As we were finishing lunch and tonight’s chili was being prepped, I spotted the hens charging across the yard from their free ranging. Once the chili was in the slow cooker, I went out to see what was going on. A Red Tailed Hawk, smaller than any of the hens was sitting in the Forsythia, 9 hens huddled under the thick foliage. The hawk flew off, the hens were too frightened to follow me back to the secure run and coop. It took lures, long poles to poke around under the shrubs, the hose on full jet being sprayed under to get them out. They were finally herded into security. Have you ever herded chickens, like herding cats, but they are secure again.
While doing that, I realized that the temperature is dropping rapidly and it is raining lightly so I hauled the plastic sheeting, the mylar sheet, and stakes out to the garden. The wind made putting plastic over the surviving plants like wrestling an octopus, very challenging. The fig was closed in, the peppers, except for the two branches I broke off one of the Serranos, the peas, and the ground cherries were all covered.
Again, planning ahead for next year would allow me to make a tunnel over a long 3 or 4 foot wide bed with the wide sheet of plastic. I think I will note this in my gardening journal and put the plants that might still be producing in October in one bed.
That basket filled and the green ones were pickled in a half gallon jar for hubby to enjoy over the winter. There are 3 half gallon jars and 1 quart jar of them in the refrigerator and that won’t get him through the winter until next season.
The sunflower heads that were dried in the garage, need to be contained. I have found two of them on the floor mostly eaten, so there must be a very fat mouse in the garage or able to get in the garage.