Wednesday, December 19, 2012

First eggs!!

Many of you might recall we inherited chickens on Thanksgiving. Today I found our first eggs in the nest box! I'm sure Penguin the black chicken laid one of them this morning. The other not sure if it was Penguin or Light bulb.
Oh and our hellebores you saw the H. niger blooming already. Four others have buds on them already!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Manny's gone....

Last night after eating his dinner Manny was drinking from the kitchen sink. I can't recall seeing him since then until this morning. He usually scratches on the window glass to be let in several times in the middle of the night. Meg is away for her daughter's graduation in Wilmington.

Anyway a friend was here this morning hunting deer. He called me on his way out that a white cat was dead on the main road near our road. I'd asked him earlier if he'd seen Manny this morning and he had not. The main road is at least a quarter mile away and Manny rarely left the woods here. So I just finished burying him.

 Her is Manny shortly after we got the chickens! He loved to watch them and would even join me in the pen when feeding them. He'd even jump up into the coop.
 Grumpy was our male cat before Manny he used to sit in this bird feeder and watch the birds. Manny never caught any birds it might be because he was cross-eyed.
Here he is licking his nose. He'll be greatly missed he loved everyone and never met a stranger. This leaves us with Valentine the girl kitty. She'll miss stealing his food I'm sure.

Saturday, December 08, 2012

Manny is a smart kitty


The other night Manny got into the kitchen sink and was just sitting there. Meg proceeded to turn on the faucet and Manny took to drinking out of the faucet. I took these videos for your enjoyment with my new smart phone.

Also our niger hellebore is starting to bloom just in time for Christmas!

Saturday, December 01, 2012

Garden update December 01

The cold frames were planted November 18th kind of later than we usually plant. Just too busy with other things. Glad to report the kale and spinach are growing fairly fast and the carrots and lettuce is just coming up. Meg picked up some Swiss Chard seeds and we hope to make a spot for the chard and some rainbow carrots. Likely the new seeds will go in a smaller cold frame the second graders built last year

Friday I brought home a yard of compost and today I started using it. Planted 100 crocus bulbs I picked up at Lowes for 75% off. Also finally planted the last 4 big hellebores we dug up this summer when we moved Meg's parents. The camellia we dug out of Sharna's yard in Wilmington was planted today as well. Last weekend I planted more crocuses, pansies and 30 or so mixed daffodils.

A new huge project is being planned here! You might know I'm a handyman/builder and I just have reached the point where I need a decent shop. I have a 12' x 16' shed that is slam packed with tools and left over lumber and plywood. So we are in the beginning stages of planning a 20' x 24' garage shop. I'll do all the building except the wiring and shingles.

Placing the work shop here is a small problem, but we think we have a site in mind that is handy to the house and extending the driveway. Removal of at least three big trees will be required, one will at least be good firewood it is a big oak. We plan on getting a building permit.

While looking for a place to build the work shop we found the first ever blooms of our
climbing aster we planted 4-5 years ago and never had any luck with it.

 This climbing aster Aster carolinianus is supposed to be a native here, climbs to a size-able 10 foot plant. Bees and butterflies love it. I found another plant last summer and planted it in the garden. Last week I found a huge 3 gallon climbing aster at the Durham Garden Center and planted it under the screened porch, hoping it'll climb up the side of the porch.

The chickens are doing fine, no eggs yet. They let us hand feed them sunflower seeds. Meg has brought them lots of compost (apples and melons they love) from the school. Manny the cat has almost followed me into the chicken yard a few times, he just enjoys following us around the yard.