RicelandMeadows


Pot of Gold
My Pot ofGold

My Pot of Gold

May 31, 2015

It’s hard to believe that we will say good-bye to the month of May today, but it is true. After several extra shifts at work, a long endless list of chores and some rainy weather, I am just a touch behind. I will be happy anyway! The rains have pushed the pastures and hay fields to grow lush and green. It has watered many transplanted plants and is nourishing the growing speltz as it makes its heads of grain.

I work best with a list of stuff to do and pushed for time. What luck! 😮 This year I am right on target. The warm soil will soon get planted with this years garden. A few early plants are growing well and I am sure the main garden will be off and growing soon. I have yet to plant a small field of dent corn for the animals. This small field is mostly to grow next years seed. I saved some nice ears from the best plants. These seeds will provide next years seed with vitality and tailor made for our area. Each year they develop into corn best suited for our area…wonderful process!

Our boar is in with a couple new gilts. They are getting to know each other, sharing meals and sleeping places. In no time at all…they will be sharing families. Next week the entire pig herd will go out on summer pasture. The sows will have their babies in makeshift huts in the open air. The piglets will be born in nests made from straw, weeds and long grass. The little ones will soon follow momma all over the field playing, rooting and nursing in the sunshine and open space.

I am about to enjoy a few days of time off from my off farm job. The projects list will be checked off. I have made many strides in preliminary work. I should be able to whack many things off that list, including some time for family and friends. My farm work pleases me, relieves stress and makes me whole. It is a wonderful thing to know your place in the universe and I truly have found mine.



Animal Corn 2014

2014 off to a good start

2014 off to a good start


June 23, 2014

This year I went back to a tried and true variety of field corn for my animals. I used a hybrid for the last two years and had crop failures both years. I will blame the weather, first year drought, last year constant rain and weed pressure. I can’t help but wonder, if this open pollenated corn might have fared better even in those stress years.

Three years ago I planted this corn. Three years ago at harvest time I had large twelve inch ears on tall stalks. My expense that year totaled $140.00 per acre. Those costs included the seed, organic fertilizer and some fuel. The corn produced 90 bushels per acre of ear corn plus, the fodder that the animals ate almost completely to the ground.

My largest cost that year was the organic fertilizer at $100.00 per acre. I didn’t have enough of my own compost that year, so had to buy some “plant food”. I feel that I still made out very well. I had my seed for next year, corn in the crib and quite a bit of dry matter feed in the fodder. The patch had been cultivated with the horses, costing me only my time … and time using horses is an asset to me 😮

Last year’s corn crop cost me $410.00 per acre, my yield was less than 20 bushels per acre. I only recovered any because I was able to turn cattle and hogs into the short, stressed, standing corn to harvest it themselves. I don’t think a silver tongued salesmen will ever sway me again… no matter what the weather!

Our June has been a wet one again. The crops are all planted and so far so good. I am looking forward to making hay while watching the corn grow. The horse drawn cultivator is ready to go, hopefully it will all work out.