Well, today is the last day to enter our Ultimate Plant Cage GIVEAWAY sponsored by Global Garden Friends and it is also the last day to submit nominations for Mother Earth News’ Homesteader of the Year (**wink, wink**). So don’t forget and at the very least, enter our giveaway for some garden swag! Winners will be announced tomorrow morning.
This week the weather has been deceivingly warm, but us mountain folk know that it’s just the eye of the storm. You never put your snow boots away before March is over. In fact, it was so warm on Wednesday that I actually had to dig out my tank-top. I think we hit 75*F! Sure, that’s not hot (and we get in the 100’s here) but it is too warm for March weather in the Sierra foothills. Even when I went out to feed the animals this morning I could hear all sorts of birds singing. They must think it’s spring. I didn’t even need my sweatshirt! You know how some mornings in the summer you can just smell the heat coming or even see it in the morning sunlight? I’m not trying to be poetic here… but I have spent a good amount of shady summer mornings in the garden and that’s what this morning feels like. Like slip n’ slides, sprinklers, and sunscreen are just around the corner.
But we have to get through one more inevitable snow storm. I have seen it snow here as late as the first week of June. You just never know.
So my morning chores have been pretty peaceful lately. I wake up, drag my sleepy butt out of bed, grab two trays of fodder from the rack, and thump down the stairs (hopefully quiet enough that I don’t wake Cami). With a box cutter I cut each fodder slab into eight pieces on the table in the Rabbitry. Each square section is about half a pound, but I have my scale at the ready. Grown ups get one square, Dandelion and her babies get three squares now, the big kids inside get two and a half squares. I double check water bottles and then refill sunflower seeds and hay.
Today I took all the wooden panels down to allow them more air and then shut the door to keep stray dogs and cats out. Around the corner from the Rabbitry I make my way to the hutch where all the boys are growing out. Those big kids get three squares of fodder, their hay, and since they were nearly out– fresh water. Down the little hill, the chickens get the rest of the fodder and they happily accept it going for the seeds first.
When I make my way back to the porch, I drain the water out of the bucket of barley that soaked over night. The grain is divided into two clean trays and brought inside. At this point I water the whole rack of fodder and drain the tub below if I need to.
My morning chores really only take about twenty minutes since I have them down in perfect order. I pretty much make a circle around the property and once summer does show its face (no such thing as Spring), the circle will be bigger and take a bit longer with the inclusion of garden care and the addition of quail.