Saturday, November 8, 2008

Here chick...chick...chick!

The gardens are just about ready for winter. I have to do my yearly leaf gathering run through town soon to pick up fall leaves people have raked and left outside for the trash. Those go over my beds for winter (beautiful leaf blankies) and into the compost pile to make some awesome spring compost. I'm also considering making my own leaf mold. I've read that if you add just a bit of water to leaves in a black trash bag and leave them sealed until'll open them up to find leaf mold. Another garden additive that would benefit my terrible clay soil...all for free! I also love that I'm keeping these leaves out of the landfills...what a waste!

Aside from knitting, I'm doing research this winter. I hope to add a small flock of chickens (4-6 lovely ladies) to the OAH in the spring. While I love the "Easter Egg" layers, I need chickens that will give the most eggs dependably. I also love the speckled eggs, but can't seem to find which chickens lay those. Anyone have suggestions?

Here's what I've got so far:
Rhode Island Reds McMurray Hatchery claims that these are the best layers.
Dominiques A friend who has these says they are supposed to lay dependably through the winter...though the website doesn't say anything about that. This is her first year with her chickens, so I'll look forward to hearing if this holds true.
White Rocks These are classified as "heavy chickens." I wasn't really looking to go with larger breeds; however, they are supposed to lay through the winter.

I'm also looking for the perfect coop or chicken tractor. I'd like to have it built in early spring...maybe April or so.


Cynthia said...

It is good to see you blogging again! :) I too, am knitting up a storm right now while our wet Pacific Northwest weather keeps me indoors where it is nice and warm and dry!

The Hills said...

Yay for eggs! Josh wants easter eggs too, but I won't let him go for the lower producer ;-)

Our red sex links are a cross between the rhode island red and white rock and have produced well for us (though our climate is a bit different than yours). I feel like our black sex links have produced better---during the summer both breeds laid an egg a day for us, but the blacks started up sooner and have kept laying reliably longer (now that the days are shorter). We are still getting 3 eggs a day here (from 5 chickens)---sunlight from about 7 until 6:30 or so, temps in 70's during the day, 40's at night.

eb said...

I have found that barred rocks are not the nices hens with children. On the other hand buff orphingtons are very good with kids. We love our Buffy, and Henny Penny. We have chicken tractors from Easy-Garden. No maintenance. Easy to move and can be kept going all winter in most climates. Nest boxes and feeder are on the outside so nest boxes can be cleaned and eggs gathered easily. Feeder can be filled from outside. Check them out at Larger and small yard sizes available.

Nancy M. said...

My Easter Eggers lay me a blue egg almost every single day. They started laying before some of the rest of the hens I have. I love all my chickens!