Soon to be a greenhouse
Soon to be a greenhouse


Yep, we got a notice the other day from the City of Olympia telling us we had too many quail. That means, of course, that one of the neighbors complained because, well, there was no other way for the city to know what we had in our backyard.

So we appealed and we lost the appeal, and they have given us until July 5th to move or get rid of our flock, and we spent a day moaning and being pissed off and yes, I was cussing a bit….LOL….and then….

We spoke to Bev’s son, who has a goat farm three miles away, out of the city limits, and he said sure, build an aviary on his place and keep the birds there, and Bev was fine with that and doesn’t mind going over there daily to feed and water the birds, and then I was thinking I could easily make our two existing aviaries into greenhouses, and we can start growing more plants for a longer growing season….soooooo

I’m no longer cussing.  The work has begun on the new aviary on Matt’s property, and we’re moving all the quail over there this weekend, and….

Goodbye catastrophe and hello solution!!!!!

When I was younger this sort of thing would have put me in a bad mood for weeks.  Now, well, let’s just say I am much-mellower and I realize that very few obstacles are worth pissing and moaning over.

What really bothers me about the whole thing is the neighbor, whoever they were, didn’t just come and talk to us. We have tried to foster a spirit of community in our neighborhood, and it just seems like people, at times, don’t understand what that means.

Oh well!


We struck a deal with the local urban garden center and they will set up our greenhouse for us and provide seeds and knowledge. In return we will sell the seedlings to them for a discount. In other words we’ll become a wholesaler of plants and I think that is very cool.


If you haven’t tried it then at least consider it.  I’m not a scientist, so I can’t tell you exactly why it works. I just know it does.  We have never grown such vibrant, healthy plants as the ones growing in our hay bale garden.  The potatoes are absolutely going nuts, as are the onions, carrots, kale and pumpkins.  You can bet I’ll have some hay bales in the new greenhouse for next year.

You could probably still give it a go this year if you wanted.  It takes seventeen days, give or take a day, to amend the bales with fertilizer, water and my own magic elixir, rabbit poop, so that still gives you more than enough time to grow some fall veggies or even late-summer veggies.town_884


We had the wettest winter on record here in 2016, followed by two very hot weeks in early May, but since then we’ve had a very normal June for us, which means on-again-off-again showers and temperatures ranging from 65-75.  Right on schedule, the warmer temps and sunshine are due this Saturday, the 25th….so for us, this is a normal late spring/summer.

I’ve been watching the news about the droughts and severe storms and tornadoes and flash flooding, and I swear to God, I don’t know why more people don’t move to western Washington.  Right about now I’ll bet there are millions of people who think 75 degrees sounds pretty darned good.  Actually, we are supposed to have an additional 20,000 people move into our city in the next year. I’m already dreading the increase in traffic.  LOL  Shhh, don’t tell anyone we have perfect weather here.


The quail are at the peak of their laying season right now. We get between five and six dozen eggs per day, and that’s about all we can hope for with the number of birds we have.

We currently have some specialty quail eggs in the incubator, something new we thought we would try.  When they are adults they will sell for $100 each, so cross your fingers and hope they all live.


We’ve already harvested the raspberries.  Blackberries are ripening now and then it will by the blueberries’ turn….and the grapes are going whacko!


Thanks for stopping by.  I always appreciate the visits and comments, so keep them coming.  Share your thoughts in the comment section…tell us all what works for you…and in advance, thank you!




23 thoughts on “Big Brother is Watching

  1. Hiya Bill, well done for not losing your head and blowing up in steam! lol! I know I would have done! Neighbors, pain in the nosy butt! but well done for turning it around and making a deal with the garden centre!


  2. I am so sorry that happened to you all. But yay for solutions! I am also jealous of your mild weather! I’ve been to Olympia and it is positively GORGEOUS!!! It was 101 here yesterday, and I spent 1.5 hours in my garden yesterday watering and amending our beds with cocopeat to try to help keep in the moisture. Need to mulch next.


  3. Hi Billy,
    So sorry that some people can’t abide others doing well but don’t have anything do except mind other people business. Good to hear that you have a plan anyway. I hope the transfer of the quail to their new residence goes well.


  4. Sorry to hear about the quail and especially about the bad neighbor! Glad you are able to move them somewhere. So cool that you are become a plant wholesaler! You should right a book about how to earn a living as an urban farmer!


  5. We have a neighbor who watches the activities around here — to help keep the balance. Right. Anyways, as you have done, we can work around these issues and complaints. I enjoyed reading your post. How wonderful that you can grow your own food! Blessings.


  6. Aren’t quail quiet birds? So, it makes me wonder what the neighbor was complaining about. Anyway, there is always someone in the neighborhood like that. We have two people in our neighborhood who see and tell everything. They peek over the fence and then run to deliver their findings to the officials. I will be so happy to get my place sold so I can get on the road and away from here. Anyway, Bill you know that things always work out for the better. I am so happy you found an immediate solution for the quail. It must be time for you to expand your quail farm. And, look at you, selling seedlings to the local nursery. You go, Farmer John! 🙂


  7. Marlene, the female quail are very quiet, but the males chortle, usually at dawn and dusk….and when this neighbor complained, we had quite a few chicks born and we hadn’t sold them yet, so yes, there was some noise….but all they had to do was talk to us and we would have handled the problem. Oh well, it will all work out in the end….and I’m excited for you to hit the road and begin your new adventure.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. So sorry your neighbor decided to be a douche instead of a decent human being who could have just came and spoke with you. Glad you were able to find such a quick solution though!

    As for the hay bales, we will be doing potatoes in hay bales next spring. I’ve been doing a good bit of research, and it seems like a great idea! For now though I’ve just got to beat the 100 degree temps and drought. Not fun having to water ourselves EVERY morning AND EVERY night!


    1. Thanks Milisa! I don’t put much faith in human beings, so this came as no surprise. Oh well, I just won’t share my veggies with that neighbor. LOL Give those hay bales a try. I’m sure you’ll like them.


  9. I don’t know about Washington, but here in So Cal they routinely fly drones over the neighborhoods to check out what’s going on behind the fences. It is not commonly known, I just happened to run across this instrusive, underhanded, sneaky, what the heck why, should be illegal, spying, when we were sited at work for having a “messy” back parking lot. So around here it doesn’t have to be a neighbor.


    1. Oh my, Belinda! That just turns my stomach, quite frankly. Drones are going to be the Big Brother of the future. Makes me almost wish I owned a shotgun . . . almost but not really. I don’t think most people have a clue how many of their privacy rights are being stomped on by the government thanks to Homeland Security and 9/11. Anyway, thanks for mentioning that.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I ranted for years that people were giving away their rights for supposed security, kinda like feudalism, but no one wanted to hear it. They would always say something like I don’t break the law so they won’t be coming after me, but anybody who knows any history knows it doesn’t work that way 😧

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Belinda, don’t even get me started on this….it’s too late I guess….but it is amazing what we are willing to give away for the illusion of safety. A society that lives in fear is a society willing to sacrifice everything they have earned.

    Liked by 1 person

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