Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Homestead Highlight: Leslie


My greatest inspiration in my own backyard farming adventure has been to hear the experiences of others. I invite you to read along here as Homesteaders share their adventures and experiences from their own farms, backyards, and homes.
 
Want to be featured as a Homestead Highlight? I would love to hear about your experience. For more information follow the link to the information page and share your own homestead here at the Backyard Farming Connection! 



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Today I welcome Leslie to this space.



Leslie Colin Tribble lives in a small town in northwestern Wyoming and has just under an acre lot on the edge of the city limits.  She's recently begun her homestead journey, but has big plans for her little spot!  She blogs about nature and educational activities at Sagebrush Lessons.







Currently I have a “normal” yard with several pines, aspen, shrubs and a few perennials.  Last year I built my own raised beds, which worked wonderfully, despite the fact they aren’t even remotely level.





I also added in some carrot and potato cages.  So that was my homestead beginning!  I am definitely a newbie to this adventure.

I share my home and yard with two grown children who come and go, two aging dogs and two cats.  Not to mention deer, mice, rabbits, skunks and the occasional coyote or mountain lion passing through.

My plans for my little homestead are huge.  This year I will add to the growing space with more container gardens.  Digging in the soil really isn’t an option as my lot is situated right over a seam of surface shale.  I’ve always purchased my seeds wherever I can find them for cheap, but this year I want to experiment with heritage varieties.

I am making plans to add chickens but will have to wait until my Samoyed goes to the great milk bone in the sky.  He wouldn’t hurt them intentionally, but he is very curious and likes to play rough.  My collie would be great at caring for them and herding them about.



I also want to add to my flower beds.  Although they won’t feed my body they feed my soul and that makes the effort worthwhile.

My biggest success has been building the raised beds by myself.  They aren’t perfect but they’re functional!  My greatest contentions are the shale soil and the deer that enjoy my gardening efforts.  Oh, and the climate of Wyoming is a challenge too, with its frigid winters and howling winds in each season.

I work full-time at a variety of jobs - for our public library, as a writer and a nature guide for visitors to Yellowstone National Park.  My degrees are in Environmental Education and I blog about nature and educational activities at Sagebrush Lessons.  My heart is set on coming home full-time to write and homestead. 

 

9 comments:

  1. Awesome job on the raised beds! Sounds like they worked out well for you. Your dogs are so cute! I hope you can get chickens at some point in the future. They are so much fun and really complete a homestead!

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    1. Thanks for the kind words! It's been a rough week at my place - had to have the collie put down. Down to just the one dog now with chickens in the future.

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  2. I think you did a wonderful job on the raised beds. I like the idea of carrots in the the wire cages, keep purseing your dream, homesteading is a frame of mine, not where you live. Keep up the good work. Beautiful dogs you have there. Sheryl

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  3. Please elaborate about growing carrots in the wire cages. I have gophers and they harvest my root vegetables the day before I'd planned to. (smile) Maybe I'd have more success at growing veggies above ground. Thanks. Great article and best wishes to you in your homesteading adventure.

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    1. The carrots worked pretty well in the wire cages, but the cages needed to have a larger circumference and depth. Also, I didn't thin the seedlings out like I should have so they were rather stunted. I'll make one cage out of the two next year and put in a lot more soil. I had a lot of leftover wire fencing from another project so just used that and lined the sides with a fairly thick layer of newspaper and then straw. Maybe if you reinforced your cages with a fine mesh wire you could keep out the gophers - worth a try!

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  4. I think it is great that you took on building your raised beds on your own. They look great by the way and look like they serve their purpose well. They don't need to be perfect to work. You sound busy but all of the things you do sound very rewarding. I love my flowers too and yes I agree very good for the soul. Keep pursuing the homestead life, it only continues to get better.

    Snooks @ 3Beeze Homestead

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    1. Thanks Snooks! The beds certainly aren't perfect but since the plants don't know that, it doesn't bother me!

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  5. I love the idea of the 'Homestead' and have pursued it so many times. I am trying to decide where, on our property, to start a good garden, but it seems the wind is the big issue. I think raised beds are great because you can line the bottom with rabbit wire, before you fill them with soil, to keep the rodents out plus you can put a wind barrier around them to protect from the winds of Wyoming.
    Good luck with your endeavor. Your sister, Audrey is my dear friend and neighbor! Love her to bits and pieces!!!

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  6. Audrey (we call her Kathy!) told me you had commented on the post. I love her to bits and pieces also - glad you've become acquainted! I really like the idea of straw bales as wind breaks - it won't shred like plastic will with our hurricane force winds. My garden is fairly well protected from wind but I need to find a way to keep out the deer.

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