Sunday, April 24, 2011

Finishing the garden cage

Putting chickenwire up can be a tricky endeavor to say the least. The system we have applied is starting by rolling the chickenwire out on the ground, measuring about one foot longer then the measurement of the space you want to cover.

We then place temporary nails to hold the chickenwire in the approximate placement, then anchor one end. Starting at the anchored end we angle the large headed nails under one of the wires and stretching the wire while we hammer the nail into place.

At first it is very loose and does not look like it will ever get tight. But if you I'd catch the wire in this manner it will be almost as tight as a drum.

At the threshold to the gate. We placed cinderblocks embedded in the Earth. This will keep animals run digging underneath the entrance. Around the circumference of the cage we attached the wire to the bottom perlin and buried it in the ground about a foot with 6 inches curving to be outside.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

New play yard for the chicks

The chicks are about four weeks old now and they outgrew their limited space I had set up for them in the greenhouse.
I fenced off a portion of the enclosed yard for the chicks with chicken wire and netting. So as they would keep within their designated space.I took some plywood pieces and leaned them up against the chicken coop building and protected it on one end with another piece of plywood to protect the baby chicks from the cold nights. I also strung a lamp and placed it in this makeshift A-frame. This will give them a cozy place to sleep at night and also protection from the sun during the day. I like using this large feeder for their food. I can put in about 10 pounds of feed for them all at once. This section of the chicken yard also contains the rainwater, so I know they will never run out of water. I also feel it is very important for baby chicks to get exposure to the sun light, and here they have it all.

Garden Update

The blueberry cage is ready for the final chicken wire to be applied.
I have been covering the lettuce this year and have really had success in growing sweet lettuce for an extended period of time, I will see how long this will last !
The blueberry bushes are loaded with fruit. They look as though they are ready to be picked and eaten, but blueberries take about a month from when they start turning blue until they are ripe.
I weeded everywhere and have applied a mulch of alfalfa hay. I have found this to be extremely beneficial to the plants for moisture retention and adding humus to the soil. The plants on the right are sugar peas and the little plants on the left just starting to take off our cucumber plants.
Those are carrots on the left row and just the start of squash plants on the right-hand side.
Here are the tomato plants in cages, due to the fact of my greenhouse starter failure, I purchased plants already 10 inches tall. Maybe next year I can fine tune the process.
The raspberries are just starting to leaf and grow.

And here is the start of the baby grapes, I thought I may have cut them back way too much that they might not produce this year, but it looks like they are giving a start in the right direction.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

The baby chicks are growing...

The baby chicks are growing rapidly and it is almost time to change their environment to a larger enclosure. They are about three weeks old and it is hard to imagine that they came out of a small egg.

An egg laying chicken is mature or at the age of five months, that is when they start laying eggs themselves. The chickens that you eat are mature at six to eight weeks of age and it is at that time that they are butchered, and end up weighing about four or 5 pounds.