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Monday, 6 June 2016

Hens, Button & garden...

Ahem, Big Ginger says he is NOT a hen.  Well no, he's a cockerel, obviously.  One of three, sigh. No that was NOT intentional. But one was supposed to be a hen and turned out to be a cockerel and one of last year's chicks was a male.  Hence 3 of them.  They ought to be "dispatched" as I really don't want more chicks, but I can't do it myself and so far no takers....  So I have Big, Medium and Peedie Ginger.....and no, fortunately they don't fight.  A bit of posturing, but with so many hens (about 12)
they kind of have their own little harem.

As I say - their own harem.  Now THIS is why I have to keep the hens OUT of the veg patch....too many dust baths!

The girls strutting their stuff and having a drink too.....

The girls (and boys) love rootling around in the grass and among the garden plants.  They do eat grass (which surprised me), but of course they prefer other things given the chance, so I am usually pursued around the garden in the hope of scraps or seeds or whatever.

And here is Tallulah, she's a Shetland Black hen. Very pretty with a top knot of feathers (hence her exotic name).  She's gone broody today (along with 3 others) so she'll be in hiding for about 3 weeks now. Sigh...

Now to the garden.... yes the fence is still keeping the hens (and Button) OUT! Hooray! The slugs got various tender plants (if it's not one thing it's another!) so I'm now trying pots for some runner beans, and a courgette.  Strawberries too as the strawberry patch is rather full.

The courgette is in flower!

And look! Gooseberries!  First time in YEARS I have had gooseberries as the hens loved them when they were tiny little berries and would scoff the lot! Jumping up to nip them off the branches despite some prickly branches.  Cheeky hens! These are tiny I know but in a few weeks....whoo hoo - gooseberry crumble?

Here are peas and broad beans.  In Orkney it's unwise to plant out tender plants much before May so these are still quite small but they are growing quickly now the sun is out and the ground has warmed up!

I think the hens are still plotting how to get into the veg patch though....

Now this wee patch has been sown with wildflower seeds to attract bees and other insects.  Coming along not too badly.  It will be interesting to see what grows!

And here is the strawberry patch coming along nicely too. Flowers out and lots of growth.  I'll need to cover them once they start to fruit as these are outside the fenced off bit.  But I usually get a reasonable crop.

And where is Button I hear you ask?  Well she's snoozing on top of the compost heap of course! Warmth above and below!

She does come for a wander to see what I'm doing. But won't always pose for a photo. Ha!

Let's try again.....

Nope.... I'll give up then..... spot the contrary cat in this!

One thing is for sure, we all love the sunny warm days!


  1. You are certainly doing better than us, we have yet to see a bit of sun.

  2. Button- the most famous cat in blogging history! Warm regards, Mark.

  3. Well Sian, life on that small island of yours couldn't be more fascinating, no wonder I love islands!!! Thank you for this hilarious and charming fabel, on this sunny day that actually is Swedens Nationalday complete with flags and banners and anthems sung by a multitude of choirs in every corner of the country and folkloredressed dancers in the square. Our hens couldn't care less of course.

  4. Such a great post and lovely photos. Warm greetings from Montreal, Canada. :)