Saturday, 19 March 2011

How to grow your own hens

Dig a trench. Place hens in trench about a foot apart...

Of course I'm joking! These are two of our lovely new Calder Rangers assisting me with the planting of the first early potatoes. The problem was, with their enthusiastic scratching for bugs, they filled the trench in almost as fast as I could dig it. We got it done in the end though.

My next task was clearing the weeds from one of the other beds. I sat on the wooden edge and three of the hens all but sat on my lap so keen were they to grab the first worm.

It's a long time since we've had hens this friendly. The last lot were ex-batts and were too traumatised to be cuddly, although they loved a good chat. These four won't leave me alone when I'm in the garden. They follow my fingers as I weed and lean their fluffy chests forward on to my legs when they scratch at the earth with their feet, all the while encircled by my busy arms. It makes it difficult to see what I'm doing but I don't mind.

I won't leave these charming creatures out loose and unsupervised though - we've lost too many hens to foxes that way - so at 5pm when I have to go in a cook dinner they have to go back into their coop. With previous hens that would have involved chasing and squawking. These four I just pick up and pop back into the run with a few tasty treats as a reward.

Spoilt? You bet they are.


  1. They look and sound like a delightful bunch; no wonder they're spoilt!

  2. How industrious they are! Will they be allowed in the garden when seed have been sown?

  3. You've given me an totally new way to think about hens. Friendly, and appreciative.

    Hoping that you and those hens will be able to keep them safe from neighborhood foxes.

    This is a lovely post! Too many sadness in the international news. I thank you for your news. xo

  4. My, what friendly helpers you have! All you have to do is get them accustomed to weedy plants, and they will be worth their value.

    Just watch out for those Weasels, too.

  5. That's a shame ! I looked at the photo , read the first line and could see it already .
    They've just dug our street up to put in glass fibre cables and I could have got the first batch in tomorrow . Chickens as far as the eye can see .
    But I doubt they'd be as charming as yours ! I'd love to hear their chatter .

  6. What characters, love that they sit on your lap. I am still waiting on our seed potatoes arriving, a bit too early to plant them here yet.


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