Today I ambled down to the allotment armed with 8 beautiful salmonberry plants. A fellow allotmenter was selling them – they are rather like raspberries and grow best in pots. Upon my arrival, I found Tracy and gave her a couple as well as a handful of tiger nut seeds. Its quite late to plant these seeds but I intend to give it a go! Tracy excitedly showed me four loofa seedlings in her greenhouse. It’s amazing to get so many and if they grow well, we will be able to dry out the pods and have our own home grown loofas!
As I walked back up to the main path, Steve asked if I could help with checking the hives with the feeders. We put the sugar syrup in the feeders over a week ago and the bees should have made serious inroads into it. It’s especially important to feed a swarm as they will have eaten all the old honey stores before moving. It will take them several weeks to build out the foundation and start to build up their honey stores in the new hive. Hive 1 had about half the syrup left but the other two hives had finished theirs. We topped up all three feeders with a plan to do a full hive inspection on Sunday, weather permitting.
After sorting the bees, I walked down to check on Leia and got shouted at for my trouble. Rolling my eyes, I left to go and sort out the main coop. I collected an egg and threw out the treats for the girls. The chicks spent most of the morning hiding under the nest box and only made a brief appearance to grab a few mouthfuls of food before being chased under again.
With the weather closing in, I chose to take my food down to Leia’s broody coop and sit with her. I sat watching her for over half an hour as she moved around the eggs. A couple of times, she half stood up and shuffled around a bit. I hope this was because the eggs are starting to hatch. As she was moving, I managed to catch a glimpse of a couple of the eggs. I couldn’t see any cracks in them. Although the eggs aren’t due until tomorrow, I was hoping we might get lucky and have a chick a bit early. But I will have to be patient for another day.
Deciding not to disturb Leia anymore after I finished my lunch, I pottered back to the shed and began to do a bit of weeding. About ten minutes after I started, Liz appeared and we had a chat as the rain clouds fully closed in. Conceding that the rain was probably going to stop me doing anything else, I went home.
So tomorrow I plan to be down early to see if any chicks have appeared. I’m not sure we will have any as Leia mucked about a bit at the start but she has sat to perfection ever since. She is still sitting on eight fertile eggs so all we can do is wait and see!
Later, I went back to the allotment to collect some more eggs. Well in theory. There were no more. Instead, I ambled around the site and managed to find a good amount of sticks to add to the edge of the mini pond. I made a good pile of them and will arrange them tomorrow morning. Bradley swing by to see the ponds. He was part way through putting in his own and was a little torn about whether to use a blue barrel or to dig out his own and have an interesting shape. We had a chat before I dashed home for dinner.