Saturday, August 24, 2013

Two Great People Share One Special Day

It is August 24th once again.  On this day, I remember my Dear Father, John Anthony Volpe--also known as Giovanni Antonio Volpe...who died in my Mother's arms on this day.  A couple of years later, our son, IAN (!) decided it was time to appear on Earth...on August 24th.  Today we are celebrating his 14th revolution around the sun, and thanking his Grandfather for the grand opportunities in LIFE that we enjoy...which His work and His WISDOM helped to pave the way for!  Bless Us All, Everyone!

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Aimee Gunsell
Mountain Ranch Organically Grown

Happy B-day!

Here is one of our magnificent certified organic chickens-- just like those we delivered to Chez Panisse today for their forty- second birthday this weekend!


Friday, August 23, 2013

Not too welcome a guest.

Look who likes our certified organic chicken feed as much as our birds!


Sunday, August 18, 2013

Beans and peppers all up!

This photo was taken a couple of weeks ago.  Around the second week of Aug.


Friday, July 19, 2013

Violet Flame Dahlia


Well, NOW I've seen everything, as far as voluntary appearances in my flower garden are concerned...Just look at this dazzlingly unexpected visitor to my dahlia patch, which has been established for several years...
I've never seen one THIS color there before--only reds and yellows...a little bird must have told it where to find paradise...

Blackberry Lily

...Blackberry Lily...Oh!....Blackberry Lily...You are the IRIS of my eye...

...and the BEES love you too.


Thursday, July 4, 2013


We have certainly been keeping ourselves BUSY around here, and getting everything in the spite of this HEAT!  The rest of our tomato plants,
which are of mixed canning varieties, ALL of the pepper plants, which are particularly nice this year, the wonderful, wonderful goldberries and a very small
planting of mixed winter squash remained, and are now happily sucking up our fabulous Sierra Foothill well water, which is so very fine.

You can also see us seeding out some hefty rows of mixed dried beans, which we have a very high fondness for...and a PASSION for growing.

...and do not worry--we did not make Norm do all the work.



Aimee Gunsell
Mountain Ranch Organically Grown

Friday, June 21, 2013

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Saturday, June 15, 2013


DSC01505's the tomato flock of 2013...!  They are all, or rather, almost all, safely and happily in the ground. 

Aimee Gunsell
Mountain Ranch Organically Grown

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Back to the garden!

We have renewed our inspiration for gardening this year.  More posts to come.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Sighting of strange visitor.

   This is a small group of local wild turkeys that payed our domestic flock a visit this fall and look at the interesting bird with them!  I wish the photo was better but I had to zoom in as they were quite leery of me.  The one with the white and brown markings has given us quite a bit to speculate about, especially since he looks like he should be one of ours.  We think he may be the result of a cross between our Bourbon Red hen and our Midget White tom.  That would explain his markings-- but how did he get mixed up with this bunch?  The only explanation that we can come up with is that he was hatched from one of our heritage mothers, who was, of course, free to roam with her babies.  They must have had a close encounter with a true wild mother, who was foraging in the fields and forests with her brood.  If the young ones were all about the same age, we can imagine how he could have gotten mixed up in whatever commotion may have ensued, and ended up with a new family.

 When we started our heritage turkey project three years ago, with the intent of letting them be as free and as close to wild as possible, we were wondering if we would even end up losing them to the wild flocks.  Not really wanting this to happen, we were still intrigued by the possibility.

Newly hatched baby turkeys are so cute!  That makes it easier to give them the enormous amount of human attention that they require when they have no mother.

As our young orphans grew they continued to look to us for security.  Almost becoming a nuisance at times!   They  would even try to follow us as we drove up the driveway in our car!  We really have a lot more to share with you about our experiences raising these remarkable birds, but all that shall have to come at a later date, as we are now hearing the wild call of our young vegetable seedlings germinating, and in need of our attention...more about that too...

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

What a storm!

The county plowed the road to town but it's still solid ice!

Magnificent morning!

What a sight to wake up to!  Looks like we won't be loading birds to go to the processor tonight.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Monday, February 4, 2013

Wild cross.

Here is one of our young turkeys fathered by one of the local wild tom turkeys!
Norman Gunsell
Mountain Ranch Organically Grown