How to Grow Your Own Food: Planting Radish & Spinach Seeds

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With sunny skies and temps in the mid 50′s, Sunday was a perfect day for planing spring crops.  This time around I planted French Breakfast & Crimson Radish seeds as well as Monstrueux de Viroflay Spinach from Botanical Interests Seed Company.

The French Breakfast Radish is a new one for me.  I’ve seen these yummy radishes at the farmers market before but I have never tried them.  According to the package I should expect to be pulling up radishes in about a month.  I can’t wait.

And the spinach… Well let’s just say the Handsome Husband will be excited when the leafy greens are ready to be harvested.  Ever since he bought The Girl a blender for her birthday he has turned into a smoothie freak.  The HH intends to make spinach smoothies {oh yum} as soon as it’s ready to be harvested.

Is it just me?  Is he weird?  Have you tried a spinach smoothie before?

My new garden assistant: Big Martha.

I still have about 45 days until the tomato plants are ready to go into the garden boxes {Mother’s Day is the best time to plant tomatoes in the Seattle area}. So I went ahead and planted both the radish and spinach seeds in my raised garden boxes.  Just to be on the safe side though, I planted the seeds about 6″ from the edges as well as down the center of the garden beds.  Although the radishes are supposed to be ready to harvest in 28 days, the spinach can vary from 28- 50 days.

By planting the seeds near the edge of the garden boxes and down the center, if the radish and spinach are not ready to harvest by the time the tomatoes need to go into the ground, everything will be fine.  There will still be plenty of room for my tomato starts.

Planning ahead is key when you are dealing with a limited amount of growing space.  There is nothing worse than planting to much of one item and running out of room for the next.  Tomatoes, potatoes and squash are my first priorities this year.  But with a little planning, I think I’ll be able to fit everything in I want to grow.

Ye–Haw!  Now we’re farming!

Did you get a chance to work in the garden last weekend?
What’s on your to-do list?

 

Botanical Interests Heirloom Seeds

 

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Pictures of Baby Chicks

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I thought I would update you on the baby chicks we brought home 2 weeks ago and give you some insight to their evolving personalities.

Big Martha {Barred Plymouth Rock} is amazingly calm.  Nothing seems to bother Big Martha.  I think she might be the highest in the pecking order of this bunch.  I love her, she’s so friendly and sweet.

Buffy {Buff Orpington} is a total fruitcake.  This one is going to be trouble.

Squeakers {Sex-Link} wants to be held.  Until you hold her.  Then she wants to be put down.  But as soon as you put her down she comes up to your hand and wants to be picked up.  Another fruitcake.

Peanut {Easter Egger} is a fun bird.  Very curious, likes to be held and friendly.

Guess what?  We bought more chickens!!!

I’d like to introduce

Brown Fatty {Partridge Cochin}

White Fatty  {Cochin}

Baby Fat {Australorp}

So far all 3 of these babies are wonderful. No complaints.  They are all just tiny puff balls of love.

Since we brought home so many baby chicks from the Feed Store I had to cancel my order with mypetchicken.  The Girl Who Thinks She’s A Bird was a little disappointed she won’t be receiving her Silver Sebright Bantam, but  I told her we could order one next year and she seemed fine with it.

And… Get this… My neighbor Girly Girl is getting chickens too.  Apparently they are all the rage and she wants 4 of them.  She does not want baby chicks though. She is afraid her cat will eat them so she has decided to get pullets instead.

Upon hearing this I quickly offered her 2 of our birds.  Buff the Wayward Chicken and Peter the escape artist.  Because I am totally brilliant {and because she does not read this blog} I left out the adjectives when describing my offer of free birds to her.  I was rather smart and pointed out Buff laid brown eggs and Peter laid gorgeous pale green ones as she does not want any birds which lay white eggs.

Hot diggety… I get to unload some unruly chickens as soon as her husband builds a coop!

Life is good.

Good Neighbors: The Complete Series 1-3

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Peep Show: See Hot Chicks

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Yesterday I went to the feed store to buy a bag of chicken feed.

BIG MISTAKE.

While I was there I noticed the feed store had just received a shipment of baby chicks.  I walked around aimlessly for about 20 minutes trying to decided if I should bring a few home.

THEY WERE SO CUTE.

And I didn’t want to leave them there all alone.  What if someone creepy bought them? Or worse yet someone who just wanted to steal their eggs, chop off their heads and make chicken soup out of them? These were babies… Pet chickens.  Chicken you eat comes from the store right?  Not the PET {okay feed} STORE.

So after grilling the cashier as to the sex of the chicks over and over again I ended up going home with a bag of feed.  And a 75 gallon stock tank. No chicks.  Yet.

But…

As soon the The Girl Who Thinks She’s A Bird and Monkey Boy were finished with school we raced back to the feed store.

This is Squeakers {looking very tired}.  Squeakers got her name because she squeaked all the way home from the store.  She is a Sex-Link chicken and the smallest in our new flock.

This is Buffy.  She is a Buff Orpington.

Big Martha.  After little Martha ditched us last fall we decided we needed a replacement for her.  Only this time we bought the full sized Barred Plymouth RockNo more bantams.

The Girl named this cutie Peanut.  Peanut is an Easter Egger.  I’m hoping for pink or blue eggs from this little chick.  We’ll see.

Aren’t they sooooo cute?

Will YOU be getting baby chicks this year?  If so will you raise them as pets or are you planning to eat them?

Storey’s Guide to Raising Chickens

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Mavis Goes to The Feed Store…

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This morning I went to the feed store.  My original plan was to walk in, buy a 50lb bag of Organic Pride Feed and go home.  But in order to get to the feed display I had to walk by the seed rack first.

Crap.  I seriously need to invest in a pair of blinders.  What is it about the seed rack?  Why do I feel the need to stop and look.  Do I really think I am going to find a packet of seeds I don’t already have?

Well apparently so. I had actually been on the hunt for a packet or two of Patty Pan squash.  But what I didn’t know I needed {until I found it of course} was Watermelon Radish, Peanut Pumpkin and Blackeyed Peas.  I have grown watermelon radishes in the past but never peanut pumpkins or black eyed peas. I figure if I don’t like the black eyed peas I can always give them to the Hillbillys.  I know for a fact they love them.

Another splurge, was a Flock Block for Black Fatty and crew.  Do you have chickens?  Have you ever bought one?  Let me tell you, the Flock Block was not cheap. $11.99 to be exact.  It sure does smell good though. The Flock Block is filled with chicken yummies like cracked corn, whole wheat, barley, oyster shell, sunflower seeds and are you ready for this… Cane Molasses.

Now the only question is, how long will it last?

 

Chickens: Tending A Small-Scale Flock For Pleasure And Profit

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Do Chickens Get Depressed?

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There has been snow on the ground for the last 4 days.  Today will be the third day we have not left the house.  It is an absolute miracle we have not lost power yet because the road we live on has lost power every single time it has snowed in the past.  When the powdery white flakes started falling we took bets on how long it would be until the lights went out.  We set out lanterns and filled glass jars with candles and placed all the flash lights in a central location.

And so far… Nothing.  Don’t get me wrong.  We are THRILLED the power has not gone out… But it’s also a littler unnerving as well.

As we sit all warm and cozy inside, the chickens are outside.  Cold. Unhappy. Bored.  On Wednesday when 6 inches of snow fell on the  ground the chickens refused to come out of the coop.  Can you blame them?  The Girl brought her hens a large box full of leftover rice, bread crumbs and a few spinach leaves and placed it in the coop.  She also brought the tea kettle and filled an old pie tin full of water in case they were thirsty.

On the second day the birds finally ventured outside but spent the entire day huddled under the large cypress tree that’s adjacent to their coop.  The Girl asked to bring them inside.  I said no.

And today… Well it’s a little after 9am and they haven’t made their way out of the coop yet.  I think they are depressed.  Poor things.

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The 2012 Baby Chick Order Has Been Placed

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The Girl Who Thinks She’s a Bird and I sat down last night and placed our chick order with mypetchicken.com.  I like ordering from this company because they offer a huge selection and you can order as little as 1 of each variety to build a unique backyard flock.

This year we are splitting an order with a friend so we placed an order for 12 birds and we will keep 6 of them.  Here are the chickens we selected: [Read more...]

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Do Chickens Like Snow?

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[Read more...]

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How To Clip Chicken Wings

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Step #1 Catch Chicken.

Step #2 Assure chicken clipping her wings will not hurt.

Step #3 Fan wings out.

Step #4 Clip

Step #5 Release chicken back to her chicken run.  Be happy you no longer have to worry about Lucy the chicken escaping the compound and eating your fruits and vegetables this summer.
*If you require more detailed instructions head on over HERE.


The Joy of Keeping Chickens: The Ultimate Guide to Raising Poultry for Fun or Profit

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Please Help Us Select a New Flock of Chickens

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The Girl and I have begun our search for this years flock.  The minimum order over at Mypetchicken.com for our area is 6. We decided to start with a round of replacements first.  We have to replace White Fatty and Picasso because of that mean old Ricky Raccoon mistaking them for a snack.  And then there is Martha.  Martha flew the coop this past fall in an act of chicken rebellion.  She had a free spirit from the get go and would come and goes as she pleased.  However, we have not seen her in about 3 months now so we decided to order a replacement for her as well.  This time around though, we will be ordering the full size version of the Barred Plymouth Rock.  No more of those tiny Bantams.   They are way to quick and wiry to catch.  Nope.  No small birds here.  We like ours nice and fat here on the farm. [Read more...]

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Why I Hate Raccoons…

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And then there were 8.

The Girl walked over to the coop this morning to let the chickens out.  She was greeted with feathers strewn all over the backyard, the garden and on top of the chicken coop.  She knew instantly what had happened.

Ricky Raccoon ate Picasso.

From what we can put together… Picasso did not make it back to the coop before curfew.  The Girl locked up her birds last night but did not count heads.  Picasso must have come back sometime shortly thereafter and decided to hunker down on top of the coop.  At some point during the night, Ricky the Raccoon came along… Very sad.  Picasso was a sweet bird.

 

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

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