Sunday, June 8, 2014

The Tell-Tale Crow

 A couple of weeks ago I ventured out to my field, I mean garden, to put in the first round of green bean seeds. I bought a pound of green bean seeds (Blue Lake Bush beans...the only ones I'll ever grow!) with the intent of selling them by the bushel to my grandparent's farm later this summer. At least the ones I don't can since I didn't can many last year as we are still eating beans from 2012.

 Anyhoo, it was later in the afternoon before I could get outside while Carl took his nap. It was hot, muggy and thunder could be heard in the distance. I was humming Wouldn't It Nice as I loaded up the seed planter and dropped the bar into the dirt to mark off my rows. I gave the seeder a push and watched closely as the kidney shaped seeds dropped into the row before being covered with dirt again. A thrill of excitement coursed through my veins for two reasons:

1.) Using the seeder is 100 times easier to plant a garden with versus making a furrow with a hoe, dropping in the seeds (making sure they make solid contact with the dirt, as it helps with the growing process, as per Dan's advice) and then taking the hoe and closing over the furrow. The only benefit to this planting method as far as I can see is that it provides a good ab workout. Using the seeder gets the job done in minutes; and

2.) A few days before I planted beans I had tried to use the seeder to plant my corn by for whatever it wasn't working. I spent over a hour in the muggy sunshine fighting it. I'd load the seeder, push it through the dirt, and not see any seeds dropping in because they were backing up in the tube they go down before landing in the dirt. I probably loaded that seeder up 4 or 5 times, dumping corn into my yard (I'm sure I'll get a few stray corn stalks in unwanted places), banging the thing on the ground (sorry Mike!) and shoving scissors and drill bits through it to unclog whatever was keeping the seeds from dropping through. At last my time was up, the baby monitor told me so, and I had nothing in the ground to show for my hard work. Of course the dumb thing worked for Dan when he got home and made me out to be a liar.

Back to pushing the device through the dirt, waddling along like I was pregnant again because I'm looking down at the seeds and not thinking I can actually step on the rows, nor am I looking where I'm going, so now I have crocked rows, singing in my mind, "Wouldn't it be nice if we could wake up, in the morning when the day is new..."

 Out of the heavy air, I heard a strange noise. I had to hear it several times since I didn't really notice it at first. I wasn't expecting it. A strangled, alien-like sound. Like a sick animal. I made it to the end of one of my bean rows and I looked towards the barn. The creepy noise came again.

 Wait a second! I thought to myself, interrupting Brian Wilson's falsetto. I've heard that noise can mean only one thing. We have a new rooster! My shoulders sagged in disappointment. Are ever going to get a group of chicks and NOT get a male in a package that promises all females? Four years in a row we've obtained at least one rooster from the new flock.

 Dan and I had had our suspicions about an Araucana that looks like a mini-version of Chicken Hawk, so much that I'd tempted to name this rooster "Mini Me". (Though we haven't settled on a name for him yet.) If he's the only rooster we have, I think we'll be ok having two now that my beloved Fumm is gone and lost forever. I do like only having one though, and Chicken Hawk is a great rooster. So far he hasn't gotten mean and he's relatively quiet throughout the day. I want to do some research to see if the Araucana breed is one that has less aggressive roosters.

 It's still too early to tell if this new guy is only rooster from Flock 4. We have had late bloomers ion the past (remember Chaz??) so it won't surprise me if we were to discover weeks from now yet another one. It's also disappointing we will get one less blue egg now...

 Worse than a preteen boy band, it's as if his short comings are displayed to the world for everyone to know, but I really wish everyone could hear a young rooter find his crow. It's truly an awful sound until he gets it perfected.

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