The green and rolling countryside of Worcestershire, England, is home to the cider apple orchards which surround the gardens of Pear Tree Cottage. They enjoy a sunny south westerly aspect with sweeping views across to Martley Hillside, Woodbury and Abberley clock tower. The Teme Valley lies just over the hill and, not far away, is the Herefordshire border. Although our climate is temperate, our seasons are often uncertain and always a challenge to a gardener! This began in 2010 & follows the weekly ups and downs of garden work chronicling both successes and failures but, above all, demonstrates the fun enjoyed by three people who regularly garden in all weathers


28 June 2015

Eggstraordinary Development - Hens Laying Abroad!

No 2 shelter
Can't think what's got into the girls! They have suddenly decided to lay anywhere and everywhere!! Eggs are being found all over the place - on the floor of No 2 House (their day shelter), in the House for Hens nestbox, on the floor in the Henclosure, in the Hennery House nestbox and also on the Hennery floor!  I found and old drawer, placed some hay inside it and positioned it in their shelter for their and our convenience in the hopes that they might be dissuaded from laying on the floor. I even resorted to placing a couple of pavers in the corner where we found eggs as discouragement! Maybe it was all the attention they had at Open Gardens but, somehow I don't think so.  Given their extensive property portfolio, they are making the best of every inch of their luxurious surroundings!

They are laying really well - note 6 eggs from 5 hens yesterday! The figures for this year are:
  • Jan 69
  • Feb 86
  • Mar 114
  • Apr 108
  • May 115 

and so far this month - 95!
We are careful to check on and keep their fresh water supply topped up. At this time of year, they drink far more and with the longer hours of sunlight, their drinkers soon become green with algae.  I have a second smaller drinker in the Hennery which I also keep topped up with clean fresh drinking water.  As a treat, they have a box full of fresh grass clippings to scratch around in when I mow the orchard.  They continue to have layers mash for breakfast as well as a hopper full of layers pellets.  Mealworms are a firm favourite as well as vegetable tops and peelings.  We believe that a varied diet is important and output certainly proves it!

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