During the winter months, I turn off the water supply to the gardens, to prevent the pipes from freezing and bursting. Once the overnight temperatures are safely above freezing, I turn them on again, which I did yesterday.
This year, I didn’t have any burst pipes… but I did have one broken tap to repair, that was probably kicked by a landscaper or deer:
An easy repair:
I could then turn on the water. For the east side, I have a valve box that I installed last year, that lets me individually control the water to the chicken coops, veggie garden & shop, and pond/gazebo areas (plus an underground tap that I used over winter to refill the chicken water):
For the west side, there’s another valve box. The boxes tend to fill with dirt, which is fine as it protects them from freezing, but has to be dug out a bit:
I then added water timers to the various garden beds. Large areas typically have automatic timers like this:
Here’s the repaired tap again, with a manual timer attached. We use these manual timers for lower-priority irrigation areas:
I then started filling the fountain. Here’s the frog that lives in the center of the fountain:
The fountain nearly full. We plan to remove the flower girl statue part of the fountain at some point:
I also scooped leaves out of the small pond at the end of the stream. That took a while; it was pretty much chock full of them. Here, you can see the pump:
Then I turned on the pump, and the stream started circulating. So nice to have that running water again, and I’m sure the cats will enjoy it too:
Finally, I mowed all of the lawns and the field:
A busy day of garden maintenance!
Yesterday I turned on the fountain in our pond, to get some water circulation.
Before I could do that, I had to wade into the pond, as the fountain had fallen over, probably due to the ice. So I recently bought some cheap waders:
I was interested to find a couple of gelatinous blobs attached to the sides of the plastic pot that the pump sits in (to protect the intake from the pond silt). Googling images, I think these are salamander eggs. We know that our pond has salamanders, which we take as a good sign of a healthy pond ecosystem.
Here’s the righted pump; the water is murky from me stirring up the silt, but you can see one of the blobs on the left:
A view of the pond with the fountain running. It’s not a big fountain, just enough to get some water movement and aeration:
Yesterday was predicted to have 2 to 5 inches of snow, but nothing much eventuated during the day:
However, in the evening it picked up a bit:
And continued overnight, culminating in almost 8 inches this morning:
The camera that watches the front of the cat shelter was buried:
Another angle; the front of the cat shelter is in the middle of the photo:
The chickens were not impressed:
And once again the chicken run roof netting didn’t fare too well:
We took Rory out for a walk in the snow; she loved it. Here we’re checking on the beehives; her one chance to get so close to them:
The chicken coop:
View of the pond arbor, brown gazebo, and trees:
Snow on a tree near the white gazebo:
Our new apple trees might be regretting coming here:
Rory really loved scampering in the snow:
The cat shelter again:
Lots of young koi, and three bigger ones, swimming in our pond.
Just some fish swimming and eating, and the sound of the waterfall.