It's 96 today and hot! Summer is here finally, but going to drop 20 degrees tomorrow which will be nice. When we lost two of our hens last year I decided to buy some chicks this spring. I've learned the hard way not to buy them too early in the spring or they have to be inside a long time until they feather out and can tolerate outside temperatures. I called the local Hatchery and during the Covid-19 craziness everyone was sold out. Panic buying I think. I like to buy mine directly from a hatchery because they have a good variety, their chicks are healthy, and you know what you're buying. I've had trouble at two different local feed stores getting the wrong breed and one wasn't even a chicken! The good news was the hatchery was able to take an order a month out from me. So basically ordered three chicks mid late April for late May. I took a little vacation time on Wednesday, went out and picked up the chicks. These are pullets which mean they are baby hens. One is a brown leghorn (no name yet), one is a Silver Laced Wyandotte which I have named Luna, the other is a Red Sex Link Debbie. They LOVE the mirror in the basket! All happy and healthy under their red heat lamp-
Luna in the middle named for her silver color to come, brown leghorn on the right. Debbie on the left named for the space-faring chicken in the new Lost In Space-
Lucky Debbie with Don West (actor Ignacio Serricchio), resident hunk!
I'll start getting them outside soon, depending on the weather and then integrate them to the flock slowly. Happy to have more girls to add! More eggs on the horizon, will probably start selling some eventually. My post here shows the photos of adult hens colors, New Chicks Coming!
After a really bizarre April and May we finally got all of the summer veggies planted that we had on Memorial Day. We didn't have enough tomato cages so I asked Dave to rip some old cedar boards to create tepees for the tomatoes. He did that and it worked out great!
Dave used our thrifted mini table saw, works great!
I bought some new rabbit fencing to put around the base of the tomatoes and peppers. This works as a cage for the tomatoes and keeps the chickens out. It's easy to manipulate, cut, and stores well. I realized ours was about seven or eight years old and was just a mess. So for two rolls for $25 it was a good solution-
After my fail X 2 with seeds in the cold frame I added purple and green cabbages and Kohlrabi's-
Mr bushytail chilling in the heat!
I'm thrilled my French Lavender topiary survived the winter, under four layers of row cover. It's now covered with flowers, just starting to open!!!
Speaking of summer, we had our first barbecue in a few years! I kept forgetting to bring it out (in garage), but we had yummy burgers, grilled green onions, chips and lots of veggies!
And speaking of more summer, I put out some sunny yellow decor in the kitchen/dining room-
Since we still have some cedar lumber left after the veggie stakes were cut, I asked Dave to build another flower box for me. He asked how big and off he went-
I made two batches of fermented foods, one with my new Masontops kit. The first batch I used their sauerkraut recipe and my existing jar with airlock top. The second batch I made was fermented carrots with fresh thin sliced ginger and garlic. I was really excited to make two batches simultaneously! Mid way the kraut had a little bit of stuff on the top, but not much, so I skimmed it off. I also added a little bit more brine. I think the issue was some of the tiny pieces of cabbage floated up above the weights. Next time I will leave in a large cabbage leaf under the weights. Never had this problem with the Curtido, I think there was more mass. When it was done there was what looked like a Scoby on top, similar to what you see on top of Kombucha. It had no odor so I threw it out. I checked on the sauerkraut which tasted fine! Since I'm really only making it for myself I'm not worried about any kind of problems. I ate some and it was nice and crunchy! The carrots came out well, with a little tiny bit of scum on the top of the brine which I skimmed off. I tasted the carrots and they were crunchy and slightly spicy. The fresh raw ginger and fresh raw garlic definitely gives it some kick! I will definitely do those recipes again.
Carrots going in
top on, worked great venting!
Chilling in the fridge, the brine will get clearer in a few days