Starving, Skinny Birds!

cardinal on the bird feeder

Yesterday, we went to buy birdseed for our poor starving birds. We should have done it sooner, but we were remiss with the holiday season and all. The past week has been a tough one for the birds. Single digit temperatures are no fun for the birds any more than they are for humans.

So we bought them some seed, a mix of various seeds including black oil sunflower seeds, which the squirrels also love. 40 lbs of seed to split between the birds and squirrels.

We got it home and proceeded to fill the bird feeders. One of them had broken plexiglass on one side, which makes it unusable. I know who broke it. Last fall, we had a young black bear visit the feeders. They were empty then, but it didn’t stop him or her from batting it a few times to find out. So now we have one feeder until I repair the broken one. That one’s a favorite of the squirrels because it’s so easy to get into. They’ll appreciate that.

The first birds to show up, and so far, the only birds are the cardinals and the tufted titmouse, or is that titmice?

Sorry we kept you waiting for so long my bird friends. It won’t happen again.

Greenhouse Progress

Today,  I got the growing beds in the greenhouse adding some borders to better define the beds.  Here’s a look at the changes:


Maya, our cat was checking  out the new heated bathroom we built for her.

Greenhouse News

IMG_0007The greenhouse is done, well, almost.  The structure is mostly done, but no preparations have been done inside for planting.  I put a remote temperature monitor inside that we can read from inside the house.  Today, with and outside temperature of about 40 degrees, the inside of the greenhouse at 12 noon is 70 degrees, closed up.

Next steps are to prepare the beds for planting, build benches, and, if the weather warms up, paint it.

The greenhouse kit came from a small company in the northeast called

Jim Smith


Jim Smith was a pioneer in organic gardening in Western North Carolina. He has been involved in organic gardening and farming since 1978. He was in organic landscaping for 22 years, had an herb growing business, and ran a retail business at WNC Farmers market for 15 years selling organic products and services. He farmed in South Carolina for 7 years, teaching classes, workshops and running the Sustainable Mountain Farming Program for four years. That program was a collaboration with ABTech Community College, and is now called ASAP, a NC Extension Service. Most recently Jim has been a farm/garden consultant.

Jim’s other accomplishments Include, but are not limited to:

◆ Co -founder – The Organic Growers School
◆ Founding Member – Carolina Farm Stewardship Association, at one time serving on the board
◆ Former Board Member – Sustainable Agricultural yearly conference (3 years)
◆ Former Board Member – SARE-PDP ( a four year term that developed training in sustainable agriculture for extension agents in southern US).
◆ Owner – Good Earth Organics, which did business in Costa Rica for 13 years, importing organic ginger and coffee to US

Jim has worked on farming and marketing programs in Bolivia, Chile, Guatemala, Zambia, Africa, and Cuba. He also has extensive experience working with soils, soil building amendments, cover cropping systems, green-housing, and other farm systems approaches. He has maintained a garden for over 40 years.
Click Here for more details on Jim’s consultations.