It’s a great time of year on the farm. Of course I think all times of the year are great here, but there is something particularly nice about Spring.
The peas are coming up nicely.
And so are the garlic, the broccoli, the potatoes, the onions and the cabbage.
The sweet corn is planted, and should emerge soon.
We have an abundance of asparagus.
And it seems we will have an abundance of grapes too.
We also have asparagus beetles, pea aphids, cabbage worms, potato beetles and weeds. Those challenges go with the territory in organic farming. The battle is on and we are confident of success.
The chickenhouse can now be properly called a henhouse. Two weeks ago we had four roosters. Within days of me finally getting around to culling out two of them, a hawk (presumably) killed our remaining two. Tonto and Ranger were part of our original flock and I really hate losing them. They will be missed. We’re still getting about 20 eggs a day from our reduced flock, and there is no nutritional difference between fertilized and unfertilized eggs. So we may stay roosterless. At least for a while.
Last week I had some gravel delivered to spread on our driveways, which had suffered badly from all the snow this year. The driver noticed our chickens and asked Rachel if she wanted another hen. He explained that he was down to one hen, who seemed lonely. Once Rachel could understand his thick Southern accent, she accepted his offer, and he later delivered Rosie to us. She’s a fine looking Aracuana who lays pretty blue eggs. As is so often the case around here, a loss is accompanied by a gain.
Rachel invited Cherie and I to supper a few nights ago. Cherie later pointed out to me that it was the first meal I’d eaten in the Old House in about 45 years. It is very heartwarming to a sentimentalist like me to know that once again a family is living there.
As we were preparing to eat, Rachel asked who wanted to say the blessing. Eight-year-old Abe and five-year-old Anna both enthusiastically volunteered. Abe went first: “God, thank you for the food. (pause) And please cure Michael J. Fox of his disease. Amen.” We all smiled. Then Anna, with a very serious look on her face, asked that we all hold hands. We did and she proceeded, “Jesus, please cure me of my disease.” “YOU DON’T HAVE A DISEASE ANNA!,” Abe immediately shouted. It was impossible to keep from chuckling. Once order was restored, Anna sweetly thanked Jesus for the food and we enjoyed a nice meal.
Early yesterday morning I walked out to the back pasture to check on the goats. Along the way I saw a big wild turkey. When I found the goats, they were in a thicket, happily eating briers. In their midst, undisturbed by their presence and seemingly just as happy, was a rabbit. I love the harmony of White Flint Farm.