I do love this time of year with the trees blooming, tiny leaves emerging, the drab color of the winter mountains changing. The Peach and Asian Pear held enough blooms during the two freezing days and nights that they are full of blossoms, so there will be fruit.
The Gold Finches are turning their bright summer color.
Last evening, I went over to collect eggs and one of the hens who refuses the nesting boxes in the Palace was sitting in the corner where several of them have been laying. I must have gone over just as she settled in to lay her egg, so I waited outside until she was done. It was quite a bit longer than I expected and when she was finished, she squawked past me and out into the yard.
I foolishly thought that nearly two weeks was long enough for them to return to the Palace at close up time, so I turned them loose into the orchard. At first they pecked and scratched around the base of the Palace, then suddenly almost as a unit ran flapping their wings up the field to the area of the pen and coop. They seemed quite distraught that they couldn’t get in the pen, thus into the coop. With some effort, I herded 4 of them back and shut the door. The other four are the more skittish ones that won’t come near me even if I have treats, so I had to rig a trap with a length of old fence and catch them one at a time, carry them back to the Palace and shut them in. Today, they will have to be content with the temporary pen I built in front of the Palace and it may be a week or two more before I try again. I really want them returning to that coop before I begin letting the littles into the other pen.
I mentioned that the littles will eat out of my hand. Still not all of them, but if a couple come over, more push in to see what is going on.
I realized that the closed up coop got too hot yesterday when the temperature rose to near 80 and two of the chicks seemed stressed. I opened the windows to let some air in and closed it back up at nightfall. This morning, though it is going to be somewhat cooler as we return to more seasonal temperatures, I opened windows on both sides. Late this afternoon, it is supposed to begin to rain for a few days, so I will close them again.
For the next few days, we will have to try to work our daily walks in between thunderstorms. It is important to keep moving and try to get my summer stamina back. Most winter’s I walk the hills around the farm to stay in shape, but this winter, I was a slacker and I’m paying for it now.
As soon as the weather stabilizes to warmer days, milder nights, and dry weather, I need to stain the south and east sides of the garage that are sadly in need. If you ever want to build a house, don’t build a log home. Though I love it dearly, the frequency it needs to be stained is a pian and it is expensive to hire the job out. Son 1 has done a good job of staying on top of it, but those two sides of the garage didn’t get done last time, COVID and a dissertation have kept him away.