Things are coming back to life on Bluestem Pond. It’s been a long winter and a lot has happened to pull my attention away from the blog, but I think it’s time to come back out of hibernation, as the plants and animals are already doing.
I am so happy to be able to start going back out into the sunshine to observe the changes. All the fields have been either burnt or mowed and the farm vista has transformed into one big rolling hill which we can scan with no obstructions. It is disorienting. I’ll be glad to regain the vertical landscape with the paths cut through it to constrain our movements. Right now, it is like walking through a new house before the drywall has been applied to the walls. You have to use your imagination to see how things are laid out.
The chickens are getting a lot more free-ranging time than I’ve granted them in the past. Little Red has been moved to a new home where I hope she is better accepted. I had all I could take of worrying if she’d ever learn to hold her own.
We’ve begun taking coffee grounds and eggshells from the local bakery once a week and shifting the compost through stages. Here, Arya is pecking through the new goodies looking for something edible. She may get a big caffeine high.
We are preparing the field behind the barn for our next addition, a goat pasture. We laid out the location of fence posts, dug the holes, and put the posts into them to prevent anyone from falling in before we set them in for real. I am really excited about the two baby goats we plan to get. I’ll write a whole entry about them when we get closer to the time.
I used my big rake today to cut the abundant cattail shoots that were trying to repopulate the pond. That is a job and a half! I’ll have to keep on it so they don’t get a foothold. Walking around the pond, I was entertained by a ballet of leaping frogs making graceful arcs off the shore ahead of me. A little brown snake laid coiled in a dry knot in the grass. I wasn’t sure he was alive, but when I leaned in to snap a photo, he too leapt into the water and swam straight to the bottom to escape scrutiny.
The frogs have been singing us to sleep at night, and it looks like they’ve been busy. There were wiggling masses of black tadpoles pushing their noses against the shore to keep as far from the hungry fish as possible. It looks like they are getting bulges where their little arms and legs will push out soon. Usually, by the first warm days the tadpoles vanish en mass as if they’d never existed. I have never figured out exactly what happens, but there are plenty of grown frogs so some must survive.
I’ve started some weeding, raking, and planting seeds in my own carelessly random manner. Perhaps all the work will result in some color and neat appearance as summer rolls in. Hooray for springtime, at last.