"United we bargain, divided we beg."

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Slow Week on the Farm

There's not much to do around here. I'm just twiddling my thumbs, waiting for it to finally, really be spring. The goats are still pregnant. The pony is still pregnant. The grass is still dormant. The buds on the fruit trees are still tiny and tightly closed. 

I can't plant anything until the weather stops playing this crazy game in which it snows in the morning, maybe hails a little bit just for fun, and by mid-afternoon it's sunny and warm enough for a t-shirt. That's been going on for weeks now. I have the garden beds all laid out and raked, and seedlings started in the playroom, and there's just nothing else to do yet.

Except, of course, I need to get a chicken control system in place. The seeds the little girls planted a couple of weeks ago were scratched up and eaten by chickens. The chickens just adore the freshly tilled earth in the garden beds. It's chicken heaven. I love to watch them, waddling and scratching and somehow looking like plump old ladies wading at the beach. But I can't let them dig up all my plantlings, of course. I know from bitter experience that my first idea, stapling mesh over the garden boxes, is not likely to work for long and will probably result in injury as well. Certainly cursing, and plenty of it. But I wonder about big sheets of clear plastic, the kind that you buy at the fabric store on giant rolls. It's sort of like industrial strength saran wrap. I'm thinking it might be useful not just for physically protecting the seedlings but also as a kind of cold frame or mini-greenhouse, if you will. 

I'd go out and get some today, and scatter-sow some spinach under it, if it weren't raining like crazy.