The “Duh” Vignettes, Edition One: The Grass Is Always Greener

A friend recently asked me if our girls’ eggs taste immensely different from store-bought eggs. To be honest, they don’t.

Wait, what? No, really. Don’t get me wrong – they taste fantastic, and they are about as fresh as you can get. They are also a lot stronger-shelled than store-bought eggs, and we often have to use a butter knife to break through the inner layer once we’ve cracked the shell.

Maybe it’s the fact that we have typically bought “higher end” eggs and not the 69 cent/dozen ones in the white Styrofoam containers. Maybe it’s because the chickens haven’t really been free ranging as much since the weather got colder. Who knows.

Anyway, this conversation got me thinking about fresh food for the chickens during the winter. I’ve been feeding them the pulp from my juicer, which they love, but how could I get them free range goodness without having to freeze my ass off supervising them in the open air?

Then it hit me, my greatest “duh” moment of late: open your eyes, girlfriend, and look at what’s right in front of you!

20121214. Cover crops as chicken snacks.

DUH! Green stuff everywhere!

We planted winter rye this year as a cover crop in a couple of beds, just for kicks. A local farmer was telling me that, in the spring, I’ll likely need to cut it back before turning it under, it grows so voraciously. Or, instead, I could use it as a tasty green thing to supplement the chickens’ diet all winter long.

20121214. Cover crops as chicken snacks.

Say it with me: DUH.

20121214. Cover crops as chicken snacks.

The chickens are not complaining about my recent discovery, although they did seem a little ruffled it took me so long.

In other news, we are trying to get into the holiday spirit over here at Space-Farms. For a variety of reasons, this season has been fairly stressful and a tad devoid of holiday cheer.

However, we both get over a week of much-needed time off work starting December 24, and I think the break alone will give us time to think, enjoy life, and maybe start considering some plans for the future.

20121208. Boombox hates everyone when we put the antlers on him.

Boombox is in the spirit!

20121215. We had an extra card and couldn't figure out who to send it to.

What should one do when one has an extra Christmas card and no more people to send it to in his/her address book? Why, Google “White House address,” of course! I hear Michelle has a thing for chickens.

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6 thoughts on “The “Duh” Vignettes, Edition One: The Grass Is Always Greener

  1. haha! Boombox does not look in the spirit! I’ve been reading about sprouts for chickens in the winter but need to find the seed in bulk at a reasonable price. They can subsist on Layena until spring if I don’t. Still waiting for an egg…..

    • Come on, chickens, get on with it already! Remind me, when did you get your girls/how old are they now? To be honest, I really didn’t think we’d see our first egg until the spring, what with the dark days. The two girls who are laying are doing so like CHAMPS, though – they’ve laid 24 eggs so far this month between the two of ’em!

      Boombox hates it when we put that thing on him. He sits perfectly still, looking totally dejected until we take it off him. Good kitty! 🙂

      • The “rescue” hen, Victoria, is >1 yr old. her previous owner said she was laying. Got her on 9/2/12 along with the 4 week old Australorps. I’m thinking we’ll see eggs in late Jan from the younger ones.

    • Beaker, our one girl left over from the initial four that we raised from day-old chicks, still isn’t laying. It starts raising the question of whether we will allow for non-producers in the flock, which I’m sure you’ve started considering. Girlfriend survived 108-degree temperatures and is the sweetest damn chicken ever… but she’s not laid an egg yet, and we know she was born March 19. Sooo… what to do, what to do? Sigh.

    • You know, I have noticed that the yolks taste pretty phenomenal. Maybe they just needed some time to get their groove on before I started assessing the overall value of their product! What a Judgey McJudgerson I am, the poor girls.

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