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December Garden Tips

Saturday, November 17th, 2018

December Garden Tips

Working in your garden is an excellent escape during the holidays. It’s a great time of year to do some of the heavy work in the landscape as opposed to sweating it up in the heat of the summer.

Don’t put up the mower yet. Although turf grasses have stopped growing, you can use the mower to chop up and recycle the leaves back into the lawn or for a compost pile.

Prepare gas-powered engines for winter. The owner’s manual is the best guide to winterizing a lawn mower, tiller, garden tractor or other power equipment.

Drain and store garden hoses and watering equipment in a readily accessible location. Lawns and other plants may need an occasional watering during a prolonged dry spell.

In general, once the weather gets and stays cold, pruning of deciduous plants (ones that lose their leaves) can be safely done. Evergreen hedges can be sheared or cut back in the winter also. Wait until February to prune your roses. Remember – Do Not Top your Crapemyrtles! Simply prune to remove seed heads and shape.

Prepare for the cold weather before it hits! One of the best things you can do for your landscape plants is to provide a 2 to 3-inch layer of mulch. Mulching is necessary year round but during the colder periods, it provides a layer of insulation for the roots. Water your landscape well before a cold spell. A drought-stressed plant is more susceptible to freeze damage. For more tender plants, purchase frost cloth for extra protection. Cover the plant completely allowing the edges to come all the way to the ground, utilizing the heat which radiates from the ground.

December is a perfect time to plant trees and shrubs so they can develop a strong root system for next Spring. Cool weather color such as Pansies, Snapdragons, Cyclamen, Flowering Cabbage and Kale add splashes of color to your landscape. Spring flowering bulbs can be planted now once they have been properly chilled.

Make your home beautiful for the Holidays with a stunning assortment of floral quality Poinsettias, Cyclamen, freshest greenery and Christmas Trees. Add a mix of new indoor and tropical plants to energize your home décor.

Remember to provide food and water for the birds this winter. You can attract just as many birds with a bird bath as with food, especially during the dry spells. To draw a diversity of birds provide a variety of seeds, like sunflower, thistle, safflower, and millet; plus suet. Once you begin putting out bird food, continue feeding them through the springtime.

Three Tips To Help Molting Chickens

Wednesday, November 7th, 2018

Molting ChickensIt’s autumn. Time for comfy sweaters, pumpkin-flavored everything and… vacation? For backyard chickens across the country, shorter days often signal time for a break. Birds may stop laying eggs, lose old feathers and grow new ones. This annual vacation from egg laying is called molt.

Molt is driven by season and usually occurs in the fall when the hours of sunlight decrease. For our birds, fall means it’s time to prepare for winter, which requires quality feathers. That’s why hens take a vacation from laying eggs and redirect their energy to regrowing feathers.

 When do chickens molt?

This feather loss phenomenon first happens when birds are approximately 18 months old and then occurs annually. Backyard flock owners should expect about 8 weeks of feather loss and regrowth but could take up to 16 weeks for some birds.

Though the general process is similar, not all molting seasons are created equal.

The onset and length of molt looks different for each bird. How long chickens molt for depends on factors such as age, consumed nutrients and the environment. You’ll often first notice that feathers are losing their sheen. Hens may then gradually lose a few feathers or it could happen overnight. We’ve noticed that more productive egg-layers and younger hens recover from molt more quickly than older or less productive hens. In any case, proper nutrients and management can help birds through molt.

Three tips for molting chickens

  1. Pack the protein Just like humans, birds need a different diet depending on their current activity or life stage. Protein is the key nutrient to pack in a flock’s diet during molt.The number one nutrient switches from calcium to protein during molt. This is because feathers are made of 80-85 percent protein, whereas eggshells are primarily calcium.

    When you notice your chickens losing feathers, switch to a complete feed that’s 20 percent protein and includes probiotics, prebiotics and key vitamins and minerals. Purina® Flock Raiser® chicken feed is a key option. A high-protein complete feed can help hens channel nutrients into feather regrowth and get back to laying eggs.

    For organic flocks, try switching hens to Purina® Organic Starter-Grower when molting begins in order to maintain organic status and provide a higher level of nutrition they need for feather regrowth.

  2. Keep stress low
    While on vacation, people generally want plenty of comfort and room to relax. It isn’t so different inside the coop during molt. Keep molting chickens comfortable by preventing stress.During molt, the area where the feather shaft meets the skin can be very sensitive, so reduce handling and provide plenty of clean bedding. Offer enough space for your birds to rest and relax in private. For each bird, four square feet inside the coop and 10 square feet outside of the coop can keep them comfortable.In addition, provide access to plenty of fresh, clean water and proper air ventilation. Hydration and ventilation can help keep the backyard coop spa-like for feather regrowth. Avoid introducing new flock members during this time, as adding in new friends and potentially re-shuffling the pecking order could add stress.
  3. Transition back to layer feed
    Once birds are ready to return from vacation and begin producing eggs, it’s time to adjust the nutrient profile to match their energy needs once again.When hens begin laying eggs, transition back to a complete layer feed that matches your goals. Gradually mix the complete layer feed with the high-protein feed over the course of 7 to 10 days. This can help avoid digestive upsets and allows birds to get used to the taste and texture of their new feed. Once they’re back on a complete layer feed and have vibrant new feathers, get ready again for farm fresh eggs for your family.

Thanksgiving Safety Tips For Dogs and Cats

Thursday, November 1st, 2018

Thanksgiving Safety Tips The winter holidays can be fun for the whole family, but let’s make sure it’s not a dangerous time for your pet. Thanksgiving centers around food, so here are a few Thanksgiving safety tips to protect your pet and avoid a visit to the veterinarian.

 Cut the fat:

Fatty or rich foods like beef fat, poultry skin and gravy can cause severe gastrointestinal issues in pets, including:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Excessive gas
  • Serious diseases like pancreatitis. Pancreatitis is a severe inflammation of the pancreas, an organ that produces digestive enzymes. On the mild side, pancreatitis can cause vomiting and a decrease in appetite, but can potentially be fatal.

If you want to treat your pet, it’s best to stick to a pet treat or a couple of small bites of lean poultry or unsalted/unbuttered vegetables.

Bones are bad:

Although bones from our holiday birds look good to pets, they are dangerous and can cause intestinal upset and may even splinter once digested.

Watch the packaging:

Make sure you dispose of any turkey or other food packaging quickly and appropriately.

All strings, plastic holders and bags that have a meat smell to them can be very attractive to a pet. Once ingested, these items can cause damage or blockage of the intestines.

Chocolate is particularly toxic:

Consider all the cookie and desserts offered during the holidays, many of which contain chocolate.

Chocolate is dangerous for dogs in particular because it contains theobromine, a caffeine-like ingredient that can be toxic to your pet. Dogs are not able to metabolize theobromine as quickly as humans. Complications include:

  • Digestive issues
  • Dehydration
  • Excitability
  • Slow heart rate

Later stages of theobromine poisoning include epileptic-like seizures and death. Keep your pet away from dark, semi-sweet and baker’s chocolate because they contain higher levels of theobromine.

Source:  Banfield

Feral Hog Traps By Boss Hawg

Wednesday, October 31st, 2018

hog trapsPick up Boss Hawg Feral Hog Traps at J & N Feed and Seed. Feral hogs are a big problem for our area of Texas. Feral hogs are prolific breeders and can cause considerable damage to property. Their rooting and trampling activity for food can damage agricultural crops, fields, and livestock feeding and watering facilities. They can even damage or destroy wildlife feeders.

If you’ve got a wild hog problem, come to see us for solutions. We carry Boss Hawg feral and wild hog traps, built with reliability and durability in mind. The framework is 1½”, fourteen gauge, square steel tubing. Plenty of bracing provides additional strength to trap and retain feral and wild hog populations. They’re built with 6 gauge wire panels through-out. All material is MIG welded and all of the tubings are prime coated. These hog traps have all been field tested and are proven winners in continuous loading, retention, and durability. And did we mention, they’re made right here in Texas?

Stop by J&N Feed and Seed in Graham, Texas for animal traps, hunting supplies, feed and more.  Want to find out more about the feral hog problem in Texas, click here.

6th Annual Holiday Shopping Spree Shop Graham First

Wednesday, October 31st, 2018
NovDec
47

Shop Graham First Holiday Shopping SpreeThe 6th Annual Shop Graham First Holiday Shopping Spree event is here! Have you heard of this great program called Holiday Shopping Spree right here in Graham?   Sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce and Shop Graham First, Holiday Shopping Spree encourages patronage to local stores and businesses in Graham.  This year the contest runs November 4th through December 7th and has over $3,000 in prizes up for grabs, with LIVE, WEEKLY DRAWINGS.

J&N Feed & Seed is a participating retailer.  Stop by and pick up your Holiday Shopping Spree card today and start shopping in Graham!

Here’s how it works:

  • Each week, merchants will receive a new batch of color-coded cards.
  • For every $25 spent, the customer will receive a stamped card.
  • Each week’s cards are clearly marketed for the appropriate week.
  • contest starts over every week with a different colored card.

Shoppers are responsible for turning in cards to the Chamber of Commerce by 5 pm each Thursday of the contest period.

J&N Feed and Seed is a proud member of the Graham Chamber of Commerce and a proud participant of the 6th Annual Shop Graham First Holiday Shopping Spree. Questions? Contact the Graham Chamber of Commerce.

 

 

Fish Stock Delivery

Wednesday, October 31st, 2018
Nov
15
4:00 pm

Fish Stock Delivery in Graham, Texas at J&N Feed and Seed on Thursday, November 15, 2018.

fish stock deliveryLooking for pond stocking in Graham, Texas? We’ve got a fish truck coming in soon! The Stock My Pond fish truck will make a delivery to J&N Feed and Seed in Graham, Texas, on Thursday, November 15th, from 4:00 until 5:00 p.m.  It’s a great time to get your pond stocked!

Stock My Pond will have channel cat, largemouth bass, black crappie, bluegill, hybrid bluegill, red ear bream, and fathead minnows.  Find out what type and size fish we offer on our website.   The Stock My Pond fish truck provides containers for all fish but the 11″ channel cats, so please bring your containers for them.

It is not necessary to pre-order the fish, but if you are looking for a large quantity or pond packages, we suggest you call.  Questions?  Call Stock My Pond at 501-676-3768 or give us a call at the store 940- 549-4631.

J&N Feed and Seed
450 Pecan Street
Graham, TX
Phone: (940) 549-4631

6 Hunting Season Preparation Tips

Saturday, October 20th, 2018

Hunting Season Preparation TipsDeer hunting season is just around the corner. Now is the time to start preparing for the season by picking up your license & taking hunter education classes; clean and repair your equipment; check the lease and property and more. Here are 6 tips to help you prepare now for a great season.

  1. Get your hunting license – Save time and purchase your hunting license ahead of time. Don’t stand in line at the last minute waiting for your license. If you are a new hunter find out if a hunter education workshop is required. Check with your local Parks & Wildlife office or with your county extension agent. Many courses are now offered online which can save you time.
  2. Check dates & regulations – many state regulations are updated annually, take the time to check them and make sure you are in compliance. Find out the dates for the opening season for the various types of deer you are hunting, and for the different hunting methods. In Texas, you can check them at the Texas Parks & Wildlife website.
  3. Clean and repair your equipment – If your equipment has been set aside for some time, take it out and clean it. Check the sight and scope of your rifle. Clean your deer feeders, and check your blinds. Any repairs needed are best done now to save you time during hunting season. Make sure you have ammunition on hand, get it early as supplies can be limited at times. Don’t forget clothing! Make sure they fit.
  4. Test your equipment – If you haven’t been practicing at least once a month, it’s time to start. This keeps you in practice for aiming, shooting and handling your gun.
  5. Check your lease or property – Do you need to clear out some areas? Is your deer feeder in the right place? Put your deer blind up so the wildlife becomes used to it. Scout out patterns and be ready for hunting season
  6. Safety first – Have a first aid kit on hand in the blind, your truck or on the property. Refill it with any missing items. Consider having an emergency plan in place, it’s always best to be prepared.

Preparation is key!  Follow these simple tips for a successful hunting season.

November Garden Tips

Thursday, October 18th, 2018

November Garden Tips

This is the perfect time to plant your chilled bulbs for spring. They should be in the ground before the first frost, so plant now while the soil is still easy to work. Iris, daylilies, and gladiolas should also be planted at this time, although they are not “true” bulbs, but rhizomes, tubers, and corms, respectively. Yet all of these like bulbs require the cooler soil of winter to generate healthy new growth in spring.

Transform your landscape with the addition of fresh, colorful blooms! Pansies are by far the most popular Winter color. The “Matrix” Pansy has been outstanding for our Texas weather. It will not “stretch” during bouts of warm temperatures and is bred to grow out, not up. This compact grower offers shorter stems to support large colorful blooms. Dianthus (also known as “Pinks”), Snapdragons, Cyclamen, Violas and the fragrant Alyssum are also good choices for cold tolerant annuals. Ornamental Cabbage and Kale provide interesting texture in the landscape as well as color. For best effect, limit your planting to two or three colors per bed.

The key to growing beautiful annual flowers is soil preparation. Remember to add 2 to 3 inches of mulch to all beds to reduce moisture loss, prevent weeds from germinating, and to insulate the soil from the cold.

Using the same colorful annuals will add a splash of color to your patio containers. Fill your container with fresh potting soil, plant food and your choice of these beautiful annuals to brighten your winter. Keep them watered as necessary and remove faded flowers to encourage repeat blooming.November Garden Tips

If you want those beautiful Texas Bluebonnets in the Spring, sow the seed in early November!

Please remember the birds! Texas is a haven for birds. No other state in the United States has more species within its boundaries. There are currently over 620 species documented in Texas, which is almost 75 percent of all bird species recorded in the continental United States. To attract the widest variety of wild birds, you should consider placing a wide variety of bird feeders and food around your yard.

Yeti Coolers and Accessories at J&N Feed

Tuesday, October 16th, 2018

Yeti coolers

Pick up the Yeti coolers and drinkware at J&N Feed and Seed. We’re your headquarters for YETI Coolers, drinkware and accessories. Unlike ordinary coolers, which are essentially disposable, YETI® Coolers are made to last! We carry the full line of Yeti coolers including the Tundra, Roadie, Hopper, and stock the Rambler series of drink-ware including the Yeti Colster, 20 & 30 oz tumblers and of course the new Yeti Tundra Hauler.  Whether you are looking to protect your investment with a cable lock or just want a secure place to hold your beverage, we have what you need!  Not sure what you need? Let our knowledgeable staff

help you find the Yeti that’s right for you!

Tundra Coolers 
The original and still the best heavy-duty cooler around, the YETI Tundra is a rugged, all-purpose, large cooler that comes in a variety of sizes for wilderness expeditions, hunting, fishing, tailgating, and more.

NEW Tundra Hauler

Our first-ever YETI cooler on wheels is the answer to taking Tundra’s® legendary toughness and unmatched insulation power the extra mile. And nothing was sacrificed in the making of this cold-holding powerhouse, ensuring the Haul™ lives up to the Tundra name. The Tundra® Haul™ is now the toughest cooler on two wheels.

Roadie 20
Small but mighty, the YETI Roadie is the best personal cooler you’ll ever find to protect your drinks from the heat. Built with the same hardy one-piece construction and ice-retaining insulation as our Tundra ice chests, this small personal cooler is equipped with a heavy-duty stainless steel handle for better portability.

Hopper & Flip
Ordinary soft-sided coolers are flimsy, frail, and only slightly better at cooling beverages than just leaving them in the shade. But the YETI Hopper is a portable cooler of a different color. No matter where you carry it or how you handle it, the Hopper won’t leak or break. And just like all YETI Coolers, it’s over-engineered to keep ice for days.

Rambler Series
YETI Ramblers are advanced personal drink coolers made from 18/8 stainless steel with double-wall vacuum insulation. Rambler Tumblers will keep your soda or mixed drinks cold twice as long as plastic cups, and make an excellent YETI coffee mug. The Rambler Colster locks in the cold of cans and bottles using a heat-mocking ThermoLock™ Gasket. Available in 20 and 30-ounce sizes.

Rambler Bottles
This stainless steel, double-wall vacuum insulated Rambler will keep your beverage as cold as science allows. But having the frostiest beer in the world doesn’t do you much good if you can’t get it open. YETI bottles are extra-durable and come in a range of sizes that fit in your pocket, in your bar drawer, and even in your cooler. Available in 18, 36 and 64-ounce sizes.

Accessories
Security Cable Lock & Bracket, Beverage Holder, Drain Plug Hose Connection, T-Rex latches, Bottle Opener, Bottle Key, Locking Brackets, Hats, Shirts and MORE!

Stop by J&N Feed and Seed, and see our selection of Yeti coolers, drinkware, and accessories.

Three Steps to a Peaceful Backyard Flock

Wednesday, October 10th, 2018

Pekin Cochin Bantam Hen - organic poultry - free range chicken egg layer

 

 

Have you ever wondered what goes through a chicken’s mind?
Wouldn’t it be helpful if they could say, “My feathers are itchy!” or “I’m bored!”? Though humans and hens don’t speak the same language, simple changes can help backyard flock conversations go smoothly.

As backyard flock owners, we are tasked with becoming chicken whisperers. Keeping a peaceful flock requires us to interpret behaviors to decipher what our chickens are telling us.

During fall and winter when chickens are spending more time in the coop, chicken boredom can bring out changes in behavior, such as pecking.

Chickens are naturally inquisitive, but they don’t have arms and hands to inspect things. They use their beaks to explore instead. Pecking is a natural chicken behavior that allows them to check out their surroundings, including their flock mates.

Though pecking is a natural occurrence, the nature of this chicken pecking behavior can change when birds spend more time inside.

Understanding the difference between curious and aggressive chicken pecking is key to knowing when there is a problem. Not all pecking is bad. When it is gentle, this behavior is fun to watch. If pecking becomes aggressive, it can be problematic to other birds in the flock.

Three tips to keep a peaceful backyard flock:

1. Investigate the reason for pecking.
If the pecking chickens become aggressive, the first tip is to determine if something is causing birds to act out.

Start with a list of questions about the environment: Are the hens too crowded? Do they ever run out of feed or water? Are they too hot or cold? Is there a predator in the area? Is there something outside of the coop that is causing them to be stressed?

After the stressor has been identified, the next step is easy: remove the problem and the aggressive chicken pecking behavior may go away or diminish.

To maintain this newfound peace, make sure your birds have a minimum of 4 square feet indoors and 10 square feet outdoors per bird. Adequate feeder and waterer space is also critical.

If a new hen is added to the flock, there may be a period of uneasiness.

Remember, there will always be some dominance in the flock as part of the pecking order. There are typically one or two boss hens who rule the roost. Once the pecking order is determined, the birds usually live together peacefully.

2. Chickens take baths, too.
The next step to prevent feather picking is to keep birds clean. Chickens take a different type of bath than you might expect. They often dig a shallow hole, loosen up all the dirt and then cover themselves in it.

This process is called a dust bath. Dust bathing is an instinct that helps keep birds clean. On our farm, we make dust baths for our hens by following these three steps: 1. Find a container at least 12 inches deep, 15 inches wide and 24 inches long; 2. Combine an equal blend of sand, wood ash and natural soil; 3. Watch your birds roll around in the bath and clean themselves.

Dust baths can also prevent external parasites such as mites and lice. If external parasites are an issue, supplement your chicken dust baths with a cup or two of food-grade diatomaceous earth.

If you add diatomaceous earth, be sure to mix it in well. Diatomaceous earth can be harmful if inhaled in large amounts. By mixing the diatomaceous earth into the dust bath, it has less probability to become airborne while still helping prevent external parasites.

3. Offer an alternative place for birds to peck.
Next, provide birds something to keep their minds busy. Perhaps the most fun of these three tips is to find chicken toys that bring out their natural instincts.

Interactive objects can make the coop more complex and exciting. Logs, sturdy branches or chicken swings are a few flock favorites. These toys provide unique retreats for hens who may be lower in the pecking order.

Another flock boredom-buster is a block for hens to peck, like the Purina® Flock Block. You can simply place this block in the coop for hens to peck. The block can be a fun experience for hens and prevent chicken boredom when they are spending more time in the coop.

The Purina® Flock Block encourages natural pecking instincts. It also contains whole grains, amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and oyster shell to provide nutrients that contribute to the hen’s well-being.

Want to find a Purina® Flock Block of your own? Find a retail location near you.

Article Attributed to Purina Mills and Dr. Patrick Biggs

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