The girls have been helping me get my raised beds ready for the summer vegetables. They’ve been busy in the garden. Their scratching aerates the soil. They eat up grubs and they leave fertilizer. Then again, they’ve been a bit too enthusiastic in my potato patch. Last fall I circled a section of the garden with a low fence. I’ve filled it with leaves, compost and dirt. Perfect for potatoes. The hens say it is also perfect for digging. The soil is so loose that their enthusiastic scratching sends the dirt flying a couple of feet. In just a week, my nice half-foot deep potato bed has been reduced to an inch of soil. This is why, once the vegetable beds are planted, the girls will be kept in their fenced yard. You’ll see them looking longingly into the veg garden. Don’t feel sorry for them! They’ll still have a nice plot of loose dirt to scratch in and take dust baths. I’ll be tossing them bad bugs and weeds. Which is a fine set-up for backyard hens.