I thought September-October would be when things would start to slow down, the winter garden is planted, the chickens are healthy and laying eggs, and the summer canning season is coming to an end. But I was wrong....
Lately I have been up to my elbows in landscaping. Here at our home and also at my folks house and a friend's new goat dairy. I have been tutoring my nephew, I start a new part time job this coming Wed, and I have recently started babysitting for a set of 2 year old twins, one of which has Type I diabetes. I am also in the beginning stages of starting a blog for a local school garden I volunteer with! Whew and I thought I was busy with all of my normal chores....
Speaking of normal chores. I thought I was done canning, at least until the apples were in full season. But I was wrong, we are STILL getting green beans. Yes folks, central NC, October, still getting basket fulls of pole beans. We planted these pole bean plants in the early spring along with our bush beans. All summer the plants grew up the fence and never once produced a flower. Along comes late August and the plants decide they are finally ready to make some beans. We have picked beans 2-3 times a week since and there are still blooms and tons of beans on the vines as we speak! I have even had enough to can a few quarts at a time...speaking of...I have at least 2 quarts waiting to be canned in the fridge.
We also have a Buff Orpington that went broody a few weeks ago. For those of you who are not familiar with this term, it basically means she is sitting on the eggs being a good mom waiting for them to hatch. This would be great if the eggs were fertilized, but they are not. So this poor little hen is mustering all of her strength to sit on eggs that wont hatch, sometimes she even sits on nothing. Poor confused hen.
She wont come out of the nest box, she wont eat, and she wont drink. This is not a good scenario for our little hen. So the poor little girl is confined to a wire cage at the moment. It sounds cruel but allowing her to stay broody and die of starvation is even worse. The wire bottom in the cage allows air flow under her belly, which in a hen's little brain is not a good situation when you are trying to keep eggs warm. Since she can't nest she should snap her out of the broody mind-set and go back to being a happy egg-layer.
We are seeing some progress with her. She is eating and drinking regularly and she has stopped making the broody "cooing" and "clucking" noises and has progressed to squawking and "bock-bocking" (yes I just attempted to spell the sound a chicken makes!). We expect her to lay an egg soon and then she will be released from her brood-breaking prison.
Ah yes, the table of pears. Our dining room table is covered completely in pears thanks to a dear friend. So it looks like I will be doing some serious canning in the next week or so!
So I apologize for not being here to update you all on my craziness and sorry for the massively long post! So for your enjoyment, here are some pictures of me and my nephews and our recent visit to a friend's goat dairy, Prodigal Farm
This horse didn't want his picture taken!