Search This Blog

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Country Living, City Style

I've just about done all the farming local laws and space will allow me to do on my half acre. As I'm not at liberty to use all of it because I live in a neighborhood where appearances must be kept up, I'm cramming my urban oasis into a tiny plot of land.

It's almost like my house has a split personality. Porchaven in the front,

and garden plot in the rear. 

My small orchard consists of a pear tree, a plum tree, a fig tree, a pecan tree and three thornless blackberry bushes. They aren't really organized into an orchard the way one would think. They just occupy any old square footage of earth that was available on planting day. Each fights for its life.

I've slipped an herb plot right under the neighbors' noses, putting it in a corner of a front flower bed.
And because every farm needs animals in order to be a real farm, I have set up a hive for the package of bees that will arrive in about two weeks.

Bees are not the kind of animal I pictured myself herding when I started designing my urban homestead. Honestly, I think it isn't very farmer-like to fear one's flock. But a cow grazing in my front yard wouldn't go over very well with the authorities or those who own homes adjacent to mine.

So I've been talking to my husband about selling Porchaven and purchasing acreage outside of town. He seems to be warming to the idea and to help get him over the land divide, I took him out to a farm on Sunday. He petted the horses. He helped round up the donkeys that stubbornly refused to be rounded. He called to the belligerent cows and he cuddled the barn cats.

It looked certain that I was making a real breakthrough with him, thus I went in the feed room and scooped a container of cracked corn to cast to the chickens. My soul mate was taken in by the throaty coos of the delighted hens.

But suddenly something in his brain snapped. He impulsively snatched a fish net from a nail and said, "What's this for? Catching roosters?" And he went all city-kid at the petting zoo on me, chasing panicked chickens that clucked and flapped and kicked up dust and escaped via any route they could out into coyote territory.

I'm taking it as a sign that he may not be ready for the farm.


Jo said...

Are you sure you are allowed to have bees. A friend established bees in her yard and then found out there was a law about bees and they had to be removed. She did get one lot of honey out ot them.


Susan Kane said...

Hubby may have to have a few more trips to the farm before he lets go of his city-self.

Lisa said...

Ha!! I'm the city kid and my husband is the farm kid. I would need multiple trips to be comfortable!! Hee!

Lucy Adams said...

Hi Jo. I honestly don't know if the law prohibits backyard bees in residential areas. I didn't think to check on that one. It never occurred to me that anyone would care. What to do now that 3 pounds of honeybees are headed my way?

But Lisa, would YOU chase the chickens? Out of the blue? With no warning to the poor birds? Or me?

And Susan, I expect you are right. The man needs to be de-sensitized and then re-sensitized. This will be a process.

Jo said...

Something I forgot to mention, if the bees are on a lawn, be very careful not to bump the hive with a lawnmower.

Lucy Adams said...

Jo, I did think of that. I cut out a large square of old carpet and put the box on top of it.

William Kendall said...

In the long run, I'm going to have to go back to living in the country. It agrees with me more.