Saturday, July 30, 2011

Which Came First? The Egg or the Nest?

 Last spring we (I say "we," but it was actually hubby who did all of the work and planning) bought a dozen baby chicks, converted the storage shed to a chicken coop, bought a chain link dog run on craigslist. com, and then we waited for our first egg. . . and waited . . . and. . . . I had been telling the chicken master that he needed to get his nesting boxes built or he'd go out to the hen house one day and find eggs all over. He came in the house the other evening and asked me to go with him---and to bring my camera. The nesting boxes had been installed and then he showed me the little brown egg. Indeed when he went to install the nesting boxes, there in the sawdust was this little brown pullet egg.

He fluffed the nests with hay (he says chickens like hay)

and today there was a second egg. 

And then there were two

The hens bring a lot of interest to The Garden Spot. It's fun just to sit and watch them peck and scratch in the dirt and the hay and to listen to them cluck and chatter. Even the dog likes to watch them, though he goes into his bird dog behavior and tries to flush them as though he were out in the field hunting pheasants. 

But not all is right in the Garden Spot

We have some very sick tomatoes. While some are quite healthy and producing, 4 are quite ill. I finally convinced the gardener to pull the worst one out. In doing a bit of research, I 'd say that they have some sort of fungus due perhaps to too much rain? Too much heat? Not disease resistant? Who knows. What a disappointment. The tomato plants were all doing so well this year and now these sick ones. 

And these murderous creatures are back. I wrote about them last year. They are called assassin bugs. They sit on flower heads waiting for unsuspecting bees and butterflies to land on the flower seeking a quick bite; instead, they are bitten by the assassin, injected with venom and killed. While there are not as many as there were last year, I so hoping that they wouldn't return. 

What better way to end the day with God's Promise.


  1. Oh no, the late blight! I'm so sorry. We went through the same thing in 2009. Do NOT compost the sick plants! Bag them in plastic and throw they out with the regular garbage- preferably after letting the bag sit in hot sun for a few days first so you don't send your blight to the landfill to spread.

  2. An egg! two eggs! This is exciting! Would the chicken go after those murderous bugs if they are let lose?

    Thanks for the comments. Would it be all right if I convert your comments into captions? I thought it would be fun.

  3. I love the color of those eggs... The natural color is so pretty. I have heard the name assassin bug before, but had no idea how evil they were or why they were called that.

    Thanks for exposing those monsters.

  4. The hens are lovely! I love watching hens potter about the garden, their little squabbles and no matter how many eggs are laid, it is always a thrill to find another.
    I'd never heard of wicked assassin bugs!! How awful!

  5. Now Ann. Why do you have autumn leaves in your blog background? I thought we agreed we'd savor summer? Smile.
    I love your eggs. While I was in Washington, I visited with a dear friend. She also has chickens and she eats two eggs a day and gives the rest away. They are so beautiful! Assassin bugs? YIKES! I don't even want to think about garden pests! How dare they? Your dog is cute!

  6. Mom-go to the garden center and by some sevin. Mix it up and spray-but be sure to read the label because it can be phytotoxic to some plants. I am confident the sevin will work. We use a product called Carbaryl-A.I. is sevin on beetles in trees. We all hate to spray, but sometimes there is no way around it.

    As for the tomato plants, it is definitely the conditions we have had this year. As you saw in my garden I have sick 'mato. Plants struggle with the inconsistent conditions. They like consistency. With veggies and perennials they just show the symptoms/signs sooner than our trees do.

  7. Great looking chicken coop, the girls seem happy.
    I don't like the sound of those assasin bugs, very nasty, but I did enjoy the rainbow.
    Thanks for stopping by.

  8. Ann,
    I thought you might enjoy this post- no F words, I swear!

  9. Sorry to hear about your sick tomatoes. I think gardeners everywhere ran into difficulty getting their plants in this year because of the rain. Now everyone is suffering because of a lack of rain. I love the fact that you ended your post with a picture of rainbow. Beautiful ending to your post.