Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Using Grandma's Containers for my Flowers

After my grandmother died in 2008, the family began cleaning out the house and distributing her things to family members.  Grandma loved to work in the garden and among her flowers.  I have many plants that she gave me starts of, and I'm also pleased to have these planters and this watering can.  Someone for whom my grandfather worked gave Grandma these cast-iron planters because she no longer wanted them.  I brushed off the flaking paint, painted them black, and filled them with sedum and other plants and put them on the porch.  I think that both they and Grandma are happy that they are being used and enjoyed again.



As we were leaving Grandma's house back in April after we loaded her dining room set on a moving truck bound for St. Louis, I noticed three galvanized watering cans.  My sister lives in St. Louis, and she flew back to help load the truck and drove it back.  We put one can on the truck to St. Louis for my sister, my uncle took one, and I got this one.  I use it regularly; it's just more pleasant and prettier to use than the plastic version.  When I picked these flowers, I used it as a temporary container.  

We all have things in our homes that remind us of people that have passed away.  I especially like to have things that I can actually use.  I have a pair of post-hole diggers that belonged to my grandfather, who died before I was old enough to remember him.  Although I use them infrequently, I imagine him digging the numerous post-holes he must have chiseled into the clay soil of the cow pasture.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Introducing Sir Rose, the Rooster

I've thought about getting a rooster for awhile, but resisted the temptation because I was worried about it being mean to my children and other complications.  

However, when a friend showed up with a rooster in a laundry basket when she came to pick up some filing cabinets I no longer wanted, and asked if I wanted him, I couldn't refuse.  My husband knew the decision was made when he saw me holding the rooster, wrapped in a blanket to keep him calm on the ride over, in my arms.

Sir Rose was Rosie until this morning when he began to crow.  They were about to leave the house this morning when the children heard him crow.  My friend couldn't have a rooster in her neighborhood so she was on the way to give him to her family members, to whom she'd already given another unplanned rooster. Then she remembered that I had chickens, and offered him to me first.  My girls renamed him Sir Rose. Sir Rose has had lots of human attention from my friend's 5 children, so I hope he'll be nice.

I put Sir Rose in the chicken tractor within the pen for his own safety. The chickens need a little time to adjust to this newcomer. When I separated him from the two hens to whom I introduced him, he had a bleeding wattle.  The hens were fine.  Currently, my concern is my hens being nice to the rooster.  My children may learn the true definition of "hen pecked!"

Monday, June 2, 2014

It's been a perfect morning for weeding the garden

I spent 1 1/2 pleasant hours pulling weeds this morning in the garden.  The temperature is in the seventies, which is unusual for June in SC, and the humidity is low.  I crawled around among the fennel, beets, carrots, onions, leeks, and asparagus and pulled several buckets of weeds, which I tossed to the chickens.

The chickens were hiding under the dogwood tree, both to stay out of the sun and to avoid the hawk that sat in a pine tree above their chicken tractor.  I have decided that the hawks in our neighborhood are too full of other prey to bother with the chickens, or else they believe my chickens are too big for them, because they regularly fly over the chickens and I haven't lost any birds to them--yet.  

This hawk was apparently bothering the nest of some smaller bird, because I saw it attacking the hawk as it sat on the branch.  The hawk brushed it away as if it was a pesky fly, and eventually flew away.

Mr. Schultz, my dachshund, joined me in the garden.  He likes to sleep his days away, preferably in my bed, but if I don't allow it, in his dog bed.  He's very picky about the weather he enjoys outside, but temperatures in the seventies are perfect for anyone.

I have lots of articles I need to post--I've neglected my blog lately.  My girls are out of school now and I'll have more free time to do other things.