Sunday, August 23, 2009

Blueberry SCORE!

You have to love Craigslist. We've been trolling the Farm & Garden section for useful deals, and did we ever score this weekend. We've been in the market for a new chicken, but have been considering the likelihood that a single one would get bullied by our existing two, so we've thought about getting another two instead for a total of four. This morning we found a listing for several pullets about the age of our own, different breeds, with home delivery. And at the going rate for a chicken we'd have to drive out and get! Needless to say, we called. Tomorrow our two Ameraucanas will be joined by a Wyandotte and a Rhode Island Red about their same age. Both those breeds lay brown eggs, so we'll have half brown and half green in the egg basket. Sounds fun!

Our current girls, Doris Day and Lucille Ball, have been giving us lovely perfect eggs with thick shells and delicious flavor. I hope all four hens get along well and the new girls turn out to be as healthy, friendly, and productive as Lucy and Doris. Fingers crossed.

Anyway, the bigger deal of the weekend was a massive blueberry score. Someone out in the wine country was unloading a surplus of bushes from his blueberry farm, selling productive two-year-old blueberry plants for $5 each! They typically retail for about fifty bucks so even with a three-hour drive round-trip it was an absolute steal. We got two different varieties, five plants total, and plan to put them on the north end of our front yard as a hedgerow. When mature they'll grow four to six feet tall and each one will give us 10-12 pounds of blueberries per year. One variety we got is an early producer and the other a late one, so we'll have a nice long blueberry season in the summers ahead.

Got a canning agenda for tonight and tomorrow, putting away salsa verde from my garden as well as ginger-peach jam and the tomato chile jam from FabFrugalFood. And, of course, back to writing. Keith's nipping down to L.A. for a short job this week, so I'm going to try to get us a bit more settled in while he's gone and also get moving on my own work.

It's hard though, this feeling like summer is ending right when we're in a position to really enjoy it. This morning we saw the first bluejay, which around here is an indicator of early spring or late summer, and then at the farmer's market there were (gasp!) apples and acorn squashes. Yep, autumn is definitely just around the corner! But we're holding it off for a bit longer...

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