The end of July is speeding toward us and here at the My Edible Yard Urban Homestead that means it's time to ready the garden beds for planting in September with as much composted manure as we can get our hands on. The more compost we incorporate into the soil, the healthier the soil will be and, Mother Nature be willing, the healthier our vegetable plants will be, hopefully leading to higher produce volumes.
But with the all-encompassing lazy heat of the summer, it's been hard to even think about working in the backyard garden this year. So I haven't. I've concentrated on keeping the front yard beds presentable to the neighbors, trying to outsmart the heat by doing my weeding, watering, and harvesting either in the early morning or early evening hours.
As I forced myself this past weekend to start planning my attack on the backyard, it dawned on me that I've got help this year. The chickens. I don't have to do it by myself or even coerce my husband into doing it for me. All I have to do is let the chickens loose to do what they do best. Scratch, poop and forage. And they've joyfully obliged me. They have successfully fertilized all the backyard beds, dutifully uprooted weeds, and aerated the soil. Now all I have to do is lay down a thick layer of composted manure and let the girls do their thing.
|Backyard chickens hard at work.|
They've just started on the bed in the back.
|I think they noticed the camera.|
|Chickens at work.|
|A chicken-finished bed. Just a few stray weeds for me to pull.|