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autumn


September 13, 2012
September and New Beginnings

 

September always feels like a new beginning; perhaps because of the beginning of school. Eben and Hannah were thrilled to start school and do something different for a change. All that farming is hard work! As far as they are concerned going to school is a lot less work than making hay.

However when you're a farming September feels in no way like a begining. It feels frantic and rushed and crazy!!! Everything is ready to harvest and it's looking at you like it's your fault it's not in a bottle or a bag in the freezer. The fruit flies are anxious to make the most of whatever you're trying to save but haven't quite got around to yet. The squashes are lying in the garden calling for help to get up to teh attic. My garlic called and I almost missed it but here it is:

 

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Hanging up in the cowshed drying. This year I harvested over a 1000 bulbs! (Where am I going to store it? I know - I'll plant it ). Just when I despaired of ever eating homegrown garlic again here it is.

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It gives me such a feeling of accomplishment to go out to the shed and look at it hanging there. And it tastes divine.

The pullets, known as the white ladies here on the farm, have just stared laying. So far the eggs are tiny but they're timing couldn't be better; the older hens are almost done before their molt. Although we keep our hens until they go to the great pasture in the sky they do need to go through a molt periodically and take a rest for a while. They'll probably start laying again in March but they'll never lay as much as they did their first season.

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Did I tell you that they refuse to stay in their home and every night Hannah has to catch them out of the tree they like to roost in and put them back in their house. Soon we'll move them to the bigger chicken house with the older birds but in the meantime they have their own condo. They already know one another from bumping into each other as they scratch in the yard.

Danny is still making hay, second cut mostly. With the dry summer we had the grass grew back really slowly after the first cut. And the cows kept getting out of their pastures. Thank heavens for our wonderful neighbours who let us know everytime they found one grazing in their yard and never complained. Eben and Hannah developed eagle eyes for spotting which cows were on the wrong side of the fence.

 In a few weeks the kids and I will be heading to the 4H Provincial Show. Both of them are going on in several categories and I am so proud of both of them. Maybe by then I'll be able to get my new camera to speak to the computer; it takes fabulous pictures.

Until then we'll all be busy like the bees preparing for winter. Be kind to each other

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Kerry

Sep-13 10:50pm

Fun to read as usual. Sooooo...if I understand this right, the young white ladies have started producing their first eggs, while the old ladies have finished and are going through a molt and a rest. Will they ever lay again? Or do they just become old maids puttering around the farm? And at some point all your chickens are too old/not suitable/don't want them to be for the soup pot? Do you have soup pot chickens? Too many questions?? :=)

Sandie

Sep-15 9:50am

The 'older ladies will start laying again in March but will not lay as many as they did in their first egg laying season. I think a hen produces about 180-200 eggs her first year and then never produces that well again. But we're softies so we let them stay on and are grateful for the eggs they lay. If we were serious about making money from eggs we would not have that luxury. <br /> It takes 6 months from chick to hen to get an egg but only 8-10 weeks to get a chicken for your roaster.<br /> We never eat the old ladies; they die from attrition. It's just too much work...




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