Day 25: How to Clip Your Chicken’s Wings

Should you clip chicken wings

First, Should You Clip or Not?

It can be a dilemma for many backyard chicken owners – To clip or not to clip their chicken’s wings. The answer is that you don’t need to do it unless your chickens are getting into trouble by flying over fences or restricted areas. In that case, clipping the wings can keep them safe and your garden intact.

The idea behind clipping is that it prevents your chickens from being able to get lift when trying to fly. Granted, a chicken doesn’t fly much anyway because their body mass prevents them (in most cases) from getting more than a few feet off the ground. But lighter breeds can fly over six feet high. And even within the heavier breeds, you can always have a few birds with enough determination and wing strength to get high off the ground.

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FAQs about Backyard Chickens

Chicken Coop at Living Homegrown

My current chicken coop

As an urban homesteader who owns city chickens, I get asked a lot of questions about the care and maintenance of my flock. I’ve noticed that I get the same questions over and over, so I thought today’s post in the 31 days of Homegrown Inspiration and Resource information should address some of those questions.

Here we go…

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Day 23 – Mastering the DIY Garden Project

Wow – That short break from the daily posts was invigorating! I spent a week up in Northern California pruning all the fruit trees on the farmstead and the hard, physical work did me good. I will write more on the heirloom orchard restoration in another post. But first…Back to our 31 Days of Living Homegrown Project.

Today’s post is all about learning from a Master DIY-er.

As homesteaders, hobby farmers and gardeners, we know that DIY projects are not only fun, but they save us money. You get the satisfaction of accomplishment and a finished product that you just can’t find in your local store!

Garden Therapy:

If you are into DIY, then you need to meet Stephanie Rose. Her website Garden Therapy, is all about DIY garden projects, yummy recipes and crafty goodness.

Stephanie Rose of “Garden Therapy”

I have “known” Stephanie online for a few years now and I have found her to be very sweet and giving of information. Her projects are spot on and actually work! In fact, if you have a DIY pin board on Pinterest, you probably already have a few of her projects pinned there.

This girl is crafty! She posts 2-3 projects a week and the step-by-step instructions are simple, timely and always accompanied by great photos. You will find garden/nature crafts, recipes and good ‘ol garden know-how.

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Well, I made it 21 days with daily postings. But…life has managed to get in the way.

So I’m Changing the Editorial Calendar

After using up all of my pre-written posts for this 31 Day Project, it has become increasingly difficult to continue posting every single day. The weekends have been especially killer because I would spend them trying to get ahead again (so I can work during the week).

I realized that I either had to abandon the project or stop posting 7 days a week. So, rather than abandon the project all together, I have decided to change my editorial calendar.

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It happened yesterday.

I was working in my office at dawn, when I heard a funny noise. {You know what’s coming, right?}

Backyard Chickens and Roosters

It sounded like a sick cat or a hurt animal. I immediately started walking from window to window trying to figure out if it was coming from the front or the backyard. I thought maybe a neighbor’s cat had been hit by a car or someone’s dog was sick somewhere near my house.

When suddenly…I heard it.

A pathetic “Cocka-Doodle-Doo” from an untrained voice. It was weak and shaky…but it was definitely coming from a juvenile rooster…in MY backyard.

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 Giving Old Wood New Life:

Several years ago, I discovered a shop on Etsy that made lovely pieces for the home and garden using reclaimed wood. To this day, Andrew’s Reclaimed is still one of my favorite Etsy stops.

Andrew and his wife, Melissa work as a team in this wood working business. Every piece they sell is recycled, re-purposed wood. And they give a lot of attention to the details so that each piece is durable and beautiful.

Everything is hand created in their Washington workshop and they are giving old wood, new life.

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Day 19: Garden Show Inspiration & Ideas

Why Visit a Garden Show?

There are many garden shows across the country and most happen in late winter or early spring. Everyone has their favorite. Some gardeners go to experience color in the dead of winter. Others are looking for inspiration before diving into their own backyards again. And some  are looking for the latest garden tool or the most unusual plant that they can nab before any of their gardening pals get their hands on it.

I get all of that and I suppose I go for those reasons too. But…

Although I enjoy several shows for different reasons, the one show I get most excited about it the Northwest Flower and Garden Show in Seattle, WA. Why you ask? Because that show gives me all of the above AND it consistently provides cutting edge information regarding sustainability and green living.

When I walk onto the convention center floor, I think…”These are my people!”

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It happens to all of us.

  • You make a great purchase at a farmer’s market for a bushel of vegetables
  • A friend calls begging for you to come harvest the fruit off her over-burdened tree
  • You have a crop in your backyard go all “crazy” with produce.

Each of these situations leave you with an abundance of produce that you either have to eat, put up or store. At times like these, we certainly can’t eat it all. And sometimes, we don’t have time to put it up. But we certainly should be able to store it!

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“I hope that people will think about the garden’s harvest as more than ripe tomatoes and cutting flowers…To me the ‘other’ part of the harvest… The garden’s life lessons, its parables—about control (or lack of it), about letting go, about the cycles and the giant web of interconnected life—are the really juicy stuff.

Be sure to pluck some of that goodness, too!”

~ Margaret Roach

Today’s post in the 31 Days of Living Homegrown is a about connecting to our garden and we have a special guest.

Margaret Roach is visiting here as one of the stops on the Blog Tour for her new book, The Backyard Parables - Lessons on gardening, and life. The book just came out a few days ago and I was lucky enough to get a copy in advance for this “tour” and I will be giving away a copy (Not mine! I’m keeping mine!).

The day Margaret’s new book arrived, I started a fire in the fireplace, pulled my favorite chair over and started reading. I read for hours (a luxury I rarely have) and I enjoyed picking up the book several more times over the course of the weekend until I finished the last delicious page.  [click to continue…]


Day 16 – Online Chicken Keeping Supplies

If you are a city homesteader like me, you don’t have access to a big farm supply store to get equipment for your chickens. Some of my friends who to live in a places like Portland and Seattle can just go to their local independent nurseries to find chicken keeping and homesteading supplies! But here in Los Angeles? Not so much.

The best feed store near me is a 40 minute trip (one way). So, I sometimes order online.  [click to continue…]