When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they will not overflow you. Isaiah 43:2

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Strawberries and Eggs

The two things I love most in our outdoor life right now are my strawberry patch and the chickens. One is productive, one is not.


OK, I planted my strawberry patch over six months ago. I have diligently fertilized, watered, weeded and loved the patch. I have nice plants that look fine. But I have had exactly TWO very small strawberries grow from the eight plants I have out there. I'm over it! I could have bought seventeen flats of pesticide-laden grocery store strawberries by now for the amount of water, fertilizer, soil, and time I have spent out there.


I love our chickens. No really, I do. It's ridiculous how much joy I get from their antics and weirdness. Chickens are so weird, but so interesting. And I love that we have a dozen eggs a day to eat or share or whatever. I also love that my husband goes out there and "tends the chickens" in the mornings. It's just so countrified and cute.
Whenever I take out the recycling or trash, or wander out to the compost pile to dispose of all our non-trash items, I say a hearty "Hi girls!" to the chickens, and I swear they cackle a happy response.
The knowledge that no matter how broke I make us by the end of the month, we have a protein rich source of nutrients right outside the door makes me smile. Oh and when I buy box cakes, never a worry about whether we have an egg or two to throw in there!
Box cake...a whole separate post...have you read that ingredient list? Oh my gosh, WHY do we allow things like that in our bodies? So not good for us. But, really yummy.


jen said...

I've been wondering about getting chickens. How much work is it? Do you have a dog? How do you pen them?


I have been wanting to do a post about some of these questions because we get asked a lot. If you use the deep litter method, the work is minimal...a little weekly maintenance and a big clean out every six months--in a dry climate. If it rains a lot where you are, it will be stinky. We had a wet year and had to pump out the poopy water--that was awful. Otherwise, they are very self-sufficient once you get a good waterer and feeder installed. Maybe I'll have my hubby do a post just about that. He built our coop from scrap, so I think it cost us about $7.50 total! LOL! We have a fabulous Border Collie who stalks the chickens, but has never actually bit into one. The coop has plastic chicken wire all the way around it so he can't get in. I'll post more with photos for you! They are super fun (and you can't beat having PRODUCTIVE pets!) Oh and www.backyardchickens.com is a fabulous resource!

Dimpled Dempseys... said...

Regarding your strawberries, I bet they'll be much better next year. They need to be in the ground a few years before they really start producing. Ours looked just like yours three years ago when we planted them. Now, we can't keep up with all the picking!

Make sure you keep fresh straw under them, too. Otherwise, slugs and other critters will take over.

Dani said...

Jeremiah wants to plant strawberries once we're home owners. I love his faith in me that WE CAN DO IT but I can't even keep my cacti alive! My thumbs are all brown.

So kudos to you that your plants are even alive! I'll rejoice in that for you. :)