May 18, 2005

By now, the neighbor’s rooster has met its maker. Sunday I returned from a visit with friends and family, to find scattered hay and damaged plants for the nth time. The culprit has been a handsome but tenacious fowl which always ran away to the northwest when pursued. I decided to try to find the owners, since it was a matter of time before he scratched a patch of heirloom plants to death (and then I go ballistic). They were very nice about the whole thing, and I’m pretty sure the rooster had a generally nice life. The owners raise Bashkir curly horses, which I had never heard of before. I got lots of feedback on some of my ideas for the property, which helped a lot. This man sure knew about almonds! *sigh* so much for that idea….back to pondering specialty crops.

We couldn’t burn the field due to the west wind on Sunday, and will keep trying to take advantage of favorable conditions toward the weekend. I planted the cucumbers, and more cucumbers, and some sunflower and zinnia seeds. I finally read about harvesting potatoes, it seems that from "flowers until the top dies" is all fair game for eating potatoes. Suddenly I live in fear of unmanageable crates of potatoes, waiting to be eaten.

The turkey chicks now have a "play yard" where they can get out a little bit. It’s screened in with some plastic mesh of which we have yards and yards. Unfortunately, the setup is hokey, so it can only be used when we are home to supervise the chicks. The stupidest animals always display genius when it comes to getting themselves hurt or killed.

I found an inch of what may have been fireblight on my quince tree. I will be watching it like a hawk for the next several weeks; this mild rainy weather favors that evil bacteria. No one should ever have to watch their tree wither from fireblight. I haven’t gone out to look at the cherries, it’s too depressing. They probably all split from the rain.

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