The tiny green leaves have barely broken the surface. Rich black potting soil still sits on the baby leaves like a top hat. So much hope! Gardening offers such great rewards. These basil seeds have only been in that rich soil for a short time and yet I have so many plans for them.
I can already picture myself heading out to the garden, the sun to my back, a basket in one hand to gather the day’s rewards. The plants covered with droplets of water from that afternoon’s rain and the air has that wonderful earthy and clean scent from a fresh fallen shower. Oh the possibilities once I return to the house. Will it be pesto and homemade egg noodles? How about tomato sauce with that fresh basil and some garlic atop ricotta stuffed ravioli? Or better yet slices of vine-ripened tomatoes stacked on top of mozzarella freshly made that morning and sprinkled with basil? The tomatoes are currently nestled snuggly in the windowsill next door to the basil. My mouth is salivating just thinking of these yummy creations.
While a kind family member came and tilled our garden last week I have yet to plant anything outside. Our weather has been anything but ideal. I fear that if I put something in the ground now it would just rot or wash away with the inches of rain that we’ve received. The weeds are trying to stake their claim on that freshly tilled earth, but I will be out there soon, garden hoe in hand to wage war on those weeds and make a happy home for all of my lovely vegetables.
Along with hatching chicks, we are enjoying many of the other miraculous signs of spring. I captured these beautiful peach blossoms one morning last week. I just love all of the bright colors- pink, green, blue. Spring is definitely in full blossom.
This post is slightly delayed due to Internet issues, but we will soon have that resolved and will be attempting to post daily.
After only 20 days of incubating, our first chicks arrived on Tuesday April 5, 2011- one day early. We were upstairs working and suddenly started hearing some faint cheeping noises. I hadn’t turned the eggs since Sunday so I had no idea what they looked like, and since this was my first time incubating I wasn’t even sure if I’d have any luck. The kids and I peeked in the incubator and sure enough there were 2 little chicks in there. We quickly closed the lid so that they could stay warm, but that was a truly exciting moment.
We ended up with 21 hatching out of the 25 that we incubated. They started hatching that Tuesday morning, and the last one arrived Thursday in the afternoon. Since our hens and roosters are various breeds, our chicks are an assortment of colors and we don’t really know what we’ll end up with. They are staying toasty warm under a heat lamp in the bottom half of a dog kennel (don’t worry, the dog isn’t using it right now). We change their water twice a day, and have been feeding them frequently (their appetite was minimal at first but has now picked up).
They all seem to be doing well, and we’re hoping that we have a good ratio of hens and roosters. Our plan is to keep the hens for laying and the roosters will turn into some tasty meals in a few months.
Here are pictures when they were 1 day and 6 days old:
As you can see they are already getting their wing feathers.