puddle. American toad eggs! Red maple. A new snow pea fence. Seeds in the ground, April 17! Buds on the Grandmother Apple Tree, April 17. New chickies, April 19. Ameracauna and a bonus black-feathered bird! Chickies huddled under their new 20-watt brooder. First mullein (Verbascum thapsus) harvest, April 18. First coltsfoot blossom harvest, April 18. Grandmother Apple Tree, April 17. A tree swallow perched in a hawthorn tree. A tree swallow staking claim to a blue bird house. Seed bed prepared for spinach, April 16. Forsythia April 16. Scallions planted last fall. Mache planted last fall. Our three Rhode Island Reds are back to spring production! In the garden April 22. April 22. Ramps (Allium tricoccom) April 24. Cut-leaved toothwort (Cardamine concacenata) April 24. Purple-flowering violet (Viola cucullata) April 24. Field of ramps emerging in a steep draw. Ramp harvest. New potato bed April 23. Serviceberry (Amelanchier) blossoms April 24. Harvesting coltsfoot April 24. Garden beds covered with compost April 25. Blueberry beds April 25.