Celia Hart's blog about what's going on in and around her studio.
Art, printmaking, inspirations, gardening, vegetables, hens, landscapes, wild flowers, East Anglia, adventure, travel.

Friday, 10 January 2014

Back to her old tricks again

We have three hens that lay blue-green eggs, they are Araucana x Crested-Cream-Legbar hybrids and are named after spices – Saffron, Nutmeg and Ginger. We hadn't had a pastel coloured egg for many months, Saffron and Nutmeg had been moulting and Ginger . . . well dear Ginger-Spice, she stopped laying regularly 2 years ago, then laid the occasional egg and eventually in June 2013 she laid this – a teeny weeny egg containing nothing but egg white and a yucky grey blob.

Then, just after New Year's Day, I found a large pastel sage-green egg in the nest box. I assumed it was laid by Saffron-Spice, but the more I looked at the egg and thought about it, I realised it didn't look like Saffie's pale teal-blue pointy eggs. I picked up Saffie, her comb was still small and pale red and her pelvic bones were too narrow to lay an egg.

So who laid these . . . I spotted Ginger-Spice skipping down the ramp from the nests . . . yes indeed!

After well over a year, dear Ginger-Spice is regularly laying beautiful large sage-green eggs again.

It's very difficult to photograph Ginge' – she's got a new lease of life and is always dashing around . . .

. . . and she's even back to her old tricks :-)

Ginger was a very quick learner as a pullet and I taught her to do a little trick when I went to get the afternoon corn each day, but when Tarragon the Araucana cockerel came on the scene Ginge' gave up doing her trick. And when her egg-laying stopped she became bottom of the pecking-order and was often chased away from the feeders.

But LOOK! This is what now happens when I go into the feed shed . . .

Ginge' hops onto the little garden foot-stool and walks to the top, she waits and I give her a few grains of corn from my hand

then Ginge' hops onto my arm and we take a little stroll around the garden . . .

we have a little  chat and I admire her incredibly beautiful feathers . . .

which are like the glowing copper flames.

I've no idea what was the cause of Ginger's lost year, I'll just say it's great to have the old Ginge' and her beautiful eggs back again.



  1. What a lovely post - it made me smile. I miss our hens.

  2. She is a very beautiful hen, and how wonderful that she's laying those pretty eggs again. I love the colours in her feathers.

  3. Hooray to Ginger spice! : )

  4. Oh Celia, how wonderful for you and what a character she is!!! Pure inspiration on legs. You must do a cut of her skipping down the ramp!!!!!!!!

  5. Celia to Ginger: It's good to have you back on form, little hen.I think you deserve a treat!
    Ginger to Celia: maybe you could knit me one of those hackle-things like the one you're wearing?

  6. I love my Ameracauna chickens! They've been our best egg layers of all. We got a Cuckoo Maran and she sure didn't keep laying well. When we get a new hen, it will probably be an Ameracauna. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  7. Go Ginger Go! I'm glad she is laying again but it does make me a bit jealous. I'm happily married to a CITY boy and would love to have some chickens. Maybe someday, sigh. In the meantime I love reading about them.
    ps I am enjoying the flower posts in the bleak midwinter. ;-)

  8. Celia, please do pass my compliments (and perhaps an extra grain of corn) on to that truly beautiful Ginger Spice. I have never seen a pale green egg up close in any of my breakfast egg cups and will have to see if I can remedy that with the help of the farmers market.

    I hope that lovely Ginger will continue to be a contented layer. She is certainly a wonderful muse. What fun it must be to make drawings, and prints, based on her beauty.


  9. Do chickens get depressed? If I were depressed I wouldn't lay an egg!

  10. She's a beauty.

  11. Oh - such a lovely henny tale. I'm thrilled about Ginger Spice - hurray for her beautiful eggs.

  12. I was searching for the matter you shared through blog. It is quite interesting and obviously very informative for me. Thanks you very much!

  13. Oh, she is so beautiful - and I'm happy she's feeling a new lease of life. Watch out, the other Spice Girls!

  14. I went out to the coop this morning, looked hard at my crew and said, "If Ginger can do it, so can you!" The hens looked unimpressed and went back to eating. Sigh.

  15. Ginger's feathers look like they belong on a phoenix :)

  16. our girls lost a good year too - who knows why? this year they've been hard at it and we were getting 5 eggs a day which isn't bad considering most of them are 6 going on 7. Lovely Ginger - her feathers are beautiful!

  17. What a delightful post Celia. She lays such elegant eggs I think. Her feathers are beautiful too. It must give you such pleasure to have her on your arem as you walk around the garden.

  18. Well done Ginger, she is lovely and the eggs are a stunning colour, it would make a great paint colour!


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