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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Made in Americana: The Amazing Easter Egg Chicken

by jpaul (bio)

Just when I thought urban farming couldn’t get any more interesting, I started getting blue eggs from my favorite hen, Chewbacca. What an amazing pet.

Once she started a couple weeks ago, she hasn’t stopped laying them. I get an egg a day without fail, and if I am around for lunch that day, nothing tastes better than a blue eggs and ham sandwich. Chewbacca is an amazing breed of chicken known as the Americana (actually spelled Ameraucana, but I don’t like that spelling). When I purchased her a few months back, I was told that when she starts laying, her eggs would be either brown, pink or blue. Half the fun is waiting for the first egg to arrive to see what color “egg gene” the chicken has. Because of the variety of color, these chickens are also known as Easter Egg chickens.

Now that she is laying, all three of my chickens are in production mode, which means we get 2 to 3 eggs/day. After the initial trials of broken chicken coops and raccoon/hawk/possum attacks, my little backyard experiment is beginning to pay off. While urban farming is not meant to be a profitable venture, it is nice to know that I can now officially stop buying eggs. Rather than being a financial decision, I believe there is a spiritual aspect of urban farming that has been lost in our fast- moving, fast-food society. Brigham Young spoke wisely when he admonished the saints to never lose touch with urban farming as they settled Salt Lake Valley:

“The soil, the air, the water are all pure and healthy. Do not suffer them to become polluted. Strive to preserve the elements from being contaminated. Keep your valleys pure, keep your towns pure, keep your hearts pure, and labor as hard as you can. Adorn your habitations, make gardens, orchards, and vineyards, and render the earth so pleasant that when you look upon your labors you may do so with pleasure and that angels may delight to come and visit your beautiful locations.”

Okay, maybe he didn't say "urban farming", but he came pretty close. We should all ask ourselves if we have rendered our little place on this earth pleasant so that angels would be delighted to visit. As spring comes in the next months, begin small with one or two vegetables in a pot and you may soon find yourself with a full-size garden and chickens roaming your backyard. If you need help getting started, visit, the first community of urban farmers.

Note: MMM contributor Casey Peterson was recently spotlighted on Farm Loco.

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