Friday, June 23, 2017

Sheep find greener pastures.

This time of year our land has no grass and little way to grow grass through the summer months, which is a big problem for sheep! We have not yet found an appropriate vegetable that works for grazers like sheep. So each year we must resort to buying hay (which gets incredibly expensive) or moving the sheep to greener pastures.

Fortunately... This year divine Providence has once again provided for the farms basic needs. We "ran into" a property that is beautiful, available for use, at a good price, and offers more grass than we could possibly need.

So... Here we are at the hottest day of the year so far... First time hitting triple digits, and it's time to load sheep!

I wish we had videos... This is one of most fun activities... Sheep rodeo! You would laugh right along with us at the trial and error as we try new ways to entice sheepish sheep into a small stock trailer.

Highlights from this year:

Dad caught a sheep in the air, mid leap. Not a good idea. Turns out dad finished the leap with her... Ouch!

Hunter did a few rounds with a ram... Thinking he was in charge when the ram was seriously taking the young boy for a ride.

Everett learned how to he a fence post, holding a stretch of not activated electric rope and standing incredibly still as sheep try to figure out what that curious sight is.

Kaelyn and Levi try desperately to close the trailer door when at one point a literal sea of sheep try to load at once with Dad caught in the middle, not realizing it is sheep holding the door open.

Rainey (the llama) decides to take a break down the driveway at one point to reflect on the experience he just witnessed.. them returns to the yard to take a shower. Yes.. llama standing in a yard sprinkler cooling down, refusing to move away. That was a sight!

Dad playing rodeo inside the trailer with a couple dozen sheep that decided the back corner of the trailer is safer than the open door to a pen filled with tall green grass.


At the end of the day, after three trips between our farm and the property... We had all the ewes and youngsters moved. 57 girls and one boy. The 13 Rams stayed at the farm for now. We will figure that out later. The rama can't be with the girls until around August, to prevent having to deal with babies born in the cold muddy period.

All in all a good day!

Now on to soothe the rodeo soreness!








posted from Bloggeroid

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Tonight's menu...

Here is a look at tonight's menu at the farm...

For starters we have a selection of fresh baby greens, a variety of green plants and weeds from the garden. Succulent, just picked with roots and all.

Then we move on to the main course... Our own mix of soaked, sprouted, and fermented grains. Not one grain... but multi grains. And when we say sprouted... We mean really sprouted with 1 inch tails!

Then to finish, a dessert of another batch of greens (weeds).

These guys eat well!


posted from Bloggeroid

Friday, June 16, 2017

Poultry Bedding, well almost!

Here is a quick pic of our poultry bedding... we make it ourself!



We collect brush as goat feed. This can be tree trimmings, landscaping projects, etc. As long as it is grown organically and good for goats to eat, we collect or accept donations and let them have at it! Great source of minerals and nutrition for the goats in milk.  

Once the goats consume all the leaves, small twigs, and bark.. the branches go into a pile to dry. Then through the chipper and into bird bedding!

Please remember to contact us when you are trimming trees, to see if it makes sense to collect it!


Tomatoes Everywhere - but what a day!

Yesterday was a very full day, but with a successful ending... Lots of tomatoes!

We were given almost a thousand tomato starts, needing to be in the ground ASAP. So what do we do? Drop everything and get those plants in the ground!

The "chicken transport" trailer was still together, so we were able to load all the flats of starts into the trailer, utilizing the second deck quite nicely. It was wall to wall plants on both levels!

Then yesterday, the fun started. The first step was to prepare a plot of ground becasue of course, there was none ready! We decided on the original pig pen. It should be decently fertilized, out of the way of other activity, close enough to water, and  "doable" this late in the season.

To till the hard dry clay dirt requires the tiller to be in top shape.. so that meant a couple hours rebuilding the tiller.  The back cover had fallen off while preparing the melon spot (sorry, missed the chance to blog that one), some of the tines were shot, and it was again covered in rogue baling twines. So this was the first order of business.. rebuild the tiller. Sorry again, no pics.. was racing the clock! But we managed to clean the tines, replace the worst ones with the old semi worn tines I had kept from last time, and reattach the cover. Took a couple hours of work.

The tilling went pretty good then... until the 4wd went out on the tractor! Yep, tractors ALWAYS break when you need them most. It's some type of law of nature! The thing is.. with a reverse tine tiller it is possible to turn a hard dry clay pasture into plant-able soil in a couple of passes IF in 4wd, but totally impossible without it! the rear wheels simply dont have the traction required to pull the tines through the hard dirt. There is a weak C-Clip in the driveshaft, which only gets weaker and keeps popping off, letting the splines separate. This happened in the middle of the second pass. So, off to repair the tractor! Unfortunately, I know this repair all too well! Took about an hour underneath and it was all back together.  That allowed just enough  working time to get it barely sufficiently deep for tomatoes before it happened again. Ok, fine.. good enough! Time to move on...

Then the transplanting started... this takes a while. 900 plants?  Takes a system! Fortunately the farmer who grew the starts let us borrow his "auto-transplanter" which is a really great invention.  A tool that cuts a hole just the right size and depth, open the hole, drop a plant in the top, and almost fully buries it.  Pretty nice! We set up an assembly line with the kids and it worked beautifully! The kids loved taking turns dropping the plants into the hopper to let them fall into the hole.  Farm Fun!

Then of course, water... we rushed to build some headers (were out already). Of course the glue got spilled onto the soil, so I was literally dipping the ends of pipes into the liquid glue puddle resting on the soil and successfully gluing the ends on. Quite a site!

We did manage to get the water lines in and "lit up" right at sundown... But didnt get time to fix all the leaks in the one year old lines. Instead, I just turned the water flow very low and let them drip slow all night.  In the morning, they look bright and tall!

The finished product. A patch of about 900 tomato plants getting their first real drink and sun in the "wild". As you notice.. planted VERY close with no stakes or trellis of any kind. We are going for a "natural" tomato patch where the vines "do their thing". Low maintenance!

Believe it or not.. THIS is what the patch looked like just 6 hours earlier! This is the beauty of a reverse tine tiller with 4wd trator. 

The slow watering all night seemed to be just enough to perk them up.

This is the nifty trans-planter tool that we borrowed. What a timesaver!

for the curious

Saturday, June 10, 2017

The Chicken Transport!

What do you do when you need to haul over 300 chickens?  Build a chicken transport!

Thats what we did last weekend... we ran across a golden opportunity to acquire a set of over 300 laying hens that met our standards, so we purchased the entire set to jump start this year's egg harvest.  But getting them home on short notice was quite the challenge.

So....

I turned the stock trailer into a chicken transport with few 2x4s, some pallets, two pieces of vinyl house siding, 2 sections of vinyl lattice, and some bailing wire.  the whole process took about 2 hours and worked beautifully! There are now two floors in the trailer, upper and lower.  And all the wind and escape routes were blocked while providing just enough ventilation.

Here are some pics!

The drivers side finished. The grey is the vinyl siding to block wind and escape route. Right below the siding is the top of the pallets that form the second floor. 

Looking into the rear door. Yes, the door still opens! Across the back is the lattice for ventilation, and a 2x8 to fill the gap (scraps dont always match the perfect size!). Below that is the pallet of the second floor, seemingly hanging in mid air. 

You can see the 2x4s that stretch across from left to right and hold up the pallets. The 2x4s actually just go right through the center of the pallets to hold them. Then 1x1 strips screwed on the inside hold the 2x4s in place. 

View of bottom floor looking from the rear door. The 2x6s on the floor are for when we transport grain pallets, allowing them to slide across the wood floor without hurting it. 

Here is the roomy second floor! Three pallets make this floor an almost perfect fit. Look closely on the edges and you can see the 1x1 strips that hold the 2x4s in place. 

Here is the support setup. 2x4s slid through the window, then 1x1 screwed across them to hold them from sliding in either direction. This provides solid support with no holes in the trailer!

One little patch of lattice covers the leftover hole in the front beyond the siding,. Then.. the ultimate.. a chicken ladder from the bottom to the top made from 2 wire shelves. 
The whole odd setup performed extremely well! We were able to transport about 250 chickens safely and comfortably without any double stacking of passengers. They all made it home perfectly fine.

Sad to dismantle this crude work of art, but it's use is over. Perhaps I will store the pieces away for use in a couple years ?  Who knows!

Watermelons in the ground!

Early this week we planted the watermelons. Three different types this year, red, white and yellow.

Here is a pic of the kids setting the drip lines to sprout the seeds.


This watermelon patch is exactly twice as big as last year. This will provide even more delicious melons to finish the hogs on for the incredible pork flavor only at Little Sprouts!

As of this weekend, the sprouts are mostly up already and looking healthy!

Fava Beans looking good!

The fava beans are growing wonderfully!


They are actually covered in beautiful white flowers now, and lots of tiny beans.

And oooo.. all that goat feed! (weeds) in between the rows. We are harvesting a load per day of beautiful organic goat feed from in between the beans. Some of the weeds are too small to harvest efficiently, but they are growing!

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Bee Swarm #8 ! What a spring!

Amazingly... our one lone hive has now produced 8, yes 8 swarms this spring!

Swarm *7 got away. It landed in a tree for only an hour or so and before we could get set to catch it, they left and traveled over a mile to a new unknown location.  Cant catch them all!

But today, in the midst of feverishly working on another time sensitive project, swarm #8 emerged and landed in a tree in the front yard. This was .. was BIG. the biggest swarm yet.  (sorry, in our haste we did not get any pictures).

We managed to repair one of the old damaged hives, and clean it up in time to catch this one.  IT was an easy catch, simply brushing them into a box worked. We put them into their new home and they immediately went to work. This seemed the strongest queen, attracting the bees from far away as we moved them to the waiting hive. It was quite a sight!

So now, there are not one, but seven working healthy hives on the farm. And.. they are all emerged from the genetics of that one hive! Very calm, efficient, dedicated bees!

We checked the main hive, the one that produced all the others, and it is becoming quite sparse. maybe 1/5 of the number of bees there was originally. checking a few of the combs showed that the swarm had taken most of the honey with them. We took this opportunity to remove some old twisted empty comb so that they can start fresh now.  And WOW.. the little bit of honey left in those combs... nothing short of incredible! The flavor of truly aged honey.. aged in the hive, is indescribable. I have never tasted honey from any store that even comes close!

So stay tuned! as soon as we can, we will be offering what I consider to be... the worlds best honey!

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Bee swarm #6!

Incredibly, that one same hive had produced try another swarm! Number 6 showed up today, 6 in only two weeks. And the are still plenty of bees in the original hive.

We managed to catch these bees. They landed on the fence right by the hive. It was of though, they landed as 3 groups... Large medium and small. First time for that!



The clump in the middle had the queen. She actually showed herself! As I was contemplating which clump to take first, she crawled right out of the center, across a pile of bees for a few inches, then back inside. The worker bees around her went crazy !

So now we have 5 growing hives, all birthed from the one remaining hive that stayed for 3 years without maintenance.

How many more? Who knows! But it is time to repair one of the three damaged hives to catch the next one!

posted from Bloggeroid

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

2 more bee swarms

What a year that is!

That same one hive produced 2 more healthy sized swarms today. The first one landed in that same bush as the other 3. But unfortunately, we didn't have a hive ready to place it, so by the time we assembled a new hive, it left. I mean... Minutes before. If it had waited 15 more minutes we could have captured it. But alas... It took off. We followed the mass of bees for a few hundred yards and then lost them. Very sad.

But.... We came home and were complaining about missing that one when Brenda announced... "There is another cloud of bees!"

Sure enough , just a couple hours after the fourth swarm there arose a fifth!

This time we were ready. Hunter and I scrambled into our gear and got busy. This one landed on the small oak tree right by by the now infamous "bee landing bush". It was a simple matter to cut the branch and place the whole swarm inside a brand new hive.

So now we have 3 hives along the driveway, one inside the gate, and the original hive. Plus the one that got away, makes a total of 5 swarms inside of 2 weeks!



Tonight we must move the hives into position away from the driveway.

posted from Bloggeroid

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Bees Everywhere!

We have been blessed with an unusual event! Out one bee hive has exploded into 4 now!

Last week it produced a swarm... and we caught it in the bush by the driveway, used our improvised bee hive vacuum to get them into a hive safe and sound.

The remainder of the hive spent the rest of the week hanging out behind the original hive. "bearding" it is called, when most of the bees come outside either due to overcrowding or high temps. We watched them for a few days and they seems peaceful, just hanging out outside the hive.

The original hive, after the first swarm, with quite the "beard" going!

Then, this morning (sunday) we witnessed another swarm arising from the same hive! It swarmed up and quickly landed on the same post, same spot, as the one last week. We had not even taken time to move the second hive from the position where we caught that first swarm. The second swarm didn't seem to care, they just collected up on the post and formed a really nice mound of bees.

While we were preparing to collect those bees, an emergency arose in town that we couldn't miss. Hesitantly we loaded up and ran into town for a couple hours. On the way home we were hoping and praying that the second swarm was still sitting on the post. As we pulled into the driveway, there were bees everywhere! Was the swarm moving? Had we missed it?

But it didn't look right... something was up...

Sure enough, the second swarm was still mounded up in the same spot quiet as can be, but the air was filled with bees! We parked and ran over to investigate. To our surprise, there was yet another swarm in progress! A third swarm from that one original hive within a week, two on this same day! This swarm was settling on the back side of that same bush!

Ok.. so.. change of plan! We had built a second bee hive vacuum to collect the second swarm, but that swarm was mounded up on one side of the post in plain sight. It could be captured with just a bee brush and a box. So that's what we did! After moving the hive from the first swarm out of the way a bit, we swept the second swarm into a box and checked for the queen. She was in there! We could tell from the action of the worker bees. So that swarm went into a cleaned and waiting hive just a few feet from the original hive.

By this time the third swarm had settled into the bush and was quietly waiting for us. The many branches made it difficult to extract, so we decided to use the bee hive vacuum that we had made this morning for the second hive (confused yet? we were too!) We moved the taped up hive into position beside the bush and connected the vacuum. This hive was a newer design and much better sealed, with a larger entrance hole. It worked even better as a vacuum box! We had the entire third swarm into the hive within about 20 minutes. After removing the tape and vacuum, it was clear that the queen was in this hive also.

Success! We now had 2 new hives along the driveway and a newly populated one next to the original hive that birthed them all! Four healthy hives from one, in less than a week.  Not bad!


Here are the two hives, housing swarms #1 and #3 along the driveway.  The bush in the middle is the now infamous "bee catcher" bush

Closeup of swarm #1 in their hive. If you look closely you can see spots where the nice white comb shows through the bees inside. There is about 6 or 8 combs built already.

Swarm #2 in thier hive, picture taken from inside. They are hanging out in the front left corner... planning their new home. 

Friday, May 5, 2017

Some garden planted just in time

We managed to get one section of garden in the ground just before the rain storm arrived. And I mean just before! We were finishing up as the lightening chased us inside.



This section has the original fava bean test plus now:

Chard
Kohlrobi
Cabbage

Hopefully this weather will help to sprit quickly ! We are hoping to get the rest of this section planted before the next rain, in about a week.

There fava beans are growing nicely to! It looked like a 90 % sprout rate.


posted from Bloggeroid

Sunday, April 30, 2017

DIY Bee Vacuum, Direct to Hive!

Continuing from the last post, of the bee swarm that we watched happen from our one remaining hive...

The bees had landed on the old post inside a bush along the driveway. But then they shifted from the top of the post to the bottom of the bush!  The mound of bees was partly in the grass, situated inside 3 thick trunks of the bush.  An impossible situation for any normal recovery.

So, we built a special bee vacuum! Not really a vacuum, more of a method of moving the bees into a hive right on the spot.

Here is the starting point... a clump of bees in the grass and shrub trunk. 
First thing to do was to move a fresh top bar hive within a few feet of the swarm without disturbing them. this worked perfectly!

The top bar hive is placed to the right of the swarm, within a couple feet. We placed the divider in the middle to give an appropriate sized home for this little swarm. 
The next step was to seal the hive. Yes, seal it. This was accomplished with two kitchen garbage bags across the top, and duct tape all around. The tape sealed the edges of the bags to the outside of the hive. plus the entrance and vent holes. We even sealed around the glass viewing window. the only opening was one bar, removed to make room for the vacuum hose that would bring the bees. The hose fit perfectly through the slot left by one bar, and that was securely taped into position.

Here is the completely sealed hive, with vacuum hose for bee extraction in the middle and shop vac on the right. 

The hose for the shop vac was taped over a vent hole, that had screen inside to prevent the bees from getting into the vacuum. To hold the hose in position, we taped it to the fence right behind (past the right of the pic)

Here is a closeup of the vacuum hose connection. You can see the extra top bar holding the lid just open enough to provide easy access. 
Now, just turn on the shop vac and here we go ! The vacuum was perfect. Just enough to barely pull the bees into the hose, but not hurt them. In fact, we had to stop multiple times to "clear" the bee clog inside the hose. The little bees kept grabbing the ribs of the hose and each other.. instant clog! Otherwise it worked perfectly!

Hunter takes a turn sucking up bees into the hive

Here you ca see the hose taped to the fence to hold the weight. 
The silly looking contraption worked amazingly well! We managed to get 90% of the bees into the hive, including the queen, with virtually no causalities! The hive remained so calm for most of the operation that we didnt even need a bee suit or gloves.  Thy got a little flustered when the queen disappeared up the hose, but otherwise they just stayed happily crawling around or buzzing around.

The bee vacuum at work, almost done!

When we were all done, we had to remove hte hose to prevent the bees from escaping or gluing it shut! So we did pulled off the tape around the hose and quickly, very quickly removed the hose and dropped the bar back into place. The bees almost started spilling out to attack us, but things went just well enough. Everyone was tired and testy, so we just walked away to give them a chance to calm down.

Here is the after shot, all bees inside but not totally cleaned up yet. They got a little testy when we started pulling the tape off. We decided they had been through enough and waited till nightfall to finish

Now isnt this peaceful! by evening, all was quiet, we cleaned everything up and the bees are busily building their new home inside. 

The gently buzz of happy bees hard at work... a few scouts coming and going... all is well!
The bee vacuum was such a success, we are talking about ways to take this on the road and collect wild swarms this year to populate all the hives again.

Little Sprouts is back int he honey business!

Bee Swarm!

In the middle of the Friday morning we discovered that our one remaining bee hive was swarming!

You may recall, we stopped our bee operation when the GMO alfalfa went in near us, becasue we could not guarantee that the bees would stay out of the alfalfa field and the excessive  chemicals used on the GMO crop. That effectively shut down our bee operation and honey products for a few years. During that time, we had one very healthy hive that just hung in there... year after year. And this spring it is stronger than ever.  So.. as all hives do, it swarmed to make a new generation.

Here is the top bar hive that they came out of, under the larger tree on the left. Where the eventually ended up landing on the first day is the shrub you can see right in the middle of this pic, along the driveway. If you look closely you can see thousands of bees in the air. 

Here they are starting to gather up around the shrub. There is actually a 4x4 post right next to the shrub that the queen landed on, In this pic you can see the cloud of bees hovering around the bush. 

These are the guys that stayed behind to make a new queen and start a new generation. They clumped on the back of the hive for a few hours then went inside to get to work by nightfall. 
It was fascinating to be there to watch the entire process from start to finish. We were able to clearly see each stage as it happened:


  1. The bees clumped outside the hive, waiting for the queen to make her appearance from inside. 
  2. Once she emerged, she takes off flying and all the clumped bees joined her in the air, making a cloud of bees.
  3. The cloud expanded to maybe 100 feet as they sought the queen's direction. 
  4. The queen lands on the top of the post inside that bush, and the cloud followed her and condensed down to a clump of bees on the post.
  5. Most bees clumped to protect the queen, but a few scouts started flying around looking for a new home. 


The whole process only took about 4 hours start to finish.  They only move maybe a hundred feet, but it was a tightly choreographed operation!

Here is a video showing the start of the swarming.

video

And this video shows them landing on the post. Listen closely to the awesome sound of a swarm of bees!

video


Now the race was on to assemble a new hive and capture the swarm  so that we could keep them. We are reentering the honey production business this year, since the GMO alfalfa is now illegal in the county and must be removed. We are once again able to make the best raw honey possible!

IF... we can catch this swarm.

At first, we thought  the challenge would be removing the queen from the holes in the old post. But no. By the end of the day, the swarm had move from the top of the post to the BOTTOM!


Now that is a challenge! There seems no easy way to get them out from between the branches and the grass.  So, the only option was.. a bee vacuum! We don't have one, (although I always wanted a "real" bee vacuum) So we decided to build one. Not just any bee vacuum, but one specifically designed for this particular situation...

Check out the next post for the answer!

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Fava beans are up!

They are here! Our first fava bean sprouts.

It seemed a bit of touch and go with a few sprouts appearing each day for almost 2 weeks, but all of a sudden.. boom! Bean sprouts!



They look healthy and consistent!



The rows are not necessarily straight... But hey... Perfect rows aren't everything!

posted from Bloggeroid

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Quick Update on things for April

Sorry, no pictures on this post. Quite honestly... we have been a bit too busy to keep up with reporting on things.  So here is a quick update:

1. The fave beans are sprouted, reasonably well. Not as good as hoped, but not bad. The week of warmer rains might bring a few more to the surface... hopefully.

2. We did manage to get the entire main garden tilled this week, just in time for the rain. As always, the plan is to till as soon as dry enough, then let it sit through a warm rain (at least not cold) to sprout initial weed set, then a light till when it dries again and plant.  We have the first tilling done, now waiting for the rain, sprouting, retilling and planting. For the curious, the main garden this year is right at 1 1/2 acres in size.

3. We have 2 more areas hoping to get planted before summer, the old goat pen and the present pig pen. Those two are well fertilized and ready to go. But, the goat pen is much too muddy yet and the pig pen is.. well.. housing pigs yet! Plus the pigs totally tore down one side of fencing, held up by a pallet, so that must be replaced.

4. There are 2 more potential areas to plant this year... one has been housing horses for several years, and the other is the original winter garden spot. both should grow well.

5. The goats are almost all into milk now, ready for the season.  It has meant some serious restructuring of the barn to accommodate the bulk of the herd all at once, but it is slowly coming together.

6. We did manage to get the milking barn rebuilt, cleaned up from the winter, and useable again.

7. The new chicken flock is doing well, we ended up with right at 150 young birds that look healthy and happy. They will be coming out of the brooders this week and into their first job of fertilizing one garden area.

8. The new guinea fowl arrive this week, which means we will be retiring the old flocks to start anew, providing some excellent meat and organs for sale.

9. We have tested last year's home made "feed" of dehydrated zuchinni and greens. It stored exceptionally well! opening the buckets after 6 months revealed perfectly dry, aromatic, well preserved vegetables! The chickens were the first recipients of this marvelous free feed and they love it as long as it is ground a bit into smaller chunks. And their eggs... WHOA! the best eggs we have ever produced! Thick orange yolks, well developed whites, perfect aroma and a beautiful soft flavor. These are , in my humble opinion, the best eggs I have ever seen! And that is without the bug barn in operation, just zuchinni and greens! It looks like the experiment is a smashing success!

10. This week with the rains we hope to spend time finishing the barn insides and getting the chickens moved into their spring positions. Then it's office work! We have lots of paperwork to do to support the new may announcements!

I think that's about it for now. Please forgive us for not keeping up with emails this week, the pleasant weather break meant some long days, and enough hours in the sun to build a nice sunburn! The rains means that things will settle a bit and we can get back on top of things.

Thanks for all your support!

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Spring is here! Fava Beans in the Ground!

Spring has finally arrived and we are busy getting seed into the ground for this year's animal feed harvests.  Yes it is a tad early, but some plants are fine germinating in the cooler weather. This includes the new trial crop for 2017, FAVA BEANS!

The beans are a good 1/2 to 3/4 inch across, sometimes as much as an inch! That is the largest bean I have ever seen!

Here is a pile of beans spilled out on the grass


We are trying heriloom fava beans to use as animal feed. They are very starchy beans that grow in HUGE pods with HUGE beans! The nutritional stats look good, and the weather profile looks acceptable for an early spring planting.

So this week we planted 6 rows of 60 yards each in fava beans. There are no drip lines yet,  which is unique for our system. But the weather should see some nice bouts of rain yet, enough to sprout these seeds, so we literally just tilled up the driest spot available and put seeds in. If the rain doesn't materialize over the weekend, then we will install drip lines.


These beans are too large to fit any of the hand push automatic seeders, so we needed another way to avoid the planting backache. The answer? a 3/4 inch PVC pipe! I held the pipe at one end, placed the bottom where I wanted the seed, and dropped one down. It would land in a small impression, and Hunter would come along to bury and compress them. This was quite efficient! Occasionally the beans would not fit, but not too often. Usually they slid right down with a song and a thud.

Our homemade fava bean planter. Just a piece of 3/4 inch pipe. Drop one at the top as you walk down the row and it is easy to space them out without bending over. 

Then just follow along and bury each one by hand.
We managed to turn a 60 yard by 120 yard patch of pasture into a garden, with 6 60 yard rows of fava beans planted, all in one day. We just finished as the sun set.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Sheep and grass

The sheep had same quality time with green grass over the weekend! The ground is finally drying out enough for them to graze without mud puddles.



This patch will soon become the first spring garden as soon as it can be tilled, so why waste the grass?  We will let the sheep consume it until it's time to till and plant.

posted from Bloggeroid