Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Live Free or Die Chicken

Today, the chickens were moved out of their little Rubbermaid pen into the great big world of the coop! So exciting! It is still fully enclosed so they are safe and they have no access to the outside world, nor does the outside world have access to them. They have spent much of the afternoon running and jumping and attacking each other. Much hilarity ensuing!

A friend saw earlier posts and told me that the chicks look "fugly" and yes they are at an unattractive age. It can't be helped. Like I said, their bodies are growing faster than their feathers.  It takes a while for them to look like chickens but once they do, they are will be lovely specimens of chicken.

I started raising chickens a few years back and have lost all three previous batches to raccoons. Evil, little walking bio-hazards.... I am not fans of the nasty little creatures. They are like dirty hoodlum teenager thugs waiting at your trash cans at night looking at you like, "Hey! Give me that bag of garbage or I'll give you ringworms!" Although, I think they are cute, I happily would like them to be anywhere but in my yard, snacking on my birds.

So in order to keep the birds safe, I have enlisted the help of the intrepid boyfriend to build a doofus proof chicken hatch. Me being the doofus, it basically needs to allow for my occasional laziness in latching.

The seeds that I have planted so far are:

  •  "Bright Lights" Swiss Chard
  • "Chocolate Cherry" Tomatoes
  • "Stupice" Tomatoes
  • "Petite Pois" Bush Peas
  • "Sugar Star-Bush" Snap Peas

I had some old "Petite Pois" peas from 2007 laying around so I thought I would see what the germination rate might be on those and, even after 4 years, they still have a germination rate of 80 percent! I must of done something right when I stored them!

I germinated them in between paper towel, like you might have done as a child in elementary school. It's always fun to see seeds begin to grow. I sprouted them and plopped them into a nice fluffy potting medium and now they just need to grow big and strong so that I can plant them in the garden and EAT THEM!! Sweet peas fresh from the garden are a little bit of heaven.

I found a garden cart for free on Craigslist this weekend and although it needs a new wheel, it is in pretty darn good condition. I have a wheel barrow and it is very handy, but a cart with two wheels will be a little more sturdy on some of the heavier loads like big bags of mulch and compost. Score!

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