Bumper crops of eggs and marrows

It may not have been a very wonderful growing year, but one edible crop that’s thrived this summer is the courgette. Outshining every other vegetable, our two enormous plants continue to send forth magnificent and delicious offerings. We haven’t even been able to keep up with them so a few have morphed into marrows, which we chop up and feed to the hens who love every piece, along with servings of bread porridge (essentially, slices of wholemeal loaf soaked in water) – not the prettiest-looking dish, but it seems to go down very well.

The girls feast on bread porridge – note the incredible pose of Speckledy (in the foreground) having a good shake and twisting her neck right round in the process!

It’s definitely veg harvest time and the season seems to be on the turn, too –  James even noticed a frost on the roof of the extension roof this morning. Along with a daily helping of tomatoes, and courgettes of course, we’re collecting a bumper crop of eggs each evening – perhaps the girls prefer to lay on cooler days. Whatever the reason, there’s certainly been a surge in productivity from our dozen hens.

A lovely clutch

And the girls seem to moult just when you think they need to keep warm – one of the many baffling things about hens. Here’s Mabel looking slightly dishevelled having shed a few feathers. She has some lovely soft downy fluff that’s filling in the gaps, which I can’t resist stroking.

Mabel, mid-moult

Talking of such activities, there’ll be plenty of adorable animals to make a fuss of at the Burghley Horse Trials tomorrow where Country Living has a pavilion and, most importantly, runs the Dog-and-Owner Lookalike Competition with sponsor James Wellbeloved. If you’re going along, come and say hello at the CL stand!

Megan’s looking forward to accompanying me at Burghley tomorrow

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