May 22, 2014 Farm News

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The end of the day, and as usual for this team, a job well done.

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The potato rows with potatoes just starting to poke through. The rows showing dark have compost spread down the rows.

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The Cockshutt No. 1 transplanter which we use to mark out the potato rows and make a groove into which the potatoes are planted, every 12 inches, covered with compost and soil and then patiently watched.

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The horses are on the single row cultivator renewing the seed beds.

Lots of planting getting done now.  The weather, though a bit cool at nights sometimes is now providing us with lots of warmth and a good amount of rain to get things growing.  Everything is perhaps three weeks behind in the growing season.  Things that are flowering now would have flowered 3 weeks earlier in an average season.

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Broad beans growing well, peas just coming through and carrots up but so small you have to get down real close to see them.

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Looking slowly better week over week.

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Looking across the newly planted and growing garden.

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One of the Silkie chicks. Not sure yet if this a grey, a red or a blue though it does suspiciously look like a blue variety.

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A Silkie in hand. These cuties are also friendly quiet birds.

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Now ducklings have to grasped a little more firmly as they are quick movers.

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Briar and a duckling.

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Some of the chicks, several different kinds here.

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Half of the ducklingsvery quiet.

Yesterday we made a trip to Performance Poultry near Trenton to get some Chicks and ducklings.  Five of the chicks are three weeks and a few days old and the rest were hatched out 6 days ago.  We have some Welsummer, Barnevelder, and Silkie chickens and Buff, Khaki Campbell, Cayuga and Runner ducks.  The first two chickens have a very dark eggs (sometimes) though the lay rate is somewhat low and the Silkies are excellent setters as well as cute little friendly birds.  All of these duck breeds are excellent layers and we could expect probably 200 eggs per bird per year, minimum, with the hopes of over 250 per year for each duck.  The chickens and ducks will not start to lay eggs though until at least 21 weeks of age which means somewhere around the middle of October before we start to get any eggs.  Lots of eggs then will be available for over winter but for the summer we will have to rely on the flock that we have now plus some more chickens that we will get at a ready to lay stage of about 18 weeks of age.

 

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