Monday, July 6, 2009

It's summer on the Island. How did it happen so fast? Gardeners are busy weeding and watering and picking raspberries and strawberries. Lilies overhang the sidewalks. Wild apples and mulberries ripen on the trees. Neighborhood cats prowl through the hosta beds and under the lilac bushes, as we all await the first tomatoes of the season.

Peat's garden is overflowing with a profusion of baby zucchini, herbs, and Asian greens. Inside the chicken coop are young chickens and ducks at various stages of growth. Peat hatched some eggs in an indoor incubator and some under a "broody" hen earlier this season, and the little chicks are growing quickly into juvenile birds that are fond of scratching around the edges of the chicken yard and roosting on branches Peat props up for them.

Above, clockwise from upper left, a baby heritage chicken, juvenile birds roosting on a branch above the younger birds' enclosure, ducks, hens and rooster scratch in the yard, baby chicks and ducklings share a feeder.

Sitting outside on a shady patio is a popular pastime during these warm summer days. The sound of a neighbor at work composing a song on the piano competes with the songbirds in the canopy of trees, and cool breezes blow in off of the river. Some long summer evenings, charcoal fires burn in an old Weber grill, and we share spectacular feasts of local farm foods and garden harvests. For our garden recipe of local trout with new potatoes and snap peas, see this feature in The Heavy Table

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