RicelandMeadows


Barn Renovation 2021
April 21, 2021, 11:24 am
Filed under: April 2021 | Tags: , , ,

April 21, 2021

Our busy spring continues to roll on. The barn renovation project too is going well. The old overhang has gotten a facelift. The overhang will be divided into thirds. Each third will become a large box stall. The stalls will be safe, warm and well lit.

Each stall will have a door that opens into the main part of the existing barn aisleway. The new arrangement will allow for great air flow, very important to horses. It will also give me the advantage to see each horse at a glance. The entire herd will be able to see and interact with each other. Feeding, cleaning, harnessing and any daily chore will be made easier by these new changes.

The box stalls will be a size of about 16 by 10 feet. There is a lot remaining to do, but we are well started on this new project. There are lots of behind the scenes things going on. These little things help to keep the project moving along well. Things like ordering special trim, figuring how to best utilize our native lumber during the high cost of conventional lumber prices and keeping the work area cleaned up ready for the next part of the project. This attention to detail, keeps the project moving along even when the job looks idle.

This project has to take a backseat to daily chores, fence line cleaning, and the ever present firewood job that maple syrup making demands. We are also waiting, somewhat patiently, for our new Suffolk foal who is due any day. Stay tuned for updates.



Safe at Home

April 12, 2021

After 21 years, our barn needs some upgrading and renovation. This is our hay mow floor. The original one, made form OSB plywood, had a few spongy spots and even a couple holes. I didn’t want anyone to fall through or even step through the declining wood. We laid new boards right over the top of the OSB after fixing the holes. The new lumber is native hardwood Beech with a section of white pine. The floor is safe, stable and will last me for a very long time.

New doors will be one of the next projects. I am also removing a door on one end. I will install a window in its place. Things change as the years go by. We now fill our mow with 4×4 round bales of hay instead of the labor intensive small square bales. Finding help to put up the small squares had become a problem. The round bales I can put in with our skid steer. I just need a guy upstairs to roll them into place. The mow will hold 30 bales. It supplies the hay needed for the worst part of our winter. I simply stand the bales on end and peel off what I need. Its almost like feeding loose hay.

I am also making changes to our east overhang. This has been a run-in shed for cattle and sheep for 21 years. I have decided to house those animals in other areas around the farm. This will allow for big roomy box stalls to be built under the overhang. We need them for our Suffolk mares and foals. The barns footprint won’t change, but its usefulness will be much enhanced.

It will be quite an upgrade once the project is complete. We sold our flock of sheep to help finance the project. Sheep may be back in our future especially young lamb for our customers. We will continue to finish lambs on our pastures seeded for that purpose, but the ewes are gone…for now.

The farm is evolving as we transition into breeding and preserving this rare breed, the Suffolk Punch horse. I want to ensure their safety and mine as we go. :o) Stay tuned for updates as this project progresses.