One potato, two potato…

Jul 27, 2010 | 1 comment

Bonus Crop

     Nyel didn’t plant a vegetable garden this year – one of the many effects of having a gimpy leg and the subsequent knee replacement.  Now that his mobility is improving, he’s thinking about the possibility of  getting in a few late crops.  So, yesterday he spent several hours readying a raised bed or two and planning how he would fence them off from the chickens.
     Over the course of the summer, ‘the girls’ have apparently decided that the untended beds are theirs by squatters rights.  Each bed appears to have a particular purpose.  One they use for dust baths, a necessary and presumably enjoyable chicken pastime.  They dig a shallow hole and nestle in, covering themselves thoroughly with a layer of dirt – a clever trick they use to prevent parasites from establishing themselves on their legs and feathers.  They sometimes spend an hour or so contentedly dusting, then shake themselves off and move off to begin another chicken activity.
     A second raised bed also has an exclusive use by the hen crowd.  It is for digging and foraging.  The holes – craters, actually – get quite deep as they scratch and peck, sometimes rather frantically it seems to me.  I’m not certain what it is they are eating but it must be tasty as they expend considerable effort on this activity.
     Today Nyel did his own share of digging in a nearby bed where he had planted potatoes last year.  He must have missed four or five at harvest time for he found that volunteer plants have yielded quite a few new potatoes.  Interestingly, the chickens hadn’t shown any interest in that bed until Nyel was through with it.  Then those girls were on it like gang busters, scratching and pecking and clucking among themselves.  It’s not clear what their plan is for this bed, but I have no doubt that they have one.  Stay tuned…

1 Comment

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *