I knew when I got chickens that they made a mess. I knew that they ate the grass and that they nibbled on plants. What I wasn't prepared for was the total destruction, on a biblical scale,that Margot, Babs and Geri wrought in the garden on Wednesday.
Up until now they have dug holes in the beds to have dust baths, nibbled on pretty much everything and made lots of mess on the lawn, but all in a rather gentle way. I was happily thinking that we were going to co-habit the lawn very nicely. Then the chicken equivalent of hormones kicked in.
Wednesday they managed to destroy nearly every daffodil in the garden, they randomly shredded the leaves and bit of all the heads. I wouldn't have minded so much if they actually ate them, it was just that they seemed to take great pleasure in ripping them up and wandering off.
They can now only be described as truculent teenagers. I am hoping its because two of the three are now laying eggs, with the last soon to follow (I hope) and their chicken hormones are buzzing around all over the place. I want them to calm down and until they do they are no longer allowed the freedom of the lawn. My poor plants can't stand it.
So for now they are still on the lawn but in a makeshift pen. I just want to give all the newly appearing plants a chance to get established before the ravenous three descend upon them. They don't like it and can be seen staring at the few remaining daffs with a gleam in their eye..
As I just mentioned, two of the Hens are now laying. We got the second egg yesterday but who was it? Geri or Margot. We think its Geri, only because the two eggs have both been laid in the same nest box and Geri and Babs often can be found sleeping together!
So again this morning two small but perfectly formed eggs laid between 8am when I let them out and 10am when I went for a quick check of the henhouse.
By 10.02am they were on their way back to the kitchen to my latest purchase, a rather nifty egg skelter that stores the eggs in order of lay so you always eat the oldest first. Our Niece Hannah recommended it and so Jim went online and found me one at http://www.omlet.co.uk/
10.05am four eggs, what shall I make? Its got to be cake, three used 1 left for something else.
Lovely yellow yolks.
And by 1040 am muffins to have with afternoon tea. Not bad, less than an hour from henhouse to ready to eat!
On to garden stuff. Its a bit of a frustrating time, as nothing I have planted outside has grown yet, I did though plant two rows of leeks yesterday, so now I am waiting for signs of Leeks, Potato's, Parsnips and Carrots.
There is much more going on inside the greenhouse. The strawberries are romping on and this morning I noticed that two of the plants now have flowers. I will have to plant them outside soon to make sure they get pollinated.
The Broccoli and tomato plants are getting to be a nice size and some sunflowers I planted for the borders in the allotment are doing really well.
So a few more weeks when the chance of frost is gone, they will all be outside.
Finally a couple of Gibson photo's. He is growing rapidly so got to take as many puppy pictures while we can!