Llamas and Gardens and Chickens (Oh My!)

Northstar.  (Jeremiah calls him Marvin)
Northstar. (Jeremiah calls him Marvin)

See this face?  This cute, adorable little llama?

Don’t let him fool you.  This is a guilty face.  This is the face of a culprit.  (Admittedly, a very cute culprit…)

Gabby and I had just finished up evening chores, and I decided, probably against my own better judgment, to check on my garden.  (You see, no one was weeding it while we were gone in Orlando, so, while I’ve made a valiant effort to beat back the weeds from the veggies, there are unplanted sections with weeds that are waist high.)  I think I was about halfway out when I realized something was amiss.

To get to my garden, you have to walk through several pastures.  (It actually used to be a pasture itself, but has since been converted.)  At first, I just thought that llamas were in the pasture next to my garden.  Turns out, they were actually making a pasture out of my garden.  I tried to run.  Several awkward, clomping strides later, I remembered that one does not run in welllies (rubber boots?  I started wearing such footwear while working at an internationally staffed sleep-away camp, and everyone used the British term…In America, I think we just call them rubber boots…).  So I stopped running and starting power walking (or something), and I briefly thought about stopping to take pictures–because I’m a blogger, I guess–but then I decided my squash and cucumbers and everything else were more important than photographic evidence.

So Gabby and I chased the llamas out of the garden.  (The llamas were not happy.)  Then I took pictures.

This is a llama footprint
This is a llama footprint
Evidence!  (This is a llama footprint and what was a very nice onion.)
Evidence! (This is a llama footprint and what was a very nice onion.)

They ate several onions.  (I can’t imagine why…)  Knocked over a tomato cage.  Generally ran a muck.

…Actually, they didn’t do too much damage.  In fact, if I let them back in, I think they’d mostly eat the weeds…

Once we were done chasing llamas out, we set about to beat back some more weeds and look over the plants.

Everything, including the weeds, seems to be doing quite well.

Look at all those blooms!
Look at all those blooms!

Nearly every vining plant I have is riddled with blooms.  We should be rolling in cucumbers, zucchini, spaghetti squash, watermelon, acorn squash, pumpkin…and the other stuff I can’t really remember.  (Don’t blame me!  All the rain has washed off most of the garden markers.  Either way, lots of food.)

The tomatillos are loaded!  I cannot wait!

2014-07-01 20.10.03
Admittedly, you can’t really tell from this photo, but we have four tomatillo plants, and they will be pretty prolific.

More tomatoes than I can imagine what to do with.

2014-07-01 20.10.222014-07-01 20.10.12

We found this cuteness in the raspberry thicket.  I imagine there may have been an unhappy bird around when we took this photo.  Other than the picture, we left it completely undisturbed.

2014-07-01 20.19.34

Oh, and my chickens are laying!  They’ve been living in a stall since their coop isn’t done.

The coop, in progress.  My ridiculously talented carpenter/husband has the redesign in progress.  Cluckingham Palace (I WILL have a sign made up) will probably be nicer than our house with shade via a chickeny pergola, insulated walls, lighting inside and out, and a washable surface in and out.
The coop, in progress. My ridiculously talented carpenter/husband has the redesign in progress. Cluckingham Palace (I WILL have a sign made up) will probably be nicer than our house with shade via a chickeny pergola, insulated walls, lighting inside and out, and a washable surface in and out.

Can anyone tell me what kind of chickens I have?  I’m completely clueless.


I know, not great photos.  You will see more once they move into the palace, but that won’t be for a week or so.

This one is my favorite...
This one is my favorite…

Anyone know what this is?  She (possibly he?) is my favorite.  Hatched this Spring, I cannot tell if it’s a roo or a hen.  (Please be a hen.  Please be a hen.  Please be a hen…)




15 thoughts on “Llamas and Gardens and Chickens (Oh My!)

  1. Somehow the livestock always finds the garden! Congratulations on eggs!!! I’m guessing the little white hen w/ red splotches on her wings is an Ameraucana, they lay blue/green eggs.
    The mahogany brown hen with all the white speckles is probably a Speckled Sussex, a very friendly, round, matronly hen that lays a pink/brown egg. Can’t really tell on the others. More pictures please! Liking the Palace, good work!!!


    1. Thanks for the info. The funniest thing about the llamas getting in was how upset they were to be put out again. Forget all the lovely acres of pasture they have; they wanted the bramble. (Or maybe the tomatoes.)


  2. I am no expert… but the cockerel crowing in your first chick pic looks like a Sicilian… I would say you have a blue orpington there with gray body and black head. The blacks with white specks are speckled sussex, same for the white with brown flecks. You may have a white sussex or sussex star in there as well, but I cannot be sure without looking properly. You have a black rock hen as well – black with goldy/brown head and neck. All excellent layers. you can expect about 300 eggs a year from each hen give or take, maybe more. The Orp will lay pale eggs, the sussex breeds lay a medium brown. Hope this helps! 😀 Btw, CLUCKINGHAM PALACE — Oh I wish I would have thought of that! BRILLIANT! Gahahaha!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh – and if your brown speck sussex was hatched this spring, she looks to be a hen, as she does not have a large waddle (under her beak). The hangy downy things on either side of their beak become prominent fairly soon in cockerels. So she’s a keeper!


      1. I was the same way about my Dusty… “please be a hen! please be a hen!” And she’s a hen! YAAAAAYYYYY. 🙂 I’m warning you – you will fall in love with these babies. Chickens are surprisingly rewarding pets!


  4. I think that chick may be a Salmon Faverolle, they come in several color combo’s have some feathers on their feet and an extra toe. (5 toes) And that Llama hoot print looks like a giant deer track! 🙂


    1. She does have feathers on her feet. She’s my cutest; I decided.

      And, yeah, they do look a little like deer tracks, though interestingly, they aren’t hoofs. Llamas actually have padded feet with two toenails.


      1. That is neat, are their pads kinda like a horses frog then? And if she has that 5th toe she is for sure a salmon. Salmons are my favorite. They are sweet, docile and beautiful.


  5. I wonder if the cockerel could be a Rhode Island Red? It is Sicilian if it has a double crest – kind of a cupped effect on top of head with 2 rows of waddle. RIR has a single crest. But the colour can be quite similar. Just wondering. Plus RIRs are much more common.


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