Monthly Archives: May 2016

Let It Go

These little chicks are having a hard time keeping up with their mother. As far as she is concerned, her mothering days are over. They aren’t ready to be on their own. Since yesterday, they’ve been running around, looking for … Continue reading

Posted in About My Chickens | 1 Comment

A Little Tenderness

Old Billy, the tenderest rooster of the bunch. He is the father, grandfather, great grandfather, great great grandfather, great great great grandfather, great great great great grandfather, and great great great great great grandfather of many of the chickens here. … Continue reading

Posted in About My Chickens | Leave a comment

Potato Flowers in May

Barrow Alaska’s record early snowmelt has been in the news recently. Snow at NOAA’s Barrow Observatory started to melt on May 13, 10 days earlier than the previous record for Barrow. An equally astounding, much-earlier-than-usual phenomena are the early blooming … Continue reading

Posted in How Things Grow | Leave a comment

The Benefits of Going to Seed

Last year I found this variety of arugula with small serrated leaves. I let some go to seed and this year I have it coming up in droves. With a little effort and luck, I’ll get an established bed of … Continue reading

Posted in Happiness | Leave a comment

The Enthusiastic Garden Help

I can’t complain about the garden help’s enthusiasm. It seems to have no bounds. Happiness is infectious. If you’re trying to avoid catching it, keep happy dogs a long ways off. Their happiness is especially contagious. “Anything else?” Takuma 拓真 … Continue reading

Posted in Happiness | 1 Comment

Other Worlds

Bees live in a phantasmagoric world of shapes and colors and fragrances we can’t fathom. For brief moments, following them buzz around flowers, you can get glimpses of what their world is like. Imagine getting your dinner by sticking your … Continue reading

Posted in How Things Grow | Leave a comment

Life Stages and the Origin of Celtic Art

Let your kale go through its full life stages, and you get these stunning, brilliant, red hues when the plant enters old age. Kale goes out, bursting in flame. With leaves ablaze, the flower stalks which reached up high to … Continue reading

Posted in How Things Grow | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Foxgloves

So beautiful, so deadly, the foxgloves are blooming. It’s not toxic to bees, which frequent it in droves. But it is deadly to humans and many other animals, so deadly that it is also called Deadmen’s Bells.

Posted in How Things Grow | Leave a comment

It’s a Dog’s Life

Salmon berries are ripening. The much sweeter thimble berries aren’t far behind. I’ll nibble on a few salmon berries, but leave most for the birds. I’m spending hours in the garden every day, and the birds sing the entire time. … Continue reading

Posted in How Things Grow | Leave a comment

To Be as Fat and Light as a Bumblebee

Oh, to be as fat and light as a bumblebee. It must be fun to be so rolly-polly and still float effortlessly through the air. The news about bees disappearing is distressing. At least here at a man and his … Continue reading

Posted in How Things Grow | Leave a comment

Food as Art, Art as Food

This may be a pinnacle egg. Cognac laid this masterpiece yesterday. Is it food? Is it art? I think I should sell it to a psychologist to use in place of Rorschach cards. “Connect the dots in any order. There … Continue reading

Posted in How Things Grow | Leave a comment

Busy as a Bee

What could possibly be as busy as a bee? Two dogs helping me weed a bed to plant potatoes, that’s who. Takuma 拓真 and Ena 枝那 spent hours yesterday, and much of the morning today helping me prep a potato … Continue reading

Posted in Reflections | Leave a comment

Baby Potatoes and Peonies on Mother’s Day

It’s the beginning of May and there are baby potatoes in the garden. Dust them off, pop them in your mouth, and they are like little crunchy sugar bombs going off in your mouth. Takuma and Ena aren’t interested in … Continue reading

Posted in Happiness | Leave a comment

Dig, Dig, Dig

They are diggers. We found that out yesterday and today. Moles and gophers be forewarned, Takuma and Ena are here. In the woods and in the garden, Takuma and Ena dug deep, trying to find whatever it is that they … Continue reading

Posted in Reflections | Leave a comment

A Cat and Its Cow

This is what you don’t see in your large box store. This is one of the cats at Belfast Feed Store, a local feed store a few miles from us where we get many farm supplies, milk, cream, and honey. … Continue reading

Posted in Happiness | Leave a comment

枝那-Ena and 拓真-Takuma

The dogwood buds look like they are ready to take flight, or burst out in a chorus. May should be called Dogwood. It should be forbidden to build a house or apartment where the residents can’t see a dogwood. If … Continue reading

Posted in About My Chickens, How Things Grow | Leave a comment

New Protectors of the Chickens

The new protectors of the chickens have arrived. They are settling in well into their new home. They were part of a pack of seven dogs found in Okanogan, hanging out near an airport. The pack ended up in the … Continue reading

Posted in Happiness | 6 Comments

The First of the Year

The first chick of the year pokes its head out from under the warmth of its mother’s feathers. Tonight it is sleeping quietly under her, listening to her steady heartbeat. This is why every chick deserves a mother. I was … Continue reading

Posted in About My Chickens | Leave a comment

Serious Business

The chives are in bloom, it felt like August today. It’s the hottest May day I’ve seen in the eleven Mays we’ve been here. The hens take their egg laying seriously. They are adept at warning me with their eyes … Continue reading

Posted in Reflections | Leave a comment