Tuesday, April 23, 2013

The Onion Project - Growing from scraps

A few weeks ago I noticed half of an onion in a bag in the fridge that was growing roots and had leaves started out of the top. Since I have never grown onion in any way, I thought why not give a try growing one from scraps. I know there are many things you can "regrow" from kitchen scraps (celery, garlic, carrot tops, etc). I have never regrown anything, so I decide to grow some green onions. I put the onion (still in the baggy) in my kitchen window sill and within just a few days I had beautiful green leaves pushing out the top of the bag. A few days later found an onion that had gotten lost in the pantry that was already growing leaves and decided to do the same with that one. Now I have 2 onions (1 half and 1 whole) growing on my window sill. Here is how the rest of the project finished out...

1. After the leaves started growing well. I removed the onions from the plastic baggies they were in.
2. I removed all of the skins from the bulb, being careful not to tear any roots off.

3. After finding that one of the onions had 2 bulbs, I separated these bulbs using a paring knife. Being careful again not to damage any roots.

  4. I filled a few extra pots I had lying around with a dirt and potting soil mixture. I planted the onions fully covering the bulbs with soil.

5. Now I can go out on my back porch and snip off green onions whenever I please, instead of running to the store to buy a bunch.
With this being my first experience with onions, (and regrowing scraps at all) I have no idea what to expect from here. I don't know if the plants will bolt (and if they do, should I save the seeds to plant next year?) I don't know how long they will provide me with these beautiful green onions. All I know is that I am excited that I've made it this far with my onion project and we will just have to wait and see what happens. Maybe I'll try garlic next....
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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

What season is it?

I don't think Mother Nature can decide! Just a few weeks ago I posted about how excited I was that Spring was finally making an appearance. And now this....

I should have known better than to get ahead of myself. We always have a late winter storm after the trees and bushes have started budding. Today is April 17th and it literally looks and feels like January 17th outside!
It looks like we'll be pushing the finishing of the chicken coop off for at least another few days. It's a good thing the older chickies still have 2 weeks left before they are ready to move out. We will surely need that extra time now. While we are on the subject of chickens, here are a few updates and pics of the girls...

These are 4 out of 6 of the BIG girls - 4 weeks old today!
White Leghorns and Ameraucanas

One of the LITTLE girls - 2 weeks old today
Buff Orpington

All 4 of the Little BO's. A little flighty because I forgot to turn off the flash! Oops!

We are having so much fun with these chicks. I'm just amazed at how fast they grow. They are getting better with being handled by us. The Ameraucanas don't mind being held and petted at all. The Leghorns are a little more timid and don't like being picked up, but they do ok once you are holding them. They are also doing much better with being pet on the back while inside the brooder. The little Buffs are still a little shy. They are ok once you have them, but huddle in a corner as soon as they see your hand in the brooder. The little ones still won't eat out of my hand... but the big girls love to. They run to my hand looking for a treat everytime they see it.
Sometime this week I will be putting all the chicks together for a test run. The 2 week old chicks have been in a seperate brooder. On Sunday while I was changing their bedding, the BIG girls had access to where the LITTLE ones were. 2 of the Ameraucanas kept going in to "check them out". They didn't peck at them or climb on them, just watched them. So hopefully they are big enough now to hold their own with the older chicks. They will have to get used to eachother since they will be sharing a coop and I know now is about the time that the pecking order will really start going into effect. Hopefully it all goes well and we don't have any pecking or bullying issues. I'll update again soon!
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