After discovering the three splintered fruit trees in what used to be our beautiful orchard, I placed several notices in strategic places regarding the sale of a goat. I had a buyer lined up, but when I called to confirm the sale, he informed me that his wife decided that Daisy was “too much goat” and she was worried about her ability to handle her. I was slightly irked, because I hadn’t even described Daisy’s amazing ability to prune roses and cherry trees, or her ability to levitate over five foot fencing. But then I decided in the end it was a good thing, because she has spent the last week looking extra cute and staring at me with accusing eyes. Since she’s eaten everything she can reach in the orchard, at least I don’t have to worry about that any more. But if she gets into my blueberry patch or the garden, we’re having curried goat kabobs for dinner.
Not that there’s much to eat in the garden yet, but I was able to plant a few things. I’m waiting until late May to plant everything in the greenhouse, since I still need to harden off everything inside it by leaving the doors open at night. Gene rototilled the garden plot today, and I planted everything that was in the cold frame: artichokes, cabbage, brussels sprouts, onions, and two tomatillos I set outside a few weeks ago to test their ability to withstand the colder evenings. The chickens are devastated at being denied access to their favorite worm hunting ground, but they’ll have to get used to it.
I discovered a few days ago that one of my young silver-laced cochins has developed into a cross beak. Although I’ve never had one previously, I’ve read quite a few articles about the condition. Basically it’s a genetic disorder that really doesn’t have a cure. It usually shows up around four months, which is how old Cross Mama is. So far she is eating and drinking fine, and growing normally. She’s one of the friendliest chickens we have, and loves to follow me around the yard. For now I put her in the empty garage brooding box for meals so she can eat with no competition, and give her crumbled feed since she can’t really eat the pellets any more. If her beak gets more crossed, then eventually I’ll have to hand feed her mash. Gene thinks I’m nuts, but I don’t mind being her personal chef at all.
Speaking of personalized cooking, I haven’t stumbled upon the type of treats the three new turkeys like. They’ve turned up their beaks at watermelon and strawberries, and are the only creatures on the farm who disdain Wheat Thins. I don’t know if White Midgets are different from other turkey breeds, but Thanksgiving and Christmas loved all those things. Sam, Rosalie, and Pele also do one other creepy thing that I don’t remember Thanksgiving and Christmas doing – they sleep standing up, and continuously peep while they sleep. (Cheeping and peeping while sleeping – I’m the next Dr. Seuss!) It sounds cute, but it’s actually kinda creepy. They huddle up with their heads in the middle of the circle, quietly peeping their secrets to each other while they snooze. It reminds me of those three witches from that Clash of the Titans movie, the ones that share one eyeball among them. They definitely give off a “we’re plotting against you” vibe. At this point I’m glad they’re a miniature breed.