We got the peanut butter fence up on the farm — Scott and Anya attached the metal strips, and I smeared the with peanut butter. Since they are connected to an electric fence line, the idea is that a deer will lick at the peanut butter (evidently something they really like) and get an unpleasant jolt. It’s a solar energizer, so not too unpleasant. But enough for them to think “I’m gonna go eat this other green leafy stuff!”.
We started our three sisters planting today — about 660 sq ft of tilled soil. I found an open pollinated SH2 corn developed by Kultursaatin in Germany, which we planted today. Anya interspersed the field with Rouge Vif D’Etampes pumpkins. In about two weeks, we’ll add scarlet runner beans. Even if we don’t produce enough to sell this year, we’ll grow enough seeds to expand the garden area this year.
It’s been an adventure, but the tractor is finally home! We went out yesterday to drive it home, but a leaky hydraulic system squashed that idea. Today, we got a trailer (had to run home and get the right plug for the back of the pickup), drove out, and trailered the tractor home. That was quite an adventure — I couldn’t imagine trying to drive a tractor that distance!
Happy February! We got our first duck eggs yesterday — I wasn’t expecting them to be laying again so soon. Anya and I took a break after lunch to cut dried grasses for the ducks’ bedding. As we opened the coop to put in the new bedding, there were two duck eggs in the farthest, darkest corner of the coop.
In addition to growing open pollinated, heirloom vegetables — we’ve got a flock of heritage turkeys. These guys are Black Spanish turkeys. Unlike the broad-breasted turkeys raised commercially today, they walk around and do turkey things all day. They are all waiting by the gate as we walk over to the poultry pasture, and there are always a few turkeys following us around if we’re working in their area.
The two males we have from last year were amazing with the little poults this Spring. They’d take a share of poults and snuggle them at night to keep them warm. They’d march around them as the little ones pecked around during the day. Even now that the younger turkeys are almost fully grown, the older turkeys stand guard and make sure everyone gets access to food and water. Watching the adult turkeys with the younger ones has been right educational, and I am eager to hatch some of our own poults next year!