Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Where's the Eggs??

The chickens have started making laying noises in the morning, but every time we check the coop... there's nothing in there.  I think it's the start of another farmhouse mystery...

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Animal Updates

My, my, how time flies!  It seems like it was only yesterday when I brought home a cute bunch of chicks, and now I have a flock of full grown birds!  Hopefully, the hens will start laying soon (and not wait until next spring!).

Our black australorp has turned into an especially handsome rooster too!

You can't really tell from the pictures, but he's got these big gorgeous eyes and a greenish sheen to his feathers.  He's also absolutely fearless, yet still very gentle.  Seriously, the best rooster ever (and, I normally HATE roosters, so that's a big complement coming from me!).  I'd heard australorps had one of the best temperaments as a breed, and I completely concur.  

Bacon has also gotten a lot bigger.  He's recently discovered the fun of rooting under the big fir tree in his yard, and it's a little tough to keep him clean, but all-in-all he's a pretty happy little piggie.  One thing I'm worried about, with fall and winter fast approaching, is how we're going to keep him warm.  I've learned not to use straw as his bedding because it gives him rashes on his legs and stomach (and then he as to get antibiotics!), so not sure what to use over winter to insulate him in there.

Jacqueline has had her share of problems too.  She's come down with a pretty bad case of angel wing (which is where the wing twists out instead of being held against the bird's body).  We've tried to correct it, but she (or sometimes Bacon) always manages to get the bandages/tape off!  Now, we're starting to worry the wing might be permanently twisted.  Well, we'll definitely keep trying to find a solution though.

So, that's it.  A little update on our spring babies.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

See the Summer Haul!

Well, it's been a while since I updated, and I thought I might as well start with something that I haven't really posted much about... plants!

Yes, we have those too!

We actually have a few raised beds as well, but those were seeded with lettuces and herbs like cilantro.  Since it's pretty late in the summer, they've mostly sprouted beyond the edible stage.

As for the rest of the family farm, the weather has been really strange this season, so we've had some plants that grew and others that failed completely.

Our three bumper crops this year have been zucchini, cucumbers, and yellow Asian melons (sometimes called honey yellow melons).  We've had so many, we've had to give them away in boxes, and the zucchini have been growing to giant proportions!

The melons, on the other hand, were fruiting well but not ripening because it just hasn't been hot enough.  In fact, we thought they might not ripen at all before fall hit.

But, the last week has turned sweltering and steamy, which means...

That's right!  Baskets of these delicious yellow goodies.  For those of you who have never tried these, they're sort of a cross between cucumbers and a really crisp honeydew.  

The sudden heat has been good for the chilies too, I think, since where there were none, there are suddenly bunches!

The one plant that hasn't been doing well are my blueberries.  I planted two types:  First, a highbush blueberry (who's name I don't recall).

This one has been doing okay, though I wish it would do better.  I'm a little afraid of what winter will do to it.

And, second, a Chippewa blueberry bush, which has been doing rather poorly.

I feel like this one won't survive the winter, though I'll do my best to keep it alive!  

Speaking of winter, can you believe it's right around the corner, which brings up another dilemma... where, oh where, will we get enough hay to keep all the plants and animals warm??