|Getting started on the "weather wall" on a very cold day.|
|Opening a "weather wall" window.|
|An entirely new look for the Tea Room|
While the Tucker team was busy on the Tea Room, we did manage to take advantage of a bit of reprieve from the cold weather. This meant getting right back to our pruning.
We tackled our Raspberries, Blackberries and a few small Apple trees. Even Chef lent a hand.
|Pruning Raspberries with Chef|
|Lots of cuttings means lots of mulch|
With a couple of days of positive temperatures, we also decided to take Chef with us to tap some trees. The outlook for sap production still does not look good with another cold front and winter storm expected this week. However, it is getting late in the year and we thought we would try to get whatever sap we could. The temperatures reached 2 degrees C, which meant the wood was not likely to crack when drilled.
|Tapping Maple trees|
As a result, we also decided to try an "old fashioned" concept: spyles with hanging buckets. It is the traditional way of doing things, but of course these days most of these things are made of plastic instead of metal. The spyles themselves look fragile and brittles and could certainly not be hammered into a tree. What is also frustrating is that the standard plastic bucket has no lid. Leaving the sap open to wood chips, dirt and insects. So, although a bit more flexible when it comes to collection, this system also has its drawbacks.
|Installing plastic spyles and bucket.|
Since we expect another cold front coming our way (now for some reason called a "polar vortex"), I leave you this week with two quick photos: one from inside the manor and the other of the farm, as we suffer from the melancholy of "cabin fever".