It's hard to believe almost 10 years ago I was president of a company that taught others how to be business leaders through sharing my successes and my failures. At that time in my life, I wasn’t big on emails and had never even read a blog. Oh my, how life has changed! I am now a solitary chicken farmer, my arsenal is the World Wide Web. If you’d asked me 10 years ago, I'd never in a million years dreamed life would take me to where I am. My conversations now are with my family, friends, chickens, and on occasion the farmers who struggle alongside me. To think, I walked away from the "good life" to be with my family and foster the land. But, that's another story.
I want to start off by sharing with you why we eat pastured chicken. I love chicken; I'm certain that without meat I'd die. No amount of tofu could replace the 6-8,000 calories I burn per day. But, first I should explain how much my instincts conflict with killing when we are not growing it for ourselves. I dread butchering day, especially when my chicken’s head is on the block. You know, the ones that I nurture and watch grow into amazing colours with attitudes and unique personalities. Back in the day, I could sit down and unrepentantly devour 2 Costco chickens in one meal and still fit in a baked potato, side of KD, and a beer. I’d been reprogrammed to forget the taste of fresh eggs and the chicken of my youth.
I can’t eat store-bought chicken anymore. Now into my 40's, those same 2 Costco birds will be harder on the waistband of my pants and unfulfilling. I love pastured chicken because the birds are filling. One bird can last us a work week! That means, in one week we save 9 birds from slaughter and lessen our environmental impact by doing so. The fact is that the pasture bird lived a life running in the field unencumbered by walls. This is something that industry in North America is unwilling to risk. This gives us the upper hand to act now before industry advances and starts raising truly amazing chicken. If you need good breeding stock we have your back. Need a mentor or a partner? We will walk alongside you as time allows. Now here I am, driving this pastured chicken train like I stole it. Watch out, good things are going to happen for the small growers of crops and birds. Strength comes in numbers.
My job is to preserve, my intention has always been true to that. My preference has been to sell breeding stock. But in order to be sustainable we need to do a little bit of everything. I enjoy the genetics, and the people we meet. We've turned down some very very tempting offers to raise our birds in volume in free range poultry barns. As well as supplying butchers and restaurants with hundreds of birds per month. But, I don't want to butcher every month! It was never my intention to do so! My heart can only handle the abattoir every 3-4 months. When that feeling stops I'll know I've traded my soul for cash and it will be time to open another chapter. I don't tell you this because I want to guilt you into a vegan lifestyle. (There are enough vegans out there to tell you how horrible you are for eating meat) If God wanted you to eat toilet paper and hemp all the time, he certainly wouldn't have made dinosaurs... I tell you this because it's what's on my mind tonight. I'd rather eat a bird that has flavour and texture than one that was born in the lab and lived in and died in a building a mere 4 weeks later. I think it’s great people are eating organic, but they are missing the point. Organic doesn't mean anything to the bird. The revolution is upon us and our fine feathered friends. It's time to remove the corporation stronghold and farm again like our lives, our chickens’ lives, and our consumers’ lives depend on it. Because they do.
Lest we forget: Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.
This is a time to give thanks to those who have made every sacrifice and those who are currently serving. It's a time for reflection and remembrance. It's a time to look at the world around us and realize how fortunate we are to live in North America. We salute our former as well as our current service members for all they do and the integrity they uphold.
We've chosen this symbolic day to release our
Grade Eh Farms' Peace Poppies
We've been working intensely with poppies for over half a decade now. The original seeds I started with were black seeded papavar that were brought in from the Middle East in the 1960s and merely served as decorative art. The story is actually quite long and one day in passing maybe I can share it with you. I was generously gifted a few heads and was able to revive them. I set out crossing with other poppies we raise to get the genetics we have now. I've finally accomplished my goal of a large white flowering white seeded poppy. Don't be fooled by this gentle giant, this white poppy is soft on the eyes and silky to the touch. It makes a beautiful addition to any garden. Under a full moon with a slight dew to the air you can see these poppies mimic the illumination of that bright orb in the sky. On a hot summer day the heads will ooze a milky sap as if they are perspiring. Flower heads will reseed and grow the following year with very little maintenance. The dried heads make a beautiful addition to floral arrangements. If you are a prepper we strongly recommend this addition to your stockpile.
By far, this is one of my favourite flowers and they are produced on the West Coast of Canada by our small holding from our locally produced heritage and rare plant and seed collections. If you intend to keep this line of our flowers we ask that you state that they originated from our farm as Grade Eh Peace Poppies. The seeds will breed true and have not been genetically modified. Some variance in poppy head shapes and size may occur due to non selection of that trait and your soil conditions. Our seed germination is around 90% under controlled conditions. You can expect germination to be much lower when scatter planting. Can be challenging to transplant. I suggest container gardens with support already installed.
100% guarantee this plant will put a smile on your face!!
Approx 20-25 seeds
Envelope and shipping included
Add on an Imported Scarlet Flanders Poppy to your order for only 4.99 more!
A portion of the profits will be donated to charitable causes.
Thanks for dropping by. I'm Matthew Nelson, farmer of Grade Eh Farms. I post on where my love and passion for life intersect with family, farming, food, & chicken for the soul.
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Below are links to websites that gardeners and chicken owners may find helpful and interesting:
Unique chicken coop for a small backyard:
Best source for backyard henhouses in BC. Locally-crafted chicken coops made of repurposed BC cedar:
Useful information on raising healthy, happy free-range hens:
A portion of our ordering policy was stolen from Legbars of Broadway. Thanks Philip. :-)