Cultivate Simple Podcast in iTunes Chiot's Run on Facebook Chiot's Run on Twitter Chiot's Run on Pinterest Chiot's Run on Flickr RSS Feed StumbleUpon

Spring Cleaning

February 27th, 2017

It’s that time of year when I start selling off a few of the birds that hatched out last summer/fall. This year I have a trio of Ancona ducks, 9 Muscovy ducks, and 4-7 turkeys that I’m going to be selling. This will make way for the a few new laying hens this summer.

Although I really like all the birds, it’s much better on my feed bill to get rid of them occasionally. I used to try to sell in the fall, but I find that it’s easier in the spring. Some of the birds are also not easy to sex in the fall (like the turkeys). One of my turkey poults from last year is just showing that he’s going to be a tom, that means I can sell him with two hens as a trio. The muscovies are popular in the spring as well, I actually have a few people who have purchased in the past that are interested in a few more this spring. It’s always nice to send birds along to home where they’ll be happy and loved.

Spring Chores

March 14th, 2016

Spring is an exciting time to be a gardener, there are seeds or order, tiny seedlings to tend, gardens to plan, and so much more. Then there are all the chores that come with having a garden. Things that sometimes get put off because they’re not as fun as other things. Like picking up sticks, raking leaves, tidying up, picking up pounds and pounds of rocks, and so many more things.
raking leaves
Yesterday, I spent the afternoon raking all the leaf/grass clipping back under the apple trees. I put them there last fall and the chickens kicked them all out this spring. I could have fenced them early, but I know they’re eating bugs and aerating the mulch. Spending a day raking it back under the trees is probably worth it. I also picked up what seemed like hundreds of sticks, dug all the soil out from around the rocks in the back of the house….all back breaking chores, but things that are perfect on these warm spring days before you can dig into the garden and really get going.

What chores did you get done this weekend?

Crisp & Tidy

May 13th, 2015

AH, I love a crisp edge. In my gardens in Ohio I always made sure to edge all my flowerbeds each spring. It’s a little like spring cleaning in the garden, everything just looks so much neater afterwards.
I realized this weekend that this might be the reason I feel like this garden is a little unruly. So I started edging a new garden area that I’m making.
crisp garden edge 1
Last year I found this fantastic vintage edger at Liberty Tool. It’s perfect for this task, much easier to use than a shovel and much nicer than other edging tools I’ve tried to use. It’s worth far more than the few dollars I paid for it.
crisp garden edge 2
You know, it worked. Instantly the garden felt a little less unkempt and things really look much more tended. I’ve got my work cut out for me edging around the two apple trees in front. Hopefully I can get a big truckload of beautifully black compost to use as mulch and then the gardens will look completely new.

Do you like the edge your garden beds?

Time to Start Spring Cleaning

January 17th, 2011

Yesterday afternoon I took down all the Christmas decorations both inside and out. It’s always sad to do this as the house seems empty and bare afterwards. I miss the warm glow of the light in the evenings and the smell of pine in the house. For me this signals the start of spring cleaning.

All of the Christmas decorations were taken down, cleaned, organized and put into boxes. I try to make sure everything goes back in great condition so that it’s quick and easy to put up next year. It was the perfect day, sunny and bright. That made the outside work seem warmer than the 18 that it was, and it made cleaning the living a much sunnier task.

All of the fresh pine garland and the tree get put outside on the brush pile. They provide great habitat for snakes, rabbits and other animals. We have a pile that we’ve been building since we bought our house. It’s out back by the edge of the woods by the compost piles. It’s important provide this kind of habitat for animals in your garden. I keep hoping for a big black snake to move into mine.

Now that Christmas is down, it’s time to start moving furniture, cleaning the floors, and getting all those spring cleaning chores checked off the list. I like to get my spring cleaning done in winter, spring can get awfully busy around here with maple sugaring and seed starting.

Do you spring clean? When do you start?

Reading & Watching

Shop through these links and I get a few cents each time. It's not much, but it allows me to buy a new cookbook or new gardening book every couple months. I appreciate your support!


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.