Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The Birds and the Bees...

Chickens and honey bees that is. With this crazy cold weather you would think that everything would be trying to hibernate like the pigs in their straw piles. Everything except the chickens and the honey bees that is. Out of 17 hens, we have gotten over a dozen eggs all week long. While out gathering eggs, I spotted a honey bee out and about. On one hand, I wish spring was already here, but on the other hand we have so much to do before it arrives.

I put in our first poultry order of the year this morning from Murray McMurray Hatchery. I ordered 25 pullets for laying hens, and let each of the kids pick a bantam that they liked. We decided to add some color to the flock and the eggs as well and ordered Auracana's. They lay a tinted egg anywhere from mauve to olive green. We are also going to order Cuckoo Maran's, which lay a dark chocolate egg, but they were out of stock until March. I am planning to experiment by crossing our White Rock hens with a Cornish roo to produce a fast growing meat bird that I can hatch here at home.

After ordering chickens, I also ordered some new GMO-free Heirloom seeds from Baker Creek. They have a really neat website: and great customer service. My favorite is these Mexican Sour Gherkins, also known as Mouse Melons.

Mexican Sour Gherkin Cucumber

I want to try canning them up using my Watermelon Pickle recipe. Mother Earth News also did an article on these a few years ago that includes recipes.

Stay Warm!

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