Yep, it’s still raining. Boy, is this getting old! It did kind of quit on Sunday so I went out and dug the last of our potatoes. I had to dry them on the enclosed back porch, because they were muddy. That’s not what you want for long-term storage at all. David’s girlfriend, Ashley, loves carrots and went into the main garden Saturday morning and pulled a six-gallon bucket full. Yes, they were muddy too, but boy oh boy, were they huge! The row she started on was the Kurodas, which are our preferred big, sweet carrots. I use like to use them with roasts and in chunky stews. Some weighed more than a pound and were the size of a fist! Now that’s a carrot. And they are still so tender they split open with a pop while she was cutting them up to can. (If you want to find out more about growing carrots in your garden, check out my article, How to grow great carrots in issue #153 of BHM or in the Twenty-Sixth Year Anthology.)
It wasn’t raining much Sunday, so we went over to the new cabin and started in on the roof. David still had some fly rafter supports to add, plus the fly rafters themselves. On Saturday, he built another temporary scaffold across the north end of the cabin’s second floor to make working overhead easier and safer. On Sunday afternoon, he was ready to put up the first fly rafters so Will stopped what he was doing at home and went over to help. The fly rafters are 2x6s, 16 feet long so it’s definitely a two man job, holding them in place two feet out from the roof’s rafters and screwing them down. (Remember, that roof is something like 24 feet above the ground. Yes, they were very careful and took safety precautions.)
They did run into a little glitch as five of the rafters which had previously been set, had spread a little, throwing off the tail ends. They discovered this while attaching the sub-facia. But with some careful thought, they figured out how to correct the problem so on went the work. Soon it was time to start slapping on OSB roof sheeting. As the sheets were shoved up through the rafters, David nailed them down. He was also careful to keep toe boards screwed across both the rafters and OSB to have something to grip and keep him from sliding down the OSB as he worked. Yes, he has a safety harness.
Unfortunately, it gets dark real early now. I made supper and waited, figuring when it got dark they’d quit and come to eat. No guys… I called over and no answer on the cell phones. I was getting worried. Ashley had to make a trip to town so she let me know they were still working (and alive!), using flashlights! By 8:30, they finally came in. Whew. They had put about 1/3 of the roof sheeting on and also had covered that with Rex Wrap, a plastic membrane which would protect the OSB from the rain which was coming. We were all happy with the amount of work that got done on the new cabin, despite the crappy weather. David was also just getting over a nasty fall cold to boot.
I’m still seeding tomatoes and peppers. I’ve moved on to the hot peppers as it looks like we’re going to be letting the hot pepper hoop house freeze since night time temperatures are forecast to be in the twenties for several nights soon. I am going to dig up a couple of the most rare varieties and bring them into the house for winter, hoping they’ll mature peppers for seed. Two of the ones I’m seeding now are really cool peppers. One is a firecracker hot pepper a friend sent us from Thailand . It is directly from Thailand and used in native stews and other recipes. It is the hottest pepper I’ve ever eaten. Probably not as hot as some, like Trinidad Scorpion but hot enough for me! Will took a lick and that was enough for him. As it came to us unnamed, we call it Thai Baby Dragon. These one-inch long fiery red, upright peppers glow with heat! Another is much tamer by comparison. It is Sugar Rush Peach I got from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds. This pepper is a hugely productive and beautiful peachy yellow/pink, elongated like your finger with a tail like Trinidad Scorpion. It’s flavor is exotic and fruity at first, then you get hit with just a medium heat which quickly goes away. I love them! I added several to a big batch of pepper relish and it turned out really nice.
Well, gotta run. Ashley is working in the Cities this week so yesterday she got another bucket of carrots pulled, washed, and cut up for me to can today. Wow, are those carrots beautiful! — Jackie