Thursday, July 7, 2016

Living Like Pilgrims

The fox got two more chickens yesterday, one of which was a tiny rooster chick the mamma hatched, and the other was one of the white hens.  Sigh.  

After seeing the remaining chickens on their perch last night, and realizing how little space they take up now, after seven have been taken by the fox, I decided to leave them cooped up during the day today.  They don't like it, especially the guineas, who are very vocal about their imprisonment.  

I was hoping that we would have enough new recruits hatching to replace those lost to predators, but with only two new hen chicks, I'm considering hatching some eggs in the incubator to make up for so many losses.  If we can't catch the fox, we may have to figure out a way to fence him out of an area that the chickens can use.  

If I fence the chickens, I could un-fence the garden, which would make it easier to mow.  Look - kale. Yay...

The buckwheat started flowering when it was less than a foot tall, but it didn't stop growing.  It's several feet tall now, and covered in little white flowers which the bees enjoy.  The pumpkins are growing like gang busters, and the sunflowers and corn are starting to look like real plants.  I dug up an onion recently and was surprised to find a giant potato while I was digging.  Considering the onion was growing next to the potato plant, you wouldn't think I would be so surprised!  

When I gave my nephew a tour of the garden recently, he asked "are you trying to live like pilgrims or something?"  Ha!  His mom had to explain to him what our clothes line was, and he seemed more baffled by our lack of clothes dryer than the presence of our outhouse.  He gets just as excited as I do to collect the eggs though, so I think he has a little pilgrim in him too.  

Can you see the apple on the little apple tree?  With three cherries on the little cherry tree, and an apple on the apple tree, can I say we planted an orchard yet?  

The big apple tree that was here before us has loads of tiny apples this year.  More than I've ever seen before.  

They're so small though.  I keep thinking that the pilgrims would make cider of these tiny apples, right?  Mmm.... cider....

Brandon's brother borrowed our big trailer to haul some dirt, and while he had it he fixed the tire and built these cool wooden walls, which are removable. Isn't it pretty?  

The sky is pretty.  

And the elderberries, which are as big as platters on the shrub near the chicken coop.  I think elderberries like having chickens fertilizing their roots.  

Thanks to the fresh fleas that Wendigo brought with her, Puck got a much needed bath the other day.  I don't like to make him wet in the winter since he has bad hip joints, but he seemed quite content to stand while I hosed him down and soaped him up in this hot weather.  Without a swimming pool, I'm glad for any excuse to use the hose.  

We were gifted some large fence panels by some friends, and used them to create a kennel attached to the corn crib and chicken coop.  Wendigo has her own room! 

We want her to learn to live with chickens, and hopefully defend the chickens, but maybe she spends too much time with them.  Does she think she's a chicken?

Newt is disgusted by the very presence of the puppy.  

But the rest of us think she's great!  

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