Home  •  Forum  •  Blogs  •  E-Mail  •  Support Categories
MyCopper Categories Finance Travel Real Estate Games Autos Entertainment
Certified organic poultry farmer in SE Mass

Father's Day & Solstice
Today it rained, hard. We need the rain since we have had little this month. May was almost totally dry except for the 31st, when it rained hard again. So much, the total for the month of May was almost "normal". Unfortunately, after the end of May rain, June came on dry and windy for several days, taking with it all the moisture. The gypsy & winter moths hatched at the same time, first time in history. Trees are devastated, leafless and their frass has covered the ground. So much, it is slippery under the trees where these larvae live. It will be very humid for the next week, temps will be right up there, too. I sprayed for mosquitoes in the coops and under the duck house and farm stand. I use Garlic Barrier in the one gallon container. One ounce to a gallon of water chases the mosquitoes out for about 7 - 10 days. Spraying under the eaves and exposed rafters on the coops keeps the hornets from building and will actually chase them off their already built nests and they don't come back. You can spray trees for the moth larvae and it will chase them off, too. The larvae are so hungry, they are now eating White Pine trees and other conifers since they have eaten all the other leaves. I did spray with bt. last week and that has started the virus to spread...the virus that kills the larvae. But many of the gypsy larvae are now going into morph...and I am feeding them to the this chickens.

Three weeks ago, a broody Dominique hatched 5 poults (baby turkeys) and three Dominique chix. They have doubled in size and are wandering around the poultry yard under the watchful eye of their momma. The first afternoon I let them out into their fenced area, a woodchuck got inside the fence. Momma hen, fiercely defending her babies, gave that woodchuck a bloody nose! He got out quickly, but is still at large in the big fenced area. I can tell when he is out of his hole by the sound of the chickens clucking.

As I came back from the farm this afternoon, I saw my brother-in-law driving his pick up truck into the feed & grain store down the street from my farm. He was towing a trailer, the kind you would have snowmobiles in. I bet he and my sister came to see what my mother's place looks like with all the improvements. I can only hope they don't know or figure out where I live now, in my small camper. I don't want to see any of my mother's daughters. They were wicked to me over the years when my mom was so sick and I was pretty much her main care-giver. Since I lived just down the street and was available for her when mom needed me, I pretty much cleaned up after my sister when she came with all her foster kids and they tore mom's place up.

Anyway, I feel that I should have gone to my father's resting place today, but the traffic to the cape would have been brutal. My mom is with him at the National Cemetery at Camp Edward in Otis, MA.

I hope all had a good Father's Day and I want to put it out that I thought of my parents today. I think of my mom every day...still talk to her when I hear her nagging in my mind that I should "do it this way"...
June 8, 2015
June has arrived along with millions of Winter & Gypsy Moth larvae. Many trees are bare, the hickorys have suffered the worst damage, oaks are pretty bare, too. Maples have suffered. The frass from the larvae is everywhere, staining cars, cement walks, covering chairs, picnic tables & benches. Sometimes, it sounds like it is raining but the sun is out, not a cloud in the sky. Then you realize it is the frass dropping to the ground...and on your head.

Governments are totally ignorant of the repercussions of this devastation. The large trees may not recover, the smaller ones will, only to be set upon by the next hatch of Gypsy Moth larvae. Are those in "control
" ignorant or just stupid? When the trees die, we die. California is sinking because of all the underground aquifers that have been drained.Tornadoes and floods rage in the plains and southwest. Texas is under water while California is blowing away from drought. One benefit of the drought is many Californians are digging up their lawns and replacing their dead grass with more climate specific plantings. Instead of trees, they are planting cactus. Cities and towns are regulating water consumption...FINALLY! Someone is paying attention!

For the second year, I have not had to dead-head my spring bulbs. No pollination. Today, I did visit the Iris. No seed pods forming on them either. No bees! No fruit on my small fruiting trees, the trees that the Cedar Waxwings come to visit, passing the small, orange fruit down a line of birds until the last bird in the row has his berry.

The only trees and shrubs that are not of interest to the moth larvae are the Red-twig Dogwood, the Mulberry trees and the High Bush Cranberries. But these will not have any fruit for the birds, either. NO BEES! I saw two very hard working Bumble bees on the Comfrey blossoms yesterday. But only two when normally, there would be 50 or more, all buzzing into the bell-shaped blooms.

Our world is collapsing and the President and his cabinet are talking bout ISIS and how to fight that war. We have a war on our continent and they are oblivious.

You might say these are the things that occupy my mind at this time.

Even tho' I swore I wouldn't do it, I did. I set a broody hen on 6 Narraganset turkey and 5 Dominique eggs, turkey eggs under the hen for 7 days, then slipped the Dom eggs under the hen so they would all hatch at the same time. One turkey egg was a dud, two of the Dom eggs were duds. On June 3rd, one turkey and one Dom egg hatched, by June 4th, all had hatched. It was very cool two nights in a row, so I delayed putting the broody and clutch of assorted babies out till June 6 AM. It was sunny, but not really hot...and the transfer went well. At five days of age, they are all thriving. I am feeding them chick starter and hard cooked eggs. They LOVE the eggs! Even the poults (baby turkeys) are gobbling them down. Today, they got their first taste of organic lettuce, courtesy of Lucky Field Organics in Rochester.

I sold the pair of Narraganset turkeys (that the fat man threw out last August) to a newly situated farmer in Taunton. He took 20 eggs the hen turkey had laid and she should hatch these eggs in about 4 - 5 days. He will take the 5 poults hatched by my broody hen when she leaves her clutch for the big hen house. That normally happens in about 5 - 7 weeks after hatching. I will keep the Doms for my friend who is taking all my Dominique layers.

I have 14 Dominique layers and one rooster...and three chix. So, 18 chickens. Only 8 ducks for I sold Sir Walter Drake some time back. I have heard from his new owner and he is a happy drake and is much loved.

My attorney called me and told me that the judge had appointed a commissioner to sell my co-owned property last SEPTEMBER! We had heard NOTHING from Probate court, as a matter of fact, we had a court date with the judge on October 14, 2014 and she didn't mention that she had appointed a commissioner! My attorney has been calling probate court every other week, asking about the judge's decision, but there was NOTHING!!!  Their excuse was the court order appointing the commissioner got put into a bin and misplaced...for EIGHT MONTHS!!! The time is NOW to sell, not next winter!!! Anyway, I am hoping all will be worked out by the end of June and the property will go on the market before July 15. Then I can get the hell out of here!

I still have my 8 Muscovy ducks and am selling eggs. I should have made up a flyer for the grain store to sell them, I went today for grain. I always think of it AFTER I am at the store. If I had a brain, I would be dangerous!

For the past 8 - 9 weeks, I have been working on digging & flame weeding the wild asters that have overtaken my pasture area. It is tedious work, many new sprouting asters have covered bare areas. The chickens killed all the clover that survived the winter because asters have taken over most of the pasture and there was little clover left. So, dig out the bad, turn the earth, add some minerals and seed. I am planting three different clovers, Dutch White, Medium Red and a Yellow clover along with Alfalfa and oats for a nurse crop. May was so dry, I was irrigating the struggling sprouts. But it is growing now...as are any asters I haven't gotten to yet. The small High Bush Cranberry whips planted last spring suffered from snow damage and probably turkey jumping over the fence and on them damage, but they are growing strong. The Maximillion perennial sunflowers planted last spring along the fence are growing as is the Milkweed I have allowed to grow. So is the Mothewort...so invasive and strong. I also have a nice invasion of Bindweed in one corner. I am using the Dragon Flame Weeder when weather permits. The wind here is pretty variable and sometimes blows for days, preventing any flame weeding. That's when the garden fork comes out and I dig. And dig some more!

It was nice to see that someone is reading this blog. For awhile, I thought I was sharing my life and thoughts with the wind. Thanks for reading!