Thursday, March 29, 2012

Time to deport the chickens

So I'm planning a trip down state to see family and friends. It's hard to have someone chicken sit while the chickens are still in my house. Add to the fact that the chickens are out growing there current home. I need to move the chickens out. But the huge issue is that we have a cold front that has taken hold and wont let go of the area. Not cold enough to hurt the chicken but cold enough to keep my in-laws off the island (the end home for the chickens). So i'm stuck I need to retro fit my old coop to hold the additional chickens and insulate it (it's not suppose to get cold enough to hurt the chickens but I don't want to risk it, no one can predict Mi weather).

I also have to wash out all the outdoor feeders and waters to the chickens will have plenty of food and water. The in-laws are more than willing to stop by and care for the chickens. But, when last year my sister-in-law kept check the turkeys for eggs because she beleived that they were chickens (lets not even bring the ducks into this) I think I have reason for pause.

Oh well work, work, work I have to love it or else I wouldn't be a farmer right!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

So ADD strikes again!

So all of Michigan got struck with a HUGE warm spell with temps 45 degrees about average and 30 degrees about the record (God bless Global Warming). Even though I knew our cold weather would spring back I couldn't resist (it didn't help that TSC had all trees and plants on sale) I bought and planted 3 blueberry bushes and an apple tree. I do have 2 raspberry bushes and some rhubarb that I bought but didn't plant (the only reason they didn't go in was because my kids hit there limit with gardening and than I had to work). The apple tree should do just fine it didn't have any buds yet, but the blue berry bushes did have leaves and they lost all of them. It should be fine I really supped up the ground I planted the berries in so they might just make it (more on that too later)

I did however get an ego boost while working outside. We had HUGE Earthworms everywhere! No matter where I dug I was turning up some of the biggest earthworms I have ever seen. When I first moved to this place the lot was in very sad shape I couldn't even grow weeds! But now 7 years of working to improve the soil (truly only 2 years of active work to improve the soil) I have earthworms an awesome sign that the dirt is healthy and improving every year.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

It's time to go chicken!!

For everyone that doesn't know Tractor Supply Company is now running there huge chicken sale. Every store across the country has in-stock over 1000 chickens (and some ducks) ready to go home each week. Now I know the rest of the country is in the start of spring weather but the day before TSC started selling there chickens we got 20 inches of snow over night. Not very conducive weather for young chicks! BUT...

This does open an opportunity for well planned farms to save a truck load of MONEY. Now most farmers (and want a be farmers) look at the weather outside and say "Hmm I will give it a few weeks so the snow will be gone by the time the chicks loss there down." So many of the chicks go un-purchased for while the next shipment comes in. So in the finest business practice they put the week old chicks ON SALE!

Now there are two benefits here. First chicks that were going for $3 are now going for $0.50 (that's about 80% off) and for anyone that has raised chicks before you know that the first week is the hardest to keep chicks alive. So TSC has done all the hard work for you. Not only are you getting cheap chicks but your also getting hardy chicks at a great price.

Now I have complained (and no dought will continue) about living where I do because it's hard to be a farmer up here but there are some benefits if you know where to look.