How to Attract & Feed Hummingbirds

When the Ruby-throated Hummingbirds arrive in spring, we celebrate at my house. Each year we set up a protected area by our mudroom door and our kitchen window. The hummingbirds always find it and the air above the feeding station is soon filled with hummingbirds zipping around at all hours. It's a joyous site!


7 Tips for Buying Chicks From the Feed Store

Make Sure You're Prepared Before You Get to the Feed Store


For a few months each spring, when you walk into your local feed store, you're greeted to the chorus of tiny chicken chirps as the annual chick season tempts so many shoppers. If you're not sure of where to buy baby chicks, this is a great place to pick up your first flock members or add to your existing flock of backyard chickens. It's local. It's immediate. And it's fun.

Here are some tips to make the process easier on you and your new flock members.

Tips to make buying chicks from the feed store easier on you and your new flock members.


How To Care For A Shamrock Plant

This is the time that shamrock plants are in abundance in stores each March. Should you lay down a few clams and purchase one? Yes! Shamrock plants are worth it for a holiday treat and an easy-to-care-for houseplant that will rebloom again and again. 

Buying a Shamrock plant for St. Patrick's Day gets you a hardy plant that will rebloom again and again.

The first time I purchased shamrock plants, they were for my young kids. Needless to say, the plants were in their bedrooms and they didn't get much care. But never fear, these hardy plants are actually bulbs. The lack of water sent the bulbs into a dormant stage. And once a little TLC resumed, the plants were back in business. Instead of dying, they revived and turned into lush houseplants that have bloomed ever since. 

Chicken Breeds That Lay Blue or Green Eggs

If you're planning your first flock or considering adding some new birds, blue and green egg laying hens ensure you'll have a colorful egg basket all year round and a fun talking point when you give eggs to family and friends.

Blue & Green Egg Myths

Do blue eggs taste different than "regular" eggs? No.

Do blue eggs contain more or less cholesterol than eggs of other colors? No.

Here's why — the quality of an egg's nutrition and an egg's taste is determined by diet.

All eggs are formed in the same way, but the nutrition a hen gets on a daily basis is what gives her egg its taste and gives the yolk its color. If your backyard chickens are fed a quality layer feed and allowed to forage for grasses, insects and anything else they can find, you can be assured your eggs will be fresh and taste good.

If you're planning your first flock or considering adding some new birds, blue and green egg laying hens ensure you'll have a colorful egg basket all year round.
Easter Egger and Cream Legbar Eggs

Baby Chick Health 101

Chick season is fun, but make sure you're prepared to welcome new chicks to your backyard and keep them healthy. Good baby chick health early on gives your birds the building blocks they need to become healthy adults.

Good baby chick health early on gives your birds the building blocks they need to become healthy adults.

The Backstory on Hornet Nests

Bald-Faced Hornet nests have a story to tell. Through most of the year, hornet nests are barely visible tucked in trees with leaves surrounding them. But in winter, hornet nests are easily found and fascinating structures that can be safely explored without fear of repercussion. Around my neck of the woods, bald-faced hornets make beautiful, teardrop-shaped nests that provide a home base for the colony from spring to late fall.

In winter, hornet nests are easily found and fascinating structures that can be safely explored without fear of repercussion. Find out more about these fascinating creatures.

Prebiotics and Probiotics for Chickens 101

Feeding your flock a nutritious and varied diet should include prebiotics and probiotics for chickens. Many commercial feed rations contain prebiotics and probiotics. But what are prebiotics and probiotics? Is there a way to supply them to your flock beyond commercial feed? How do probiotics and prebiotics help backyard chickens?

What are Prebiotics and Probiotics? 


Probiotics are live organisms that live in your intestinal tract and, to put it delicately, keep things cleaned out and flowing well. They also help to strengthen your immune system. They can be found in foods that have live cultures, like sauerkraut, apple cider vinegar, cheese, sour cream and, famously, yogurt. Prebiotics set the stage for probiotics because they are the food for probiotics. Prebiotics are a non-digestible type of plant fiber. Many high-fiber foods are also high in prebiotics.

Feeding your flock a nutritious and varied diet should include prebiotics and probiotics for chickens. Learn how to provide this nutritious supplement for your birds.
The flock enjoying a treat of bananas. (Peels were removed before serving.)
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