Sunday Homestead Update

It is very hard to believe how fast April is going by.  Doing these weekly Homestead Updates seems to drive home how very fast it really is going.  I often catch myself saying “it’s already time for another Sunday Homestead Update!?!?!”

We had a wonderful Resurrection Sunday celebration today with extended family.

Good things are happening at the homestead.

Garden

We have had wonderful weather, and have used that to get the garden prepped and ready sooner than it has ever been prepped and ready before.  We finished amending the soil, filled all the new boxes, and set up all the pea trellises.  We also buried the deep watering tubes for the cucumbers (wont need them for quite a while, but trying to get everything set up as far as lay-out).  We still need to put in the tubes for the tomatoes, and secure the fencing (rabbits chewed holes in a few spots and we need to put chicken wire in those spots).  Then we will be totally ready!

It is looking to be a warm spring, and we are contemplating trying to put in some pea and spinach seeds now just to see how they do, saving the majority for when we normally put them in mid-May.  We haven’t decided for sure yet.

We are researching drip irrigation systems and will probably install one in part of the garden as a trial this year.  That needs to go in before planting too.

The seedlings are doing well and continuing to sprout.  We are also continuing to plant more, this week it was the Brussels Sprouts.

Chickens

The incubation of the chicks we will be selling is hatching this week.  It is looking to be our largest hatch ever…however, you know the saying…don’t count your chicks before they are hatched.  We are hopeful though.

We have two hens acting like they might want to brood.  One is Banana, who brooded in January.  It is nice that she gave herself a good long break because I have heard of hens that are “serial brooders” and brood back to back to back in such a way that it isn’t healthy for them.  The other is Ebony, she is one of the 8-month-old hens from the high-altitude breeder’s hatching eggs.  We have given them each dummy eggs and are currently collecting breeding eggs.  If they seem serious on the dummy eggs in the regular coop they will be moved with their dummy eggs to the Mama Hen Pen where Eve is residing with her chicks.  If they stay serious there then we will give them the breeding eggs.  We have never moved hens into a pen with a mama who has chicks.  If it doesn’t go well (as far as the hens trying to attack the chicks or Mama Eve or something) then we can put Eve and chicks into the grow pen and let the hens go ahead and do their brooding, or move the hens back to the normal flock if it seems the disturbance undid their desire to brood.

Our older roo, Pepper, and two older hens headed to the freezer this week.  It is nice to have the meat, and it is part of the rotation for the breeding program.

Sheep

The sheep are doing well.  The warm weather has them playing, running, kicking, tossing their heads, and head butting each other.  It also has them sleeping in the sun.

Duncan was banded almost two weeks ago, and his parts still haven’t fallen off.  They are definitely dead though, so it is only a matter of time.

Daphne and Duncan are almost 4 months old now, so they are about done with their diet being different from the older ewes.  It will be nice to have them all on the same feed.

Holly

Our indoor dog, Holly, had an accident with some wire this week.  She is fine, but ended up with a wound on her leg that needed stitched and we put her on antibiotics as well.  I am so glad she is doing well, these types of things make me realize how attached I am to my big fuzzy brown floor pillow of a dog.

It is looking to be another week of wonderful weather!  We look forward to spending as much time as possible outside soaking in the beautiful mountain scenery.

 

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