Monday, September 30, 2013

In which our hens migrate and explore Haiku Farm Garden 2.0

We built a new garden this summer.
Lisa pays her rent by working on extra-awful jobs around the farm
...like digging post-holes.

(When I say "we," of course I mean "I thought up the plan and somebody else did the hard work.")

Jim, always the Good Parent, offers instruction in
the art of planting a plumb post

It was really necessary, though.  The beans and sunflowers would've gone through the roof this year, if the garden had a roof.  

And the pumpkin vines, 
Atlantic Giants and Jack-o-lanterns
which like to grow out rather than up, 

This photo was taken in late August

have literally jumped the garden fence and are now heading for the pasture.  

This photo was taken today
Our super-enriched garden soil is almost too successful.  

Don't just sit there, Roo.  Run away!
So, now we have Garden 2.0.

Once we got the entire garden wrapped in chicken wire

I actually did the chicken-wire part myself.
 Jim moved in the second-stage staff to take care of grass annihilation.


Chickens to go!
 This garden has a few "low spots" where the gates are, so we carefully trimmed wings to discourage escapes.

Trim one side = chicken can still flap away from predators,
but can't fly in a straight line

Chicken Twelve  was exempted from the wing-trimming.  She gets picked on by the other birds, so we wanted her to be able to leave the garden if she wanted.

As it turns out, this was wise.  Because, late in the afternoon on the first day

Exploring their new surroundings.

the rain monsooned, and the wind blustered, and most of the hens had forgotten how to find the door back into their cozy little house to get out of the weather.

Because chickens are really stupid.

Except for Twelve.  She looked at those dumb clucks wandering around the garden in the wind and rain, shrugged her little feathery shoulders, and flew out of the garden and into the House at Twelve's Corner, where she settled down and went to sleep.

As for the others...


fortunately, chickens are even dumber at dusk than they are in daylight.  So I was able to capture each hen and toss them, one-by-one, into their coop and out of the weather.

And in the morning:


It was all good again.