We were given a winter prediction of warmer than average and average rain (not snow). Things are not as predicted, but I am ok with that. It has been cold and we have had lots of “snow days.” Not block you at home snow, just pretty to watch snow. I awoke this morning to a new coating on the yard, the third morning this week. It stayed at or near freezing all day and snowed off and on all day. The cover would thin or nearly go away as the sun came out, then it would cloud and snow again. When I went to get the mail at the top of the driveway, it was snowing hard and the sun was out. I looked for a snowbow but didn’t see one. As I went out to secure the hens at dusk, it was coming in again.
The lengthening days have all of the hens preparing to start laying eggs again. After buying a dozen at the Farmers Market last weekend, I got 4 from the Olive Eggers this week, 2 dark olive and 2 lighter green, so both of them are laying. Today there was a green one and a brown one (might have been the pinker color, it is too difficult to tell by house light). As I stood by the coop waiting for them to coop up so I could lock their door for the night, I noticed that 8 of the 9 have healthy red combs and wattles again. One is always reluctant to go in at night, she isn’t as healthy looking at the others and she has a very small, pale comb. I fear she may not be well, but she is a chicken, not a pet. If she shows real signs of illness, she will be isolated from the others to prevent spread, but if she is just not thriving, she will live out her life with them until the flock is replaced next fall or winter.
It is about time to sort through the seeds and see what else needs to be purchased as garden planning begins. After letting the chickens have garden time at the end of the season, they kicked most of the good soil out of several of the boxes, so some early spring work will have to be done to get ready, but not while the ground is mostly frozen. I have accumulated a good pile of cardboard to prepare the area that wasn’t planted last year after digging out the mint. That area will give me another 4 by 8 foot bed to use. As I plan to move the compost pile back to the northwest corner, I have started using that area between the fence and the bed planted with the garlic to put kitchen scraps until the garlic is harvested and that box moved. I need to get daughter and grand daughter on board to decide what they want to plant this year as well.
After my post yesterday, the state announced they were opening up Covid vaccines to the federal guidelines and I have pre-registered for mine. Now I await the call that will send me to the designated location to get it.