We had freezing fog on Tuesday morning, which resulted in a serious hoar frost. Oh boy, what a winter wonderland! I’m about done with winter wonderlands…

Foggy and frozen.
Looks like a bottle brush, but it’s all hoar frost!
Peaches are definitely getting their cold hours…
Frozen chicken coop.
Every wire of every fence covered…

This morning we had a brief “blizzard” out of the northwest, which is fun when you’re trying to drag your trash cart north down a very long driveway. Now it’s sunshine and serious wind. I think I’ve learned my lesson about not zigzagging and staking down line over the top of my low tunnel. Not sure if anything is still living/growing under there at this point?

Starting Saturday night we have windchills in the negative teens for the next week. The #PolarVortex is coming for us! I’m sure the sheep, horse, and chickens will love that! Sounds like lots of confinement.

I’ve also been fighting with the horse and ram tank heaters. Tank heaters are the bane of my existence in the winter! K&H makes good submersible heaters for rubber stock tanks, but they don’t last long here as the elements get mineral deposits fast and burn out and trip GFCIs sometimes within weeks of install, or if you’re lucky, after a couple of seasons. Farm Innovators’ C-500 Utility De-Icers work marginally better, but also randomly burn out and stop working, tripping GFCIs as they go.

I have managed to get a Farm Innovator deicer to work again by bringing it inside overnight, scrubbing, etc. I think the thermostat in it got stuck. I’m going to try the same thing with another of the same kind and see if that one gets unstuck, too. Need to have these all sorted before the #PolarVortex gets here or we will just have gigantic fully frozen stock tanks!