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If you live in a northern climate, one of the most challenging parts of raising poultry is keeping their water from freezing in the winter.
Here in New England, we have weeks on end where we might not get above freezing, and can often dip below 0. Chickens & ducks need fresh, liquid water every day to stay healthy. Ducks especially need water to digest their food properly and to keep their sinuses clear.
If you have electricity in your coop & run this job will get much easier! We don’t have permanent electric lines run to our coop, but it’s close enough to our house that we can run a really long extension cord out there. We had an outdoor outlet installed in the corner of our house closest to the coop just for this purpose.
Choosing to live our lives as homesteaders forced us to learn some new skills. It was one thing to read how to care for chickens, but until you actually are holding that little life in your hands, none of it is REAL to you. Until it comes time to butcher and process an animal, you just don’t realize what all goes into the process.
Homesteading has a way of teaching us some lessons that we never thought about. And they are good lessons. Deep, down into our hearts, personal lessons, that will carry us through this journey and make us the best homesteaders we could be.
Heritage livestock are breeds of livestock that were selectively bred for many uses and climates. These livestock breeds are well rounded and more sustainable than modern livestock breeds.
What are heritage livestock breeds?
Heritage livestock breeds were developed long before the animal breeding technology that we have today was developed. These breeds were developed using selective breeding and natural mating. In other words, if you knew that your cow produced a large amount of milk and your neighbor’s bull had offspring that produced lots of butterfat in their milk, then you could breed the two to hopefully create a cow that would produce a lot of milk with a high butterfat content.
Read more to find out why you should consider raising heritage livestock breeds.
The start of a new year is always a popular time for setting goals and intentions, but really there never is a bad time for divining purpose and plotting your course!
Having a concrete plan is the best way to accomplish large tasks – and not many tasks are larger than “homesteading”. One overarching lifestyle goal, but a million ways to live it.
Livestock, gardening, clean eating, self sufficiency…so many skills to work on. There are as many homesteading paths as there are homesteaders. We all have our own set of personal goals and dreams for what homesteading looks like to us.
Get your homestead in order by setting some goals for this year!
I’ve had a lot of readers express that they think that steam canning is next level, harder, 2.0, or otherwise more difficult than traditional water bath canning and that simply isn’t so. I’m here to tell you that canning is a piece of cake in a steam canner and in many ways, much easier than traditional water bath canning. Here are my best steam canning resources to save you tons of time canning. Read on for steam canning blog posts, a steam canning ebook, YouTube videos about steam canning, my Steam Canning Workshop, and more.
The Steam Canning for Beginners ebook will explain many of the considerations you’ll encounter, such as: how to maximize the steam canner’s efficiency, how to choose recipes that make the most of your steam canner, how to know you’re doing it right, what to do if your processing time is over 45 minutes, who steam canners are best for (almost everyone!), and more.
Simple syrup is a common ingredient in drink recipes, whether you’re making cocktails or iced coffee. Here are go-toEasy Syrup Recipes for Beginners that will keep refrigerated for a month.
Steam Canning Strawberry Syrup
Strawberry syrup is, of course, great on breakfast foods but it is very versatile in the beverage realm.
Strawberry syrup is, of course, great on breakfast foods but it is very versatile in the beverage realm and after I read the suggestion for strawberry margaritas in “The All New Ball Book of Canning & Preserving” and I felt silly for not using the syrup that my kids love on Saturday morning in one of my favorite grown-up drinks.
This Strawberry bread is so moist and so delicious and once you add on the glaze, it literally melts in your mouth! This bread makes the perfect dessert, breakfast or as a snack with a cup of coffee!
My bread almost falls apart as you can see but we do not care. If you prefer bread that does not “fall apart” just do not put as many strawberries. We have eaten this bread hot out of the oven and cold after it has been in the refrigerator several hours, it tastes equally good either way!
Are you planting tomato seed this year? Have you decided which tomato varieties you will be growing? There are so many varieties, I think that choosing which ones to grow is the hardest part of planting tomato seed!
When you are deciding which tomatoes to grow, think about how you will use them. I like to make a lot of tomato sauce to can up and keep in the pantry. But I don’t like to do it at harvest time, so I freeze them until then. I also love to eat them fresh. And I love to try new varieties as well as stick with the old that have worked well for me or taste the best.
Here are tips and tricks for planting tomato seed indoors in winter, for a bountiful harvest next summer!
If you don’t grow your own food or you are just getting started, you might be wondering how to make it through the next eight or nine months as frugally as possible.
Due to not growing our own fruits and veggies the last two summers and only raising our hens for eggs, our pantry is a bit…well empty. We still have a few weeks before we’ll be starting seeds for our garden and many months before our pantry will be full again.
So I had to come up with a plan of what I can do to get our pantry stocked up at least a little bit.
Every homestead needs a great herb garden! The good news is many herbs are easy to grow and can even happily grow in containers for the space challenged homesteader.
The hardest part is deciding which herbs to grow!
The first thing you need to determine is your growing zone to make sure your new herbs are suitable for your climate.
Next, you need to decide which kinds of herbs you want to grow. Culinary herbs? Medicinal herbs? Herbal Tea Garden? Cosmetic or therapeutic herbs? Or do you just want to add some beauty and interest to your garden for yourself & attract pollinators?