Building a Whizbang Tub-Style Chicken Plucker

If you've ever processed a bird at home, I'm sure you agree: the de-feathering process can be time-consuming, messy pain in the ass. Even though at time of writing, I've processed a relatively small number of birds, I still cringe at the thought of plucking one more chicken by hand. Or, almost as bad, having to clean up the feather storm from our "Power Plucker" ...
Read More

Keeping Bourbon Red Turkeys

When planning our farm, the thought of sitting down to lunch with a fresh roast heritage turkey sandwich or celebrating a holiday feast with a tasty home-raised bird was too good to pass up. In addition to keeping chickens on our little homestead, we decided to raise turkey. There are many breeds of turkey to choose from, so picking the type we wanted was a lot of fun...
Read More

How To Grow HOTTER Jalepeños This Year

Genetics plays the biggest part of how a pepper will taste, but did you know that the way you grow your plants also effects how they taste? We didn't. Last year we grew jalepeño peppers because, well, we love spicy food. We grew them with compost, plenty of water, everything a plant could want. They grew huge! Of course, I was thrilled... that is until we tasted them. Th...
Read More

Raising the Cornish Rock Meat Chicken (There, we did it – won’t do it again)

We started keeping chickens after one of those quick trips to TSC during their "Chick Days" a couple years back. Typical, I know, but it wasn't without research. Before we bought our first chicks I did tons of research. I devoured every "Complete Chicken Guide" and "Top 10 Chicken Tips" article I could find - watched every chicken how-to on YouTube. I read a...
Read More

Making room for a new fridge

The refrigerator that came with our house was, for a long time a detriment to our way of life. There was a weird condensation leak that I needed to put a dish under, the freezer was on top and it was tiny. Last June 13 (2015), we pulled the trigger on prepping the kitchen for a new refrigerator. When the house was built in 1956, I’m sure the tiny refrigerator was sufficient. W...
Read More

Get rid of ants overnight – Pinterest FTW!

Trying to make things you see on Pinterest can be pretty hit or miss. There are lots of interesting ideas for pest control, and most of them look really good - take a look at our 'Pest Control' board for yourself. .gallery-slider { overflow: hidden; width: 800px; height: 450px; } #gallery-1 { overflow: visible } #gallery-1 .gallery-thumbs ul, #gallery-1 .gallery-thumbs ul ...
Read More

Keeping The ‘American Bresse’ (a.k.a. Bresse Gauloise)

The Bresse Gauloise is a French heritage breed of chicken, world-renowned for it's flavor. Described as "the queen of chicken and the chicken of kings". The finishing method practiced by it's producers is said to create a fat-marbled muscle, similar to wagyu beef. Although known for their meat, hens are highly productive layers of large cream colored eggs. For tho...
Read More

Growing protein: keeping chickens for meat

Reality check time! When we started to think about raising poultry, I had the misconception that a chicken is a chicken is a chicken. They come in different colors but it's the same bird, right? LOL. There are many many breeds of chicken each with different traits. I've since learned that the modern meat chicken, sometimes called a "broiler" or "cornish x", is...
Read More

Fodder Update: Adding clover sprouts

We recently started growing fodder, or sprouted seeds, to supplement the feed for our chickens and turkeys. Its been going well so far, and the results have been very rewarding. Every morning I pull out 6 lbs of fresh sprouted grains to feed our birds, and in return egg quality has gotten noticeably better. Yolks seem to be richer in color, and the whites are denser and les...
Read More

Homegrown squash, now what?

This summer, we grew gourds for the first time! We went with Baby Butternut, Jack O' Lantern Pumpkins and Cucumbers. The cucumbers were prolific and we had lots of fun with them (Spicy IPA Pickles). The Pumpkins were a bit harder. They got a bad case of Powdery Mildew, we did however get 2 or 3 pretty nice ones. Now, the Baby Butternut... it was wonderful. Or is! We should stil...
Read More