Sunday, June 21, 2009

On the Brink of Abundance!

It finally feels like summer here at Kay's Leaning Tree Farm. We've had our first 90 degree day, and I've had two sunny pool days. Yahooey!

My six chickens have been enjoying a diet of carrots, clover, corn, strawberries, watermelon rind and grapes. I've been getting three eggs a day since I moved the 4H chickens into the coop annex. Yesterday was my first four-egg-day! That super jumbo egg in front is from my Black Australorpe. She's a keeper! A couple of her eggs have been double-yolkers.

I picked my first black currants this morning. They are kind of bitter and need lots of sugar or honey. I plan to make a syrup to add to smoothies. These babies are full of antioxidants.

The black raspberries are sweet and tasty right off the vine. A couple of handfuls didn't even make it to the house.

My first beans. My first cucumber. The last of the asparagus. My record for first beans is June 14. That was at least ten years ago. I would call this harvest "nice and early."

Look closely. That's a chipmunk waaaaaay up in the cherry tree. He was later chased to the ground by the bossy mama robin.

These lucky baby robins are growing up on a diet rich in cherries! I'm sure mama will be heading for the raspberry vines soon.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Hey, we're famous!

A friend at bowling tonight told me NPR's Morning Edition did a segment on celiac disease this morning! I googled NPR, celiac disease, June 15 and found the transcript right away. Good info! Glad NPR is helping spread the word!

Friday, June 12, 2009

One step forward, two steps back

I've been missing for a while because I've been dealing with chicken health issues. Turns out I bought the first flock from someone who did not take good care of his chickens. I shamed him into taking the whole bunch back and giving me a refund. I'm relieved! It was an 80-mile round trip to return them. Lots of cleaning and sanitizing in my near future!

The second flock of six is doing just fine. They have separate quarters and yard. They are giving me three eggs every day. Except for putting up with waaaaaay too much rain (new record in Indianapolis,) they seem to be pretty happy. As soon as I clean out the chicken yard they will have more room to move around. That should make them even happier.

Here's what I'm harvesting this week:

The campanula and Asian lilies have popped open to decorate the yard.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Which came first?

In this case, the chickens. I brought 14 of them home Sunday afternoon. Breeds include Silver Laced Wyandotte, Aracana, Cochin, Buff Orpington, Rhode Island Red, Barred Rock, Plymouth Rock and one Turken. The turken loves me! The Cochin is HUGE and has feathers on her feet. The Buff Orpingtons are afraid of everything and sleep standing up with their heads under a wing.
My first egg! I'm thrilled about it because moving chickens causes them to stop laying for a few weeks. Maybe it was the bedtime snack of watermelon rind and apple peel. Maybe it's that I sang them a lullaby (Sweet Baby James, because I like the "goodnight moonlight ladies" line) when I tucked them in.

I bet they'll like it here. They came from a large chicken farm. They already love their grassy yard. Conditions were more crowded and less personal at their previous address.