It's March, and that means garden preparation time around here. While many of our friends living at lower elevations have already tilled their ground and planted their peas, we're still in our planning stages - lime still needs to be put down and tilled in (tiller still needs to be purchased!), raised beds still need to be built, seeds still need to be purchased. We're not in a hurry since we remember having snow in March or April every year we've lived out here, and the weather forecast I heard this morning is calling for snow early next week - we'll see...
Something new this year on our wanna-be farm is the addition of meat chickens! Yep, we ordered 50 birds that are scheduled to arrive in late April. This means building a lightweight pen so they can be moved around our field to eat up all the grass, weeds, and insects their little chicken hearts might desire. By late June, Lord willing, our little flock will be *ahem* dressed, resulting in a freezer full of delicious, healthy, "pastured poultry" for us!
Just in case you're wondering what pastured poultry is, here is a nice description I found on the web:
If you're interested in learning more about pastured poultry or in what we might be trying in the future(!), let me recommend a visit to Joel Salatin's Polyface Farm website. Stay tuned!
Because they are raised on a pasture, our broilers are healthier from eating grass and all the bugs they can find. They will also have a higher ratio of omega 3 fatty acids and will have more beta carotene than birds raised under more conventional conditions. Because their pens are moved daily, they are virtually immune from many of the diseases that have plagued confined flocks. Because they are penned, their meat will not be as tough as free-range birds. That's why they taste so good, and are good for you! (from this farm website)