Got an old rusted galvanized chicken water lying around? Don't throw it out. You can easily turn it into a cute portable garden planter for bulbs, herbs, flowers or even veggies. Here's how:
Egg production has been picking up and signs of spring are unmistakable here in Virginia, so it's hard to believe it was snowing just a few days ago! I am getting antsy to start gardening, but am holding off since we're expecting nights below freezing next week again. Please enjoy this peek at our week.
I write with Lisa Murano from Murano Farms over at the Backyard Poultry Magazine blog and have been a long-time fan of Lisa's own blog, Murano Chicken Farm, so when I read a post she wrote awhile back on how easy it is to grow fodder for your chickens, I decided to give it a try.
I love making soup because it's not an exact science. I love to bake also, but baking generally requires pretty precise measurements and ingredients. Soup is a more laid-back endeavor, suited for when you have some ingredients that seem like they would go well together, but you can't decide exactly what to make.
My husband bought us a Keurig coffee maker for Christmas. If you know me (as he clearly does!), it was the perfect gift for me. I have such a short attention span, I get bored with a coffee flavor before I even finish a pot. So this way I can have three cups of coffee, each a different flavor if I so choose.
My friend Kate from Farmhouse 38 is one of the craftiest people I know - and I mean that in the very best of ways! So when she recently let me in on a little secret that cans are the 'new' mason jars, my wheels started turning. Thanks to the wonders of Pinterest and Instagram, I saw so many cute tin can crafts. Seriously lacking much time, I settled on making some super easy tin can flower vases for Valentine's Day, Easter or Mother's Day.
Chickens are true omnivores. They are not vegetarians. When left to their own devices as they have been for generations on family farms, they will seek out a wide variety of weeds, grasses, seeds, grains, fruits, vegetables....and yes even 'meat' or protein, usually in the form of bugs, slugs and worms. But woe to the lizard, snake, mouse or toad that ventures into a chicken run. Farm chickens have also been known to drink fresh cow or goat milk.
This spring when you're planning your garden, why not plant some extra for your chickens? Planting from seed is extremely economical and a great way to reduce your feed bill a bit. Supplementing layer feed with a varied diet of healthy produce is beneficial to your flock. Here are my top twelve choices for garden plants our chickens love:
Even though we don't really have a 'true' hardcore winter here in Virginia, nonetheless, I'm longing for spring. I can't wait to start getting my gardens prepped and some seeds started in the house. I'm done with the dead grass and mud everywhere. It's time for some green to start showing up around here!
There's still snow on the ground in many places, the ground is frozen solid and will be for several more months, but that doesn't mean that you can't start to plan your spring garden. One of my favorite winter past times, in addition to knitting, drinking tea and making up my chick and duckling wish lists, is flipping through seed catalogs and planning what to plant in my herb, edible flower and vegetable gardens.
Cinnamon is commonly used to help treat muscle spasma nasal congestion, coughing, infections, and the common cold. Read more about using cinnamon and other natural remedies for respiratory issues in your chickens HERE.
Our second snowfall of the winter blanketed our farm in such beauty, I couldn't stop taking photos! After being totally freaked out by the snow, our first-year chickens and ducks seem okay with it, and those who have lived through snow before took it all in stride.
Although the snow prevented me from tackling a few outdoor projects I have in mind, it did afford me time indoors to write a few magazine articles and work on my second book. Yup, you heard it here first - I'm writing another book!