Saturday, July 29, 2017


We heard the noise first. The chickens make a very distinctive squawk when there is something of danger around. Usually it's a hawk flying low overhead. Whenever we're home, we go outside quickly to see what is happening. I grab my .22 rifle when I can.

This time it was a bobcat. A pretty good sized bobcat. It was about the size of our dog, so I'd guess about 2 feet high and weighing 50 pounds. He was stalking the chickens, pacing back and forth at the backside of the fencing. Waiting. The chickens panicked and started hopping and flying all over the place. Some made it inside the coop. Some flew over the fencing.

The bobcat caught one outside the fencing and dashed off into the woods. It all happened so quickly there was no time for photos and barely any time for getting a round or two off. All that was left were the feathers.

20 chickens now. 19 hens and one rooster.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

19.5 Bales

We finally managed to find someone willing to come cut and bale hay for us. It is the busy season and the larger properties get priority with the hay cutting services. We lucked out because he was on his way to a bigger job and detoured to take care of us.

Guv'nor has been working hard at improving the pastures. He does this with intensive grazing which takes more time and effort but is beginning to show the benefits.

The main section of hay pasture is about 12 acres. The guy who came used a huge tractor and cutter. It took him about an hour. He said later he was glad our gate was wide enough for him to get through. It was 14 feet wide. 

He came a few days later with the raking and baling equipment. It took him another hour to rake and bale the hay. We got 19-1/2 round, 6 foot bales. It's a little hard to compare exactly with previous years because the round bales this year were larger than the previous ones. We paid $24 per bale.

We have another smaller pasture to cut in front of the house but we'll have to find someone else because the gate is too narrow.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Chicken Prints

I noticed these chicken prints the other day. They made a pretty pattern in the sand. It had rained and the sand was damp so their prints stood out. Most of the prints make it look like chickens only have three "toes" but in fact they have four: one large, two medium, and one small.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017


We were given a kitten about six weeks ago by a family friend and fellow blogger. She had found it abandoned at the church building and felt sorry for it. When she mentioned that she didn't really need another cat, I told her we were desperate for cats. 

We really need several outside cats. Our mice are taking over the garage at the moment. I don't mind so much sharing a space, but they are so messy and destructive. I am beginning to despise them. 

We were letting the kitten roam inside the house for the first few days until we noticed fleas. At that point she was banished to the laundry room. We worked on the fleas for a week or so but they are just tricky. The flea collars do not work, if you were wondering. So we took her to the vet and he treated her for worms and ear mites as well. We're hoping the fleas are gone now. After a couple weeks we started letting her outside during the day and bringing her inside at night. Once she gets a little bigger, she'll stay outside all the time.

We've named her Honey, because she is a very light brown color. But I tend to mostly call her Kitty.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Brown Eyed Susan

Wild flowers have been growing around the back of the garage. I saw some of these a few years ago on the side of the road and thought they were pretty. I stopped and pulled up a handful with the roots. Then I planted them along with some of the other flowers I'd planted. This is the first year that I've noticed them.

At first we were calling them Mexican Hat, but now I think they're called Brown Eyed Susan. I'm sure you'll let me know if I'm wrong and I can change the title of this post. I'm hoping some of my local friends will know for sure. I'd hate to go through life calling them the wrong name.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Cream Peas

They did so well last year that I thought I'd plant more cream peas. I planted a mixture of the seeds from the packet and seeds that I'd saved from the harvest last summer. 

They sprout in about a week and grow quickly. I had a trellis last year but I thought I'd try without one this year. They've already caught up with the lima beans I planted several weeks earlier.

They're both growing so well, I just hope I can see the pods well enough to pick them later.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017


We have a post office box in town where we get most of our mail. We don't use our mailbox at the gate very much. I found weeds growing inside the last time I checked the mail.

Sometimes I find other things near the mailbox, like snakes.

Monday, July 10, 2017


I wasn't planning to plant watermelon this year. The last time I tried to grow watermelons it was pretty much a waste of time. Well, the chickens enjoyed them. I was actually thinking I'd plant cantaloupes but then several watermelon plants sprouted without being planted. I guess they came from last year's plant.

The vines were spreading out and blossoming and doing well. Then something happened and the vines began to wither. At first I thought it was not enough water. Then I noticed white bugs that I'm guessing are watermelon pests since they looked just like white watermelon seeds. I have since then googled a little and think they are called squash bugs. Pesky squash bugs.

I've watched and waited and finally decided to cut one off and cut it open. It was edible, I guess, but not a very good specimen. We ate some of it and gave the rind to the chickens. Then today I went ahead and just picked all of them and pulled up the vines. I'm just going to cut my losses and plant something else in that space.

I think one will be edible but the rest are either too small or have rotten places. The only good thing is that the chickens will love them.