Posted by: juliegirl | November 27, 2009

backyard thanksgivings

What an incredible day in the backyard. Over the last three months, I’ve had a growing list of backyard to-dos that included everything from ‘keep the chickens from killing every living thing’ to ‘scoop the poop’ to ‘eliminate the rat colony’ to ‘move the raised beds.’ Significant projects, all. (Well, except for the poop.) Here’s where we began…the before shot from last year.

Lush and green. (Haven for rats)

A month ago, I enlisted my friend Fred to build the chickens their very own fenced in area, and I took down all but one banana tree that same day. (Had to keep a banana source, after all.) The rats were relentless, and the chickens *still* haven’t recovered. The banana trees were not only edging out the sunlight, but sustaining a very bold rat population. Since the banana trees have come down and we put down poison, the rats have disappeared. Only Evangeline has resumed laying, but I have high hopes that the increased sunlight will not only grow the vegetables but result in more eggs.The girls love their new fenced-in home. They’re still retiring to the coop each night, but from sun up to sun down they can delight in any number of chickeny activities. Pecking through the compost heap, taking a dirt bath, mining for worms, hopping up on top of the coop, chasing after a sister chicken, bawk bawk bawking. You know how it is.

To the left is the chaos of putting in a fence, taking down the bananas, and reorganizing the whole backyard. The great guys that helped me clear everything out got to take home the enormous smoker that has been sitting idle for a year. They thought they were getting a deal, but thank god it’s gone.

I got my boyfriend to help me move a raised bed a few weeks ago, and I haphazardly planted some desperate seeds and herbs. Really, the winter garden is pretty pathetic. I’ll be lucky if I get a salad out of it. But, I have a fresh new canvas to work from come January.

Today, I am thankful for five hours of uninterrupted backyard time. All of the following projects got finished:

• woman shed expanded and organized.

• solution to chickens escaping the coop completed. We’ll see tomorrow if I’ve screened them in successfully.

• coop cleaned.

• new food delivery system in place.

• hammock moved to new locale; tables moved to better spots.

• raking, sweeping, hosing down of concrete and “lawn.”

Here are the new and improved pictures of the backyard. Yay Thanksgiving break!

Expanded Woman Shed.

New fence and cleaned up yard.

Side view…hammock moved.

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