Spring in Flower

The first week of March was rainy, but the rain soon went away to give place to hot, canarian sun. Our fertile soil keeps feeding plants all around us, so that I have to now go through flowery, smelly jungle to get to my house. 
The babies of Monarch butterfly that you could see in the February blog are now up and runnin, munching on what’s left from their favorite and only plant.
Having such an abundance of water, sun and nutrients, our favorite green veggies – wild mustard started to flower and we needed to pick them fast and dry. Luckily, Astrid and Mateo – our guests, came just in time to help us out.
We are preparing for the big group of students to come for the on-site iPDC, about which you can read in the February blog.
Stef spends most of her recent time preparing and organising their arrival. You would be surprised how much time we have to spend in front of the computer to have everything properly organized so that the finca runs smoothly and everyone knows where they’re at.
I sometimes get a headache from that, but Stef loves talking to her students and gets really excited about them coming here and feeling empowered about all the possibilities that she creates for them.
One of the things we need to think about concerning big group of people is food. We want to be able to provide as much food from the farm as we can, so we started intensive planting of potatoes!
Here you can see and hear (in spanish) short description of our work.

On the 8th of March me, Sandra and Stef went to Huelga Feminista – Feminist March in Santa Cruz. In this year La Palma, as well as all of Spain reached their record numbers in attendance of women of all age and professions.

It was great to take part in it and apart from getting insired and hopefull about further work to dismantle sexism, we had a lot of fun too!

It wasn’t the end of our feminist endaveours
Two weeks after me and Stef attended the Feminist Breakfast at Casa Amarilla – befriended project in Breña Alta, on the other side of the island, that I visit sometimes to help them out in their gardens. You can see their facebook page to find out more about those great people here


The breakfast was delicious, fruits, juice and conversations very juicy!
Back in the finca Sanda and Jeff were studying the Integral Peraculture Course, doing the classes together.
Sandra spent a lot of time designing the transformation of her room into an independent apartment. She learnt a lot of sketch-up from nothing thanks to Jeff’s expertise.



She also made some advances in the practical part of the job, clearning up the space for the kitchen and shower and re-doing the roof that will be above the compost toilet. 
Jeff, having finished his sketch-up visualization and measurements, and after getting all the materials, finally started building the rocket stove!


Luckily, he had help from outher volunteers (on the picture with Kevin) and guests. It involved moving around heavy bricks and barrels!
The result looks very promising and exciting! We had a first try a week ago and it still needs some improvements, but we’re well on the way!
In the video below you can see Jeff explaining shortly the idea behind this strange looking construction

In this time of the year, when the fields everywhere around are growing like crazy, changing colors from green to yellow, purple and pink, the neighbors trouble their minds with cutting it all down, to protect us all from summer fires.
This time our closest neigbors will not need to use noisy and smelly machines, because our sheep came for help!
Henk, our friend that also borrows us his jeep from time to time, asked me to put the sheep on his field. They were very happy to have new fields full of fresh food and they also got a new friend! Chico is actually a breed of local shepherd dogs and he loves our sheep!
Bonita – the Goar keeps giving us about 1l of milk per week, even though she has never been pregnant!
Encouraged by that phenomenon (and quite hooked on her delicious, soft, fatty milk with the aroma of almonds), we decided to get her pregnant! (we also didn’t have any babies on the farm for quite a while…)
Luckily, our neighbor has a very handsome male goat, who was very happy to see Bonita.
We took her to his house once, so that she gets his smell and second time after 4 days, as this is the time in which she is supposed to go on heat after smelling the maile around.
We will see if we succeeded in the next few months. Fingers crossed!
Our piggies – Ora and Badu were also enjoying the lush grass and sun. We let them out every evening to forage in our forest gardens. They love the almonds, wild veggies and naps in the sun!

Also chickens experienced an improvement in their life conditions.

Sandra, Jeff and Stef spent a lot of time adapting old guinea pigs cages so that they can accommodate our growing population of chickens.
We have also extended their chicken coop, so that their living area has doubled. That of course, where they are not running around the forest gardens in the forage frenzy, which is basically every evening.
Our new chics are loving their new home and are growing really fast!
To rest from the intellectual work in sketch up and often fatigue in the previous month, Jeff took some days off to explore the island. He went to Los Tilos and Charco Azul, which are on the north-east side of the island. 
Charco Azul is a beach, but in the traditional sense of the world. You will not find sand in there, but a lovely natural pool in which you can swim in almost every weather. It is surrounded by volcanic rocks and part of it is tiled, so it is a pleasure to rest in between swimming.
Los Tilos is part of the National Park that coincides of the Laurisilva forest – the anciet rainforest that used to cover much bigger area of the island and is still one of the main sources of water. It is personally my favorite place on the island!
Back at the finca Kevin was working hard all March to re-wire our hostel. He finished in the last week of this month. Now, we have modern and safe plugs and internet by cable in every room, so there is no need for toxic WiFi!
One of the favorite moments of everyone in the farm is friday banquet when we share the food all together. Kevin, apart from being a brilliant electrician, was a great cook! We loved making us healthy desserts and amazing dishes every Friday

And in the evening, everyday, we enjoy our recorded meetings, thanks to which these blogs are possible! Otherwise we would never remember all the great things that we make hapen!