We call them Free Range Chicks for a reason, and lately they’re ranging farther and farther away from their base of operations near the Rogue Farms Hop ‘N’ Bed.
Just the other day, we started seeing them on the lawn between the Hopyard and the Chatoe Rogue. For a Chick, this is a pretty good hike. So what’s going on?
There’s no going back now. Just a few days of sunshine is all it took to turn winter into spring. In addition to the first bines of the season, here’s a look at the other signs of spring at the Rogue Farms Hopyard.
Left: A Rogue Honeybee in a maple tree. Right: Visiting a daffodil.
As the days get warmer, the Rogue Honeybees can leave the hives more often. They’re finding nectar in some of our maple trees, daffodils, early blooming wildflowers and the hazelnuts next door.
A Free Range Chick enjoying a walk in the sunshine.
Sunny days mean better hygiene for the Free Range Chicks and Royal Palm Turkeys. The extra light makes it easier for them to remove bugs and dirt from their feathers. The sun also kills germs, in effect sterilizing the feathers and keeping the poultry healthy.
Not a sled, but a real rosebud.
What you’re looking at here is one of the first buds on our roses. We’ve been using Oregon grown rose petals in our Mom Hefeweizen and in the custom beer we created for the Portland Rose Festival. So why not grow our own? These rose bushes were planted a year ago and we’ll get our first harvest of petals in 2013.
As anyone who lives in Western Oregon can tell you, the sun can be a rare visitor this time of year.
Our Free Range Chicks know it too. Let the clouds part for more than five minutes and the Chicks will scurry to the sunniest part of Hopyard.
But they’re not sun worshipping…
Our chickens are free range. But that doesn’t mean they wander aimlessly through the Hopyard.
Just the opposite. They’ve developed a foraging method that’s so precise and methodical it’s a little bit scary.
They start in the same place every day, follow the same path around the Hopyard, and wind up in the same place at night. They really know what they’re doing.