Friday, February 26, 2010

Going green and barn demolition

It's been busy at BC Farms lately. The weather has been crazy and Ian has been dismantling a barn on the property that was collapsed prior to the purchase of the property. The process is long and drawn out. The prior owners decided to leave us with the barn full of garbage.

It has been a process of demolition, cleaning and salvaging. Ian has been salvaging as many boards as possible. The good wood is being de-nailed and stored, while the bad rotted wood is disposed of. We hope to construct another barn in it's place in the future. For now, some of the wood may be used to build a chicken tractor and shed. This was Momma cats favorite place to hang out, but she is going to have to find a new hangout soon!

Friday, February 12, 2010

First Egg!

Everyone mark your calendars! BC Farms' first egg was laid yesterday! Ian found it after he came home from work in one of the nest boxes. Good job ladies!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Food for Thought

It's cold out now, but soon spring would be here, and that means for anyone who lives on a farm or has enough patio space to sneak a few planters on now is the time to plan out this year's garden (if you were really on top of thing though you would have started planning in the fall and perhaps started some plantings then).

BC Farms hopes to produce some serious food this year, from some delicious chicken dinners to fresh salsa, and apples that aren't deformed. In the fall I'm hoping for a glorious pumpkin patch fwith sugar pumpkins for pies to Connecticut's for jack-o-lanterns, to huge pumpkins just to say "In 2010 we grew these huge pumpkins and we would've brought them to the Big E but they broke the forklift...".

If you thought about raising some livestock or growing some veggies this year (mmmm fresh string beans), this may help sway your decision: "If every U.S. citizen ate just one meal a week (any meal) composed of locally and organically raised meats and produce, we would reduce our country's oil consumption by over 1.1 million barrels of oil every week" (-Steven L. Hopp, Oily Food)...that's 46,200,000 gallons of oil. Which is a lot.

Locally and organically raised meats and produce lower oil usage because they don't use as much fuel to transport, and there aren't any fossil fuels used in their fertilizers or pesticides. Going to your backyard uses no fuel (and burns calories instead of gas!), and local farmer's markets allow you to buy your produce for the week, along with goodies like goat milk soap and free range eggs, at one stop away from the craziness of the super market, and not only do you know where your food is coming from, but you get to meet the person who grew it. Not a bad deal.

If eating an entire meal made up of local produce makes you panic, I think it's more than acceptable to work it in through the whole week. Fresh berries on your cereal in the morning, a salad with fresh greens for lunch, and a chicken pot pie with the odds and ends in it seems pretty good to me!

In one of the books I read, it said that vegetable gardening should be based around your current diet, so if you don't eat carrots and Swiss chard then don't plant them. However, I think the opposite is true and that it is worth the 49 cents at The Christmas Tree Shop (I didn't make that number up, their seeds are on sale from .49-1.29) to try something outrageous...and if you don't like it, feed it to the chickens.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Elusive Barn Cat

Mama Cat spotting yesterday on the farm! She was hunting mice in the back field. Usually she hangs around the fallen down barn, and every now and then when see her going in or out of her little "den" in the smaller barn where we feed her.

All Tucked In

The chickens seem to like their new house. It's definitely more easy to clean and has some nice perches for them to roost on (more were added after this picture so they all have a spot). It has windows and vents that are closed for now, but can be opened in the summer to cool it down. It also has a chicken door with a ramp, a people door, and nest boxes (which the rooster is roosting on). Roosts are important, especially in winter, because it helps the chickens stay warmer by being able to "fluff" themselves over their feet. The dog houses that they used to be in will probably be converted even more into coops, or converted into a chicken tractor that can go between the vegetable rows during the day to get rid of bugs (or along the woodline and in the field to eat ticks), or as a brooder/nursery for chicks and hatching eggs.

Basic Instinct

If there was a doubt in anyone's mind that Tartan was a border collie, that doubt should no longer be there. Tartan is now enjoying his days on the farm trying to stare down chickens, and has assumed the typical herding poses to move them around. Unfortunately for Tartan, one of the Lunches is a little more stubborn than the rest, and decide to stare him down.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Chickens' New House!

Ian bought a chicken coop at the Petrowsky auction last weekend. It's pretty fancy!