By Troy Miller
Mallard Court is on 10 acres out in the country of Missoula. We will be getting horses in the future, but for now, we have five hens and one rooster. We got the chickens when they were babies. When you get chickens as babies, you will need a heat lamp to keep them warm until they get all their feathers when they get bigger. They need to stay in the coop until they don’t need the heat lamp anymore. When chickens are little, they need to be fed twice a day. Once they get bigger, you only need to feed them once a day. I clean out the chicken coop once a week (Pictured, Troy next to horse barns).
We also have a garden that I and the staff, George, built (see the progress, pictured below). We have corn, sunflowers, tomatoes, cucumbers, mint, sage and strawberries. I have already picked over a dozen small tomatoes. I pull the weeds in the garden three times a week. I water the garden and the field every day. We found some free ceramic chickens and put them in the garden to help keep the gophers out!
We will also be starting a distribution center here on the farm soon. When the group homes in town order food and cleaning supplies from us, we will break down the orders and deliver them to the homes. I will get paid to work with distribution. I used to do it when I lived in Anaconda, and I miss it.
From left, Ashton and Troy; tomatoes in garden; Troy with chicken.