Happy Easter! Now is the time to celebrate all things cute and fluffy, like my amazing guinea pigs Merlin and Hermes! Here they are feasting on one of their favourites – lettuce!
Now that it’s warm enough, they can run around in the conservatory as well as in their usual run, which looks like this:
And here’s Hermes, modelling one of their favourite toys that I made by recycling an old pair of jogging bottoms that had holes in them!
In the garden – guinea pig treats and nesting material for birds
A lot of my growing decisions this year have been influenced by what the guinea pigs like to eat. They get through an amazing amount of salad for such small animals… I’m growing them carrots, lettuce, cucumbers, courgettes, tomatoes, peppers and parsley!
If you want to see what’s safe for guinea pigs to eat and how often they can have each type of food during the week for optimum health, this website, the Happy Cavy safe food list, is brilliant.
Dandelions aren’t many gardeners’ friends, although I’ve always let some of them survive for the benefit of the bees. But now they are very much my friend, as the guinea pigs absolutely love to eat the leaves as a treat!
You need to be careful as there are lots of common plants that are toxic to guinea pigs – daisies for instance – so if you can’t let them run safely in the garden, you can always grow your own grass and other treats for them in trays indoors. Galen’s Garden makes it easy to order seeds to grow things especially for your furry friends! Merlin and Hermes love the oat and barley grass. I’m also growing them some yarrow to try this year.
The grass was much taller than this, but it’s been significantly and enthusiastically grazed since then!
The guinea pigs are doing their part to help the garden grow too, with the hundreds of poo pellets they manage to produce every day! As guinea pig poo rots down and releases nutrients slowly, it can be applied directly around plants without burning the roots. Alternatively, you can mix it with some water and create your very own liquid fertiliser – this is next on my list of projects!
Also in the garden this month I’ve been hanging out some alpaca fibre in fat square cages for the birds to take for their nests. I’ve been amazed at how quickly it’s been going down – some chicks somewhere are going to hatch out into a very warm, cosy nest! It’s a great way to watch your garden birds in action, and so funny to watch them flying away with their beaks absolutely stuffed with fluff!
In the bathroom – Easter egg soap
I found some silicone egg moulds in a pound shop so I couldn’t resist making Easter egg soap. I added a small amount of yellow colouring to melt and pour soap, and poured it into two of the moulds, as each mould creates half an egg. Once they had solidified, I melted another small amount of soap , poured it on top of one of them, and then pushed the other half down on top of it so they stuck together. I paired the egg soap with a pom pom chick in part of an egg box with a ribbon as an Easter gift.
It’s been a busy day eating for the guinea pigs, so it must be time for a nap…