Veg Patch

To read the story of my Veg Patch in chronological order use the links in the Blog Archive

Saturday, 24 March 2012

How do you outsmart a chicken?

I sometimes wonder about my new life. I held down a pretty responsible full time job for 30 years making some fairly important decisions on occasion and now I spend my days trying to work out how to beat my chickens at their own game! 

They are devious, there is no two ways about it. After they lost the right to roam at will in the garden, they have done everything in there power to P*!s me off. Escape attempts from the run have been thick and fast, so far today Margot has escaped 5 times and Geri not far behind on 4. Bab's seems perfectly happy in the run, but I expect her to start at any minute.

I don't see what the problem is, they have a wonderful life. A very comfortable hen house, a large run attached and another large run on the lawn. It doesn't seem to be enough. I think the taste of freedom they have previously had,  has made them lust for it more and any chance they get, they are off!!

Well its round one to me.. Good old ebay, a large chicken run with a covered top is in a delivery van somewhere making its way to may little piece of England, and they won't be able to get out of that! 

So they are also trashing their run every time they are in it for more than five minutes. I spent ages getting it nice. They have lots of nice hardwood chips to walk on but all they want to do is dig them up. We have wasted so much food and grit because they keep filling the feeders up with muck!

The chips they kick up all the time have been falling through the wire and making a mess all around the run and I have been spending ages sweeping them up each day so something needed to be done to stop this happening. 

Thanks goodness for pallets. We had a stash left over from the landscaping, so I had to come up with plan. I decided to make the sides of the base higher to stop the bits coming out. So I borrowed Jim's Jigsaw and drill and off I went. 

It took me 4 hours in the sunshine but that was Round 2 to me as well. They spent an hour kicking up bits and none came out! Roll on the third round whatever that may be but as I am well ahead of them, they are going to have to come up with something good to beat me!

On to the vegetables. Things are finally beginning to grow in the raised beds. By things I mean Shallots. I planted them about 10 days ago and yesterday I noticed that green shoots have appeared. 

So at least if nothing else grows, we will have some nice shallots to fry and have on our summer barbecue burgers!

The greenhouse is finally living up to its name. There is greenery everywhere. Flowers, fruit and veg is popping up on a daily basis

The temptation to start planting outside is great, but even though it was the warmest day of the year so far today, there is still the chance of frost, so I will have to wait for another 4 weeks or so. 

I was a bit worried that the strawberries were flowering too early and they wouldn't be pollinated, I shouldn't have been concerned, I wandered into the greenhouse this afternoon singing along to the rather loud music I was encouraging my plants with, ( Do you think Prince Charles plays Creedence Clearwater Revival to his plants)  and nearly swallowed the biggest bumble bee I have seen in ages, it was flying straight for my mouth!! goodness knows how I avoided it!

I hope she did her job and I get great strawberries. 

Finally it wouldn't be the end of a post now without a Gibson picture. He has spent the day outdoors running around having a great time. Unfortunately he has discovered that he can dig holes. Two today!

He was very proud of them but was concerned that I wasn't as happy about it as he was. So he tried to give me a kiss by way of an apology, I was though holding the camera at the time!