November 25, 2013
Almost two months later and…I am feeling almost normal! I am 16 weeks pregnant. For me, this means:
- eating every 3 hours
- only getting sick about once a day
- taking only one nap most days
- doing school with the kids again
- cleaning the house again
- gardening a little (like 30min/day)
I thought I had planted enough lettuce, spinach, carrots, and kale to last us through the winter. However, because I was sick and so very tired, I had my 7yo go cut the lettuce, without instructing her how to do the ‘cut & come again’ method. She cut all the lettuce down to the nub so it is not growing back.
I planted some lettuce and carrots the other week & covered them to keep in some heat. Because of where we live (NC), the weather fluctuates enough that some things can continue to grow throughout the winter. We have been having 60 degree days on and off so I thought maybe I could grow some more lettuce…but none have germinated. I am planning on starting to set up all of my greenhouses in December so I’m sure I’ll get some more greens then. Until then, I am very happy with all of my fresh, organic carrots! 🙂
We had the chickens in a tunnel system this summer. We moved the tunnel to new grass every month or so & it worked out really well. As soon as fall hit, they were getting out of the tunnels, no matter what we did. We made sure they had plenty of grass but it did not stop them. As we were still trying to figure out how to make the tunnels more secure, the chickens got in the garden and ate ALL of my greens. They left one cabbage and all of the carrots are fine. However, no more lettuce, spinach, kale, or broccoli. I am so sad 😦 Fresh greens are my favorite!
(digging up my new potato patch – no potatoes in there yet so that was okay for the time being) (when they get out of the tunnels & have no way of getting back into the coop to lay…)
We finally decided to keep them in the run for the time being, probably until spring. The Australorps, my best layers, keep flying out of the run but the Orpingtons are staying in. I have no more netting and the fence is 7ft tall already…eventually, I’ll have to figure out how to keep them in for good. I can’t find where they’re laying either (the ones flying out). We are getting about 10 eggs/day right now from out 19 chickens. Is that good b/c we have only 11hrs of daylight or a bad number of eggs for that many chickens?
Our last chicken news is that we finally had to get rid of our rooster. He was great until the chickens started laying. Then he got VERY protective. When the chickens were in the tunnel, I just told the kids to make sure the rooster was out of the coop when they checked for eggs. However, because there was a stretch when they were getting out of the tunnel & free ranging, he started attacking the kids.
I showed my oldest (7yo) how to keep him away but he eventually kept attacking, no matter what. She was screaming one day as she was waving a stick at him, keeping him from attacking her, but he was not letting up. I came outside & grabbed a metal garden rake & swung it back & forth at him. He continued to come at us. I swiped him a few times in the neck and he never backed down. Finally, I hit him hard enough that some feathers flew & he backed down. I decided that was it. We had a friend take him & she made stew out of him. I am sad we do not have a rooster anymore because I really wanted to be able to have chicks one day. 😦
(Rooster – he would only NOT attack my husband) (Rooster after we had had enough!)
How are your gardens growing? Check out Daphne’s Dandelions to see what everyone is up to with their Fall & Winter gardens.