Signal of the Coming Months
November 6, 2021, 9:15 am
Filed under: November 2021 | Tags: , ,

November 6, 2021

We have had a couple mornings of cool temperatures with frost on the rooftops and even one morning with a skiff of snow. Today was different. The water puddles were frozen over and the whole scene was white. The killing frost that signals the end of the growing season is here.

After a six day stretch of rainy weather, where the rainfall total was over five inches, we are finally enjoying some dry weather. The harvest is continuing. The fields are saturated making it difficult for large machinery. I am getting along slow but steady using the horses. They are making some deep hoofprints, but the wagon ruts are minimal. I am husking 2 rows at a time. This lets me move over a wagon width each time I make a round. I am keeping the loads light which also helps to make less impact on the field.

If everything goes well, we should finish picking the corn by supper time tonight. We used one of the young horses yesterday as part of her education. There is a lot of starting and stopping during this job, making it a good teaching opportunity. The youngster did well and we kept her lesson short. She will make a work horse very soon.

The growing speltz looks sleepy covered in this frosty blanket. The leaves are falling quickly and the deer breeding season is in full swing. This tells me to get my butt moving because winter will soon be upon us. I have just a little more wood to cut and split for next years maple syrup season. I think I will finish just in time. One thing for sure, Mother Nature is showing her signs and signals. I just need to pay attention! Oh yeah, and the clocks turn back an hour tonight too.

A Nip In The Air
September 15, 2015, 7:00 am
Filed under: September 2015 | Tags: , , , ,

Autumn is closing in...

Autumn is closing in…

September 15, 2015

After several weeks of hot, dry weather, we got a very welcomed three inches of rain. The rains came mostly slow and steady over two and a half days. The ground sucked up the moisture and the grass turned green again. The entire landscape was refreshed. The cool weather that followed the rain, felt good to this thick blooded farmer. I like working when the temperature struggles to hit 70 degrees F.

The cool weather, however, is a signal that Autumn will soon be upon us. The cold wet rains will soon make farming and harvest time a challenge for us all. I am trying to make the best use of every day… more like the ant than the grasshopper. I have managed to direct seed 6.5 acres of “horse hay”, “timothy/trefoil”. The hay seed planted is an old standby for good dry hay, but the varieties are new. The timothy is a wide leaf late maturing type. The trefoil is a fine stemmed, vigorous type that resembles alfalfa. These seeds will do well on my clay soils and make a hay crop for many years.

Yesterday, I started plowing the ground where our speltz crop will be planted, in the hope of having that job done by early next week.. We are putting the gardens to bed for winter and planting cover crops in them. The landscape plants around farm and garden are being trimmed, dead headed and weeded for one last time. The lawn, thanks to the recent rain, is being mowed and trimmed. The animals were moved to new pastures yesterday, while their main pasture rests and regrows for a few weeks.

I purchased some ear corn from an Amish farmer friend. I will be bringing it home soon. The corn is local, a good hybrid and non-GMO. Some folks say it doesn’t matter, but it matters to me ­čś«

This corn will be the main feed for my sow herd this winter. I didn’t grow any this year due to schedule┬ádemands at my off farm job. I am actually happy, because for this area, corn growing this year was a challenge to say the least. I will miss the corn fodder, but its a small price to pay for the loss of investment that I avoided by not planting at all.

Today, September is half over. The frosts will soon be changing leaves, ending the growing season and sending the wild deer into breeding season. In the meantime, I will work my butt off, along with my horses’ as we work hard while the nip is in the air.

How Now Brown Cow?
October 12, 2014, 7:42 am
Filed under: October 2014 | Tags: , , , ,


Rachel chills out

Rachel chills out

October 12, 2014

This morning we woke up to a very hard frost. Today marks the end of the growing season here on our farm. The leaves have been turning for a couple of weeks, but this frost will turn the woods into a colorful bouquet. The cows pasture will now quit growing and the lawns can be mowed for the last time.

We have a brown steer. I call him Charlie Brown. His purpose is to fill our freezer with… ground “Chuck”. He is ready to go, so now that the summer grazing season is coming to a close, Charlie and a few others will be moved off the pastures permanently. Some of our cows are calving now. We have one new baby on the ground as I write. She is camera-shy, so no photo…yet.

I still plan to move and replant some strawberries, divide the rhubarb and get a bed ready for some asparagus roots in the spring. Also , I have plans for a place for some concord grape rootstock. It seems funny to be planting at the end of the growing season, but that is how it goes, nature too plans for next year…ever notice all the acorns?