Terror of Tiny Town

The Homegrown Evolution in-box overfloweth this week with news of the cute and the tiny. Yesterday’s post about our miniature Red Currant tomatoes prompted Bruce F of Chicago to inform us that he’s working on the world’s smallest kale plant. He’s growing them in self-watering containers made with old pop bottles (more info on how to make a pop bottle self-watering container here and here). These pop bottle containers look like they’d work well for starting seeds, as they provide a constant source of water.

Nance Klehm, another intrepid Chicago resident, informed us that someone just gave her two bantam chickens for her backyard, the perfect compliment to her chihuahuas. Some say that bantams are better for smaller backyards due to their diminutive size. Readers with bantam experience please let us know what you think about keeping bantams vs. normal chickens as we only have experience with SUV sized poultry.

The photo above is, incidentally, a scene from Werner Herzog’s brilliant and inexplicable film “Even Dwarfs Started Small”.

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  1. Bantams are nice if:

    1. You live in the south because they tolerate heat well.
    2. You have limited space. (But if you have no more than 3 or 4, even full size birds are pretty manageable.)

    Bantams are not so nice if:

    1. You prefer chickens who stay in the yard when you let them out of the coop to forage.
    2. Especially when your neighbor’s dog really likes the taste of chicken.

    Because of their smaller stature they are more “flighty”. I even had one end up on my neighbor’s roof. I’d like to see a Jersey Giant do that.

  2. We just started experimenting with silky bantams. They have the huge advantage of being unable to fly over the knee high fence around the veggie garden, because of their silly fluffy feathers.

    We have an adult and a pullet; the young’un is too small to introduce to the big chickens yet, so we don’t know if our wyandottes will try to kill them or not.

  3. Does Nancy Klehm have a website or contact info? I have come across her name in researching foraging walks in Chicago… and was pleasantly surprised to see she is friends with the authors of the inspiring book I just finished reading. – April

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