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We have red-breasted grosbeaks here at Oakdale Farm! They are pretty, they are mean. They are the culprits that answer the question: What is happening to all my gourd wren houses? No, it wasn't wind. No, the gourds weren't rotting. These grosbeaks have big heavy beaks like parrots. They saw/gnaw off the gourds like saws cut them, then they kill and eat the little wrens inside. They also like to eat my cherries and fruit! Next year, as we say, something must change.
The spring wheat I planted in March is now ready to cut and sheaf so it can be taken to the shop building to dry - in protection from the hens. They have found it and love the wheat! I have some of the new little wheat berries in my hand. They are still in the 'dough' stage, so are not yet ready for breadmaking. But they soon will be and the bread we will make this winter is wonderful. I use about 1/4 cup of wheat berries ground in a coffee mill per loaf with the regular white flour. Grind it immediately before adding to the flour. Extra special flavor that way!
The apricots are ripening, so it is time to put the electric fence around the bottom of the tree to keep the racoons from getting the fruit before I do. They will strip the tree bare all in one night if I don't do this. Ask how I know.... The Early Transparent spring apples are just about ready for pie! They make the very best of all apple pies. And finally, especially for Chad, here is the total rose production from Joyce's rose garden so far. I think we have to call this a 'building' year and hold out hope for a better rose garden next year. Fall roses can be very nice though, so we'll see.