This weekend was spent collecting the last of our eBay finds and, apart from some fox-proof wire, that is last of our major spends on 'nice-to-haves'. Both purchases were for the new girls, who are the foundation of our new flock.
We came across a Solway plastic coop, which can house 6-8 birds, for a third of the cost new so we pounced on that, plus we picked up a 3m x 6m metal pen for just £50, which was an absolute bargain. Had to travel to Stoke-on-Trent for it, but it was well worth the trip.
Finally, as we were driving back with it, we skidded to a halt outside a house advertising a small 4ft x 2ft lean-to greenhouse and bought that too! I was worried where I was going to grow tomatoes next year to avoid them getting blight, and also wanted to try and keep some green salad stuff going over winter, however, I didn't want to have to put up a big greenhouse or polytunnel just yet. We want to live here for a while before siting something like that as it needs a solid foundation and an appreciation of how the sun moves around during the year for maximum daylight exposure. This little one will be perfect.
I sowed some lettuce leave a few weeks ago and they are coming on nicely, I will be able to harvest some of these soon and hopefully grow them on over the winter in the little greenhouse and under fleece.
In the meantime, I've got to find a heating oil supplier and spend a vast fortune on having our propane tank filled up. We have around a third of a tank at the moment, but the heating hasn't gone on yet so we don't know how much we will use. We know we don't want to run out. That means the boiler conks out, has to be fixed to get it going and often a new pump is required. Better safe than sorry. I'm aiming to not have to fill it up again for another 12-18 months, so will making good use of the two log burners in the house, which need sweeping before we use them. Oh, and the boiler needs a service.
Money, money, money. Good job the cupboards are full of food...