There are some advantages to winter, though. First off, it isn't so doggoned hot. Of course, that probably means it is freezing cold. We do get a few weeks where it is actually nice, though. Maybe one in April, maybe a few in May, a few in September. If we're lucky, a few in October.
Another advantage of winter is that the winds die down, meaning there is less dust in the air. On a cold, clear November night, you can see stars beyond imagination. Those of you who live your lives in the city miss one of the joys of rural life - turning off all the lights and sitting on the porch with a good dog at your feet and counting stars. In November, there are no blood-thirsty bugs to feast on you at night. I think even if you were a hard-core atheist, at a moment like that, you would be tempted to Believe.
Peas were planted two days before the sub-20°F night. So far, none have peaked up from the ground. Perhaps I was too late in planting them? I was hoping for pea vines for the chickies to munch on in winter, even if we didn't get any peas.
Garlic is here and ready to plant out. My living room smells so yummy with the bulbs waiting for me there - waiting for me to
- get off my duff
- build them a cage to protect them from marauding chickens
- put them in the ground
The basil, of course, died with the first 30°F night, but the oregano keeps on as well as the sweet marjoram. Surprisingly, the rosemary also still survives. The tips are a little frost-killed, but I think if I mulch it well, perhaps it will come back in the Spring. Gardeners, I am sure, are eternal optimists. Even after we are dead and buried, there is always Next Spring.
About selling chicken eggs...
Of course, one must count one's eggs before the chickens actually start laying. It's the way it is done! So even though no one is laying yet... with 25 hens, and 2 of 3 laying an egg every day, we could have 18-20 eggs or so during peak season. That could mean that I have 10 dozen eggs a week to sell at the farmer's market. Enough to beak even in cost of driving expenses and almost a weeks worth of chicken feed. An added bonus is that my granddaughter lives in the same town as the little farmer's market that I would attend. So it would just be another excuse to see her every week. Any eggs that didn't sell I could give to my daughter.
But to really make it worth it from a dollar perspective, I think I would need 100 hens... but that is starting to sound like work. I have to remember, the chickens are for therapy and entertainment, not work! ...and maybe I can sell some garlic, too...
With the idea that I might have a very small egg business, here are some resources I have found...on the other hand, I have not been able to find anything useful on the laws that I need to comply with...
- Nevada Grown (http://nevadagrown.com/UserPages/default.aspx)- as they say on their website, "your resource for Nevada’s rich selection of locally-grown food."
- Fallon's Farmer's Market (http://www.fallontourism.com/index/farmers_market.htm) - small town, homey, little tiny farmer's market - I love it!
- Local Food Northern Nevada (http://lfnn.blogspot.com/) - a local blogger on local foods and where to find them in the Reno/Sparks metroplex (hey, for Northern Nevada, it is a "metroplex"...)