Nancy Drew and the Case of Cursed Chicken Tractor

Look at where we are, look at where we started. If we finish this tractor it’ll be a miracle. Add a roof, that will be enough.

It has been a while since my last chicken tractor status update. Mostly because nothing has really happened. Work was already slow due to the heat and then Hurricane Hanna hit Corpus and we were received about two weeks of intermittent rain. At one point it rained so hard that we accumulated four inches of rain in six hours. It finally stopped last weekend on Sunday.

We went out to work on the tractor again and about an hour in, the Fella pulled a muscle in his back. (See why I think this chicken tractor might be cursed?) We are reaching a point where most of the work is ideally a two person job, so we have been in a holding a pattern for this past week. The little girls are comfortable in their temporary home, so finishing it is important, but not critical for their survival. It will definitely make “morning chores” easier, when I have to start reporting to virtual school. Once we finish the tractor, everyone is going to move in together so consolidating chickens means I can feed everyone at the same time in the same place. I’m hoping moving everyone into a new place at once will encourage better flock integration since nobody will have the upper wing.

We have so many other projects in the proverbial pipeline for the autumn. Once the chickens are moved, we are going to take down Fowlsome Prison and give the old coop a clean up and renovation so that it can become a new home for Wendell, the garden bunny.

The space where the chicken coop used to be will soon house four new garden beds, for which I was finally able to obtain materials; the cedar shortage is making some lumber harder to come by. The new beds, which will add another seventy-two square feet of garden space, are going in over Labor Day; just in time for my brassicas and lettuces.

The Fella and I are going to put up the greenhouse my folks bought for my birthday. We are going to do some modifications to make it more personalized; I’m pretty excited to have a place to propagate plants finally.

There are few non-homesteading related projects on the horizon as well; our house needs a little attention. We are going to do some basic landscaping this autumn. We have never had much in the way of grass in our backyard; when we moved in it was mostly a combination of weeds and some grass seed the previous owner had broadcast to make the place presentable. The Texas heat and the hens made short work of this and now we are going to have to have real sod put in. I’m not a big fan of lawns, but you do what you have to when you live in the city. We are also going to do some hard-scaping to deal with some of the trouble spots in the yard. The rainy weekends have been spent working on cleaning out our garage and redesigning our garage storage. We want room for a deep freezer and more workspace for the Fella’s tools. We also want to move the litter boxes out of the utility room and into the garage. This will allow us to use the utility room for more food storage. One of the unexpected side effects of Covid is that it has changed the way we shop and the Modage has always been short on storage. Hopefully these projects will address that issue.

We have some more projects, but those are a surprise that I will reveal later. There are new additions coming to our little backyard homestead (not human) and they will also need accommodations. Stay tuned!