Weekend Work

 

We received the new chicken coop. It’s another 10×10 dog kennel…OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Anna Nicole oversaw the construction carefully, and squawked orders at regular intervals…

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Meanwhile, the neighborhood stray, who we call Rico, relaxed in the grass. He likes to be nearby when we are in the garden, but is scared to come too close. I’ve managed to pet him 3-4 times in the last six months.

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Stretching the chain link was the hardest part. But having done it before, we got it done easier this go-round…

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The babies are getting pretty big, and I don’t want to confuse them with any of the laying hens when its time to harvest.

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In other news. Did I ever show a picture of my new front porch swing? When my father-in-law and nephews were visiting in mid-July, they kindly put this together. I still need to paint it, though…

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After we had completed putting the chicken coop together, we turned our focus to other projects. Dave filled all of the holes I had dug the Yukon Gold potatoes out of with a mix of cut grass and chicken poo out of the old coop.

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The floor of the old coop was filled with about three solid inches of packed grass cuttings, chicken poo, and when we dug it out…maggots. Boy oh boy, did it stink!

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Not to completely gross out everyone, but the chickens were happy to clean up the maggots. Remember, chickens areĀ omnivores!

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We had purchased a roof add-on with the new coop and decided to see how it looked. We will run chicken wire all along the top, sealing it off from marauding raccoons and opossum, and then lay the tarp over it…

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Meanwhile, I picked up (and planted) two large plants from Home Depot. A lavender plant…

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And a Black-Eyed Susan…

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I plan on filling our front yard with a large variety of perennial flowers. After that, I got to work spreading straw over the old potato bed…

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Hey look, a little pumpkin is growing here!…

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Next to the now well-established culinary herb bed, I laid down several layers. First, a layer of grass/chicken poo from the coop…

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Then a layer of dirt (which I neglected to take a picture of). And finally, a layer of straw. By spring, the nitrogen-rich chicken poo will have broken down enough to provide a rich layer of soil beneath the straw. I will probably take a handful of soil and place it directly on the straw and then plant the seeds in it…

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And then I just went to town with the straw. We filled the walkways between the beds…

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And piled it up around the tomatoes…

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Next spring, we will plant where the walkways were this year and keep alternating the growing strips. Meanwhile, I’m happy with how it looks. Most of the weeds and grass are now gone, and it is far easier to locate and pick the produce now. I’ve definitely got to get more straw for next year. It’s easy to spread, smothers the weeds, provides a growing medium, and more!…

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