I am glad to report the girls (our 16 hens) are all doing very nicely this summer and are especially happy considering that I have finally made some headway concerning the great mud baths in our front yard. No, I am not exaggerating. (Who, me?) While in the process of building our fabulous new “old” house, oodles and oodles of top soil were scraped away before I got a grip on exactly what was happening. The gardener in me knew it would turn ugly, but I had no idea, exactly HOW ugly.
Nothing would grow. I mean nothing. Plus, the girls were getting impatient there was nothing to eat. Finally I poured through my gardening library and came up with the solution – clover. Yes, that weed that everyone is trying to eradicate from their nicely manicured lawns. (One man’s weed is another woman’s dye plant; stay tuned for future postings.)
Seems we’ve decided in post WWII America that clover is a scurge and should be sprayed, starved and otherwise totally wiped off the planet. Well, maybe I am exaggerating, but not much.
Clover grows in tough conditions. It requires less water than grass, no fertilizer and actually adds nitrogen back to the soil making it a perfect companion for grass. It can be left to grow higher, which means less grass cutting and self-sows very easily. I chose White Dutch Clover (Trifolium repens) which is a perennial and it stays green all winter.
What’s not to love? And it makes the girls happy.