Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Garlic in, Chicks Out! Happy Solstice!!

On the first day of summer, Gloria harvested our lovely big garlic patch. We now have a huge mound of fragrant stems and bulbs reeking/ glowing/ burning in the shed. (heaven help you if you just need to grab a shovel!) Then she got the soaker hose laid out in a section of the garden proper (the soil that was treated with 2 truckloads of aged manure over the winter); got our four sweet potato plants in (the ones that came from cuttings that perched in a glass of water on the ledge over the kitchen sink for 2 months!)

Chickens in the Coop!
Sunday and Monday June 19-20/ we finally finished buttoning down roof edges, putting closures on roost doors, installing a perch, and digging in the last half of the hardware cloth skirt outside. (We're sore!) Monday night, since the weather was going to dip into the low 50s we just put the 4 big girls inside the roost box (brought out gimp, Scarlet and a buddy--the next smallest, Maude inside). Tuesday night--yes--the first evening of summer--put all 6 of them in it. Oh my!! They had not been 'hardened off,' (i.e. the bathroom brooder box only ever "dipped" into the low 70s), but even tiny Scarlet with the cold feet seemed unfazed. Mind you, they had lots of straw and the old towel from the bottom of the cat carrier--the vehicle they had been riding in coming and going from the house over the last several weeks.

We did go on the Chick Coop Tour, was it two weeks ago now? We visited folks within 2 miles of our place, and were happily surprised and impressed. And jealous! Saw some lovely gardens in addition to the apparently ubiquitous bands of happy chickens. Someone did a very cute bit of companion planting with nasturtiums; I fell in love with them. But realized in many many trips to the home-building box stores that they are out of fashion. Gloria bought me seeds from the spinner at the co-op! Like morning glories, they needed to be soaked overnight--which we did. Tonight I'm going to brave the heat and go on a planting spree! (She got three varieties--one which is a vine, and 2 that vary in terms of flower color and size.)

I know this is an upbeat post, but the weather forecast makes me want to scream and yell and shake my fist at the heavens. We haven't had any rain in four months--North Dakota and Missouri are battling floods. :(


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