With winter weather comin’ in hot…or I guess starting to cool off quite a bit, the residents at UM FLAT have been putting some finishing touches on winterizing the house along with some of our projects. At the UM FLAT, changing seasons mean changing focus and sometimes even switching our projects. Spring 2014 had us planting native gardens, preparing our vegetable crops and tomato greenhouse, utilizing our water catchment system, and raising our new young chicks.
Fast forward half a year and the FLAT is still actively working in the house and yard, but with different purpose. Here are a few things the FLAT has been working on recently.
We put our garden to bed! After pulling out a lot of the remaining roots, we planted a rye cover crop to pump back some solid structure and nutrients back into our garden’s soil system. This will help prevent rain-splash erosion, encourage aggregate growth and maintenance over winter, and will add a good amount of organic matter when spring comes. That Rye is looking Rye-teous!
Another yard project FLAT residents recently took on was to make our FLAT Flock more comfortable. Dropping temperatures can reduce egg production, cause comb frostbite, and can make for some unhappy hens. We’ve covered the majority of our coop with greenhouse plastic to greatly reduce the wind coming out of Hellgate Canyon and we’ll have a heat lamp turned on during the day to provide a little extra warmth and comfort to our laying hens.
If you do not have the extra space for a large garden, and are still lacking those little feathered friends in your backyard, weatherizing your windows is a pretty easy step to keeping the house warmer and reducing your energy bills. It’s inexpensive and easy to do yourself. Stop by the FLAT sometime to see how we managed it and get some tips for your own home!
Bring it on Winter!