Spring Projects: Planning for Laying Hens and Installing a Garden

| 4/15/2010 11:28:00 AM

A portrait of GRIT Assistant Editor Caleb Regan, with a puny catch.Spring is here, and as the seasons go, it doesn’t get much better than this. This particular season has been very exciting for my fiancé and me, as we have a couple of new spring projects that have commanded our attention on top of trying to plan a December wedding.

First and foremost – at least in prioritizing our obligation and energy – we’ll be getting chickens here in a week or two. It’ll be the first time we’ve kept chickens together, and after some painless and even fun convincing, my future wife is onboard with the project.

The key was getting our little coop and run set up; after she saw the nifty GardenEggs.com Little Egg Chicken Tractor, she was excited about the prospect of keeping chickens, and even wanted to raise them from day-old chicks so that we wouldn’t miss out on that part of the process. I think I picked a good one.

Once the basic construction was finished – a perfect 2-hour Saturday project, I might add, for me and a buddy with the grill going and a cold beverage – it was time to paint the coop for waterproofing reasons.

Before construction of the coop. The directions are very clear and easy to follow.

Little Egg Coop, sans wheel and roosting bars, etc.; pretty much we just had the four walls and first attachments on run put together.

michele' preston
4/27/2010 2:50:57 AM

What a great story & i love the fact you painted it so its not the boring coops you see everywhere....Now I am not much into ideas but what about a restroom door with a chicken in a skirt instead of the tipical woman & put "Chicks Only"...I just built a 10'x6' coop & am painting it to look like the old KFC bucket with my rooster head painted on it instead of the colonal. The KFC will stand for either "Krazy fine Chicks" or "Kooky Feathered Club", haven't decided yet which to go with...but my small farm is called The Old Batz Farm so I need something fun for them as well.

Cindy Murphy
4/19/2010 6:49:02 PM

No peace signs or flowers, Caleb? But then you could call it "Chickenstock"....uhm, unless they're not going to pot. Not into the 60's psychedelic scene? How about the beach scene then, and call it "Little Deuce Coop". Don't care for music? How about movies? "A Coop of Their Own"....maybe you haven't seen that one; it's a chick(en) flick. Something more classic? "Feathering Heights" Have a little Irish in you? How 'bout your fiance? Maybe your chickens are Irish. Then call it "The Cluck of the Irish". I should probably quit with the bad puns after that last one, (I probably should have quit after the first). One more though...this one is good, I promise (maybe). Since the coop is an achievement on many levels: you built it yourself, your girlfriend artfully painted it, and you both are in this project as you plan for your life together, how about "Coop de Maître".

S.M.R. Saia
4/16/2010 6:22:05 AM

Good for you! I have found that digging up my own yard with a shovel to garden is a really rewarding experience. I've done a lot of it over the last few years. If I hadn't done that I probably never would have realized how incredibly dense it is with earthworms. I may not have some to be so familiar with my indigenous weeds, and be able to tell when I've stumbled across something whose seed must have blown in from elsewhere. It can be hard work, but somehow seeing what's been done with the tiller isn't as satisfying, and seems kind of sterile by comparison. Good luck with both projects!

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