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morning-chick Good Morning!

This is my new screen saver – Rosey!  She is growing right along and definitely has a different personality than the other two chicks;  I wonder if chicks have unique personalities like people do … we will see.

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They have become quite a bit more chirpy the past few days and at times they have stare downs with each other.  They will even chase or run at each other – time for more room maybe.  This weekend we  (we I will be helping) and taking notes and pictures for a blog post – “The Coop that Stan built” !

The seedlings are growing right along also …

seedlings-3-24-09

You can see a list of everything I hope to grow this year and I am still trying to figure out what to plant at which location.  I did cut my first batch of parsley yesterday and added some to my salad – what a fresh zippy flavor!

parsley

And yes, the crocus are blooming !

crocus-in-bloom

Well I have had these baby chicks for 1 week now and OMG they grow fast!  It’s like you go to sleep and wake up the next morning and they grew up!  Ok… now you have to understand I have never had chicks before so I am not a knowledgeable farmer on figuring them out – but I will tell you something they ARE fascinating!  Like this morning ,,, I had the camera (since it’s been a week) and Rosey was doing this -Rosey dancing?  I think she was doing the dust bath but I am not sure. 

I think we  have 2 roosters (Red and Rusty) and one hen Rosey.  So next weekend when we head down south I have on my agenda to purchase another hen – only because it’s the thing to do, I think.  I know, I know   15 -25 hens to 1 rooster but heck I can’t do that many and Rosey doesn’t need 2 roosters bugging her.  So if I try to even it out it may work and actually I am still not real sure who is who yet.

Finding the roost  Here Rosey discovered the roost and sat there.  I will tell  you this about baby chicks – they are simple, and a joy to watch … very skittish though, but ya know what !  They are happy critters!!  We should all strive to be so simple and happy…(but then again that can all change by next week or even tomorrow morning whenever this pecking order thing kicks in)

But for now I have Happy Chicks and I am Happy!

Baby chicks

Our trip down south was short but we sure did accomplish quite a bit and the main excitement for me was getting a few baby chicks.  The farm store has a “Chick Sale” and I was surprised at the variety of chicks they had.  We had agreed that I should only purchase 3 since they will be traveling back and forth with us (yes, I am crazy) but I may spend the summer months entirely down south (still to be determined).  They seem to have adjusted with all the moving around they had to deal with …

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2-baby-rir

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Rhode Island Red Baby chickens   A video I created – aren’t they cute!

I spotted a friend in the yard this morning – well, not so sure he will be invited over for a friendly lunch once the gardens are growing …

groundhog Baby Groundhog

I brought along the camera on the morning walk and captured some sure signs of Spring -

birds-along-path 

The picture is quite a distance so somewhat unclear, but those are geese in the background and the larger birds in front I am not sure!  I have seen blue heron and different cranes in the area, but one at a time.  There was 5-6 of these larger birds and I did video them but it is still unclear.  I need to scan my bird book!

ducks-on-path Pair of ducks

Video of ducks  I am learning how to video so it is a bit shaky – well,  ALOT shaky (I need to hold my breath and not move when taking videos!)   Another video

This is a slide show I created last year and shows some of the seedlings that I started and grew and this reminds me I need to do the same for this year….  Slide show    Make sure to watch the original view and turn up your speakers!

Something that came to mind as I was looking back at my notes and pictures from last year was a simple reality that alot of folks are intimated by gardening and hesitate just because they have never gardened before and…… there is so much different information out there it can be confusing.  So I thought I would help by suggesting a few plants to grow for the first time gardener.  These were easy for me to grow and gave me inspiration and a desire to try other plants!  A few herbs that work well are Basil, Dill, Cilantro and Borage.  Marigold and Zinnia are great flowers to add to a border or include them in your garden as companion plants.  The vegetable plants I suggest are Spinach, Pepper, Tomato, Squash and Cucumber.

Dig up an area that receives a good amount of sunshine during the day and make sure to keep your new garden watered.  As you experiment with growing you will look into different varieties that interest you and those that  you enjoy cooking with.  You will also find yourself searching out more and more information on soil, preserving and techniques that you want to try.  Start out simple in the beginning …

I grew flowers in the garden last season with the goal in mind to dry them and use them in flower arrangements.  I scanned many catalogs and online references looking for the right flowers to grow.  I succeeded with some and didn’t with others.  The flowers that I found really easy to grow, dry and arrange were Globe Amaranth, Yarrow, Autumn Joy Sedum, Statice, Strawflowers and Zinnia.  There were a few others like baby’s breath, larkspur and blanket flowers that also worked but I didn’t end up with alot of them.  I bundled up all my dried flowers and took them down south with me this weekend to create some arrangements for the home there.  Most if not all of these flowers were air dried (hung upside down secured with a rubber band).  I am happy with the results and will grow more of these this year along with others ….

gardening-cup-design

wooden-basket-designmason-jar-designapple-jar-design

dried-globe-amaranth Dried Globe Amaranth … a bundle of flowers and then the wreath that was created

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I will add some more design to the wreath but for the most part the flowers do most of the work in a design and everything came out pretty good I think…….finally!

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