Last weekend I began the laborious task of yanking weeds from the raised beds to get them ready for planting. One particular weed (I don’t know what it is called but I have several patches of them), shot a shower of seeds ALL over me when I pulled on it. Much like the sensation of someone pulling the string on one of those little plastic champagne poppers and having a shower of confetti falling everywhere. Teeny tiny seeds. Bazillions of them. In. My. Garden. Soil.
Thankfully, I know my hens love to garden. It goes without saying that chickens probably break a world record with the amount of poo they liberally contribute to the world (and therefore my garden). They also love to scratch and explore in the compost bins, helping to turn scraps into dirt. I appreciate this about them, as it took me some time to warm up to this task myself (I’ve turned that around and am no longer a compost loser).
What I wanted to capitalize on, however, was my hen’s love for digging around in my gardens. They have a fantastic time uprooting my vegetables when they escape the backyard and discover a raised bed! Nothing makes them happier.
Knowing the girls fondness for my normally off limites garden spaces (a fact that had me building a fence to separate them from the garden a few years back), I thought up a great plan. THEY could work in the garden, loosen the soil a bit, dig up some weeds, and eat up all those millions of seeds just let loose in my precious soil.
It sounded perfect to me. Garden work would be accomplished, I’d enjoy sitting in the warm spring sun watching them, they’d be happy digging away and I’d get some writing done. What’s not to love about it?
I picked up two hens, carried them into the front yard, and plopped them down in the first garden patch. Like expected, they happily got to work, digging around, eating weeds, seeds and bugs. I stood over them, praising their good work.
But the second I walked away with my notebook to get to writing, they followed me.
I coaxed them back over. They hopped back in and got back to work.
Until I sat down with my notebook, that is. Back over to me they came.
Back and forth we went. From the concrete wall I sat on to the raised beds and back again. I never cracked open my notebook. Not. Even. Once.
Giving up, I walked back to the backyard with my hens in tow and my notebook under my arm. I opened the gate and let them into the chicken yard. So much for a short cut to my spring prep in the gardens! I guess I’m going to have to get to work on them myself. And I will. Soon.