Today was a very productive day! The Troutman contingent of the family came and helped us work on several of our projects and tasks.

Emmett fertilized the trees and bushes, transferred dead leaves to the new garden bed, helped with weeding the greenhouse, and pressure washed most of the house. Ivan mowed the yard, washed the chicken food storage bin, and moved even more leaves to the garden bed. Oscar re-fenced the dog’s yard. (Funny story: for ten years, I’ve use two-foot-high plastic garden fencing to keep the dogs in their potty area. Not once did they realize they, technically, could get over that silly fence.) This time, Oscar wanted the fence to be classier, so he used chicken wire (snicker–we sure are some fancy people).

Jessica cleaned out the weeds that had taken over several of the greenhouse planters.

The greenhouse is ready for planting!

Jessica and I laid a new area of landscaping cloth in front of the greenhouse and set out some concrete blocks I had purchased a few weeks ago. Then, the five of us shifted the IBC tote to those blocks.

Water collection and irrigation

I acquired this IBC tote last year (see the post about that by clicking HERE). The intention always has been to use it to capture rainwater for irrigating the garden. It took some time to get the proper connections and a large funnel with filter to capture rain and a cover to protect the water in the tank from algae growth. Once all those things were acquired, we were unable to move the tote by ourselves. We definitely took advantage of the extra manpower that was available today. Hopefully we will get enough rain over the next weeks and months to keep this tank filled. If so, we won’t have to draw as much on the well to water the gardens.

After doing all that and more, everyone is definitely tired. I am very happy with what was accomplished.

There was a bit of excitement in the day also.

As Jessica and I were clearing the area to be covered with landscape material, we were surprised by a baby snake. Thinking it was a copperhead (it’s hatching season for them), it was dispatched. (Yes, there was squealing involved.)

We tossed the snake body into the chicken run and the fun began! The lucky hen to grab the snake had to keep on the run or the others would steal it from her. It was quite humorous to watch.

When we found a second baby snake to give to the chickens, the chasing hens couldn’t decide which of the “holding” hens to chase. Chaos reigned until, finally, Eager managed to catch enough of a break from the chasers to slurp her prize down like a spaghetti noodle! This distracted the others enough that the second lucky hen could sneak off and finish her treat.

I wasn’t able to get a picture of the entertainment but here’s one from the internet
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