Here it is, New Year’s Eve, and what kind of things are we doing here at Fernwood to ring in the New Year? After early morning chores, Rick has been out checking under the plant covers looking for signs of rodent damage. None yet, thank goodness. Long after our season, plants remain in the forefront of our thoughts. I’ve been upstairs looking for some games to play tonight. We’ll have some friends and neighbors over, and playing a new board game is always a part of our New Year’s tradition. Of course, we won’t make it until midnight. We never do. It will have to be a pretty lively game, and our neighbors will have to be wide awake to make it past 10:00 p.m. Ooh boy, pretty rowdy bunch here at the nursery, heh?
While rooting around for a game, I came across some old ‘ The Farmer’s Wife’ journals. This one from the year 1915. 100 years ago. Rather fitting that the articles I would turn to would be about poultry raising. The text from the picture may be too small for you to read, but here are some interesting comments made in the article titled, ‘Poultry Pointers’. ” There are three important foods to consider in feeding for winter eggs – grain, meat, and green food.” “A dish of charcoal placed where the flock can reach it at all times will do considerable toward keeping the digestive organs in good condition. It absorbs poisonous gases and juices and often prevents serious trouble.” “The mangle split in two and stuck on nails for the hens to pick at and the cabbages hung up by their stems until the hens have eaten all except the tough, woody base of the stem.” ” A lazy, sluggish hen is never a good layer.” And the most interesting comment ( at least I think so) is this; ” Women usually succeed better with poultry than men because they are more careful about details.” Check out the sideline advertisements. Did you know that back in 1915, you could buy a fancy incubator for $ 7.85! I would certainly need to own ‘ The Queen’. ” Thousands of women now making all the way from pin money to a good living with poultry started with a Queen.”
Well, here at the farm, as we move beyond 2014, we will do our best to uphold the lessons and wisdom of poultry raisers of the past. Happy New Year to everyone, and thank you for supporting us here at Fernwood Nursery.