|Left: Beef. Right: Dairy.|
Sunday, October 26, 2014
There is construction going on to the west and east of the ranch. That always stirs up wildlife and gets them on the move to new places. Unfortunately for this big guy, taking up residence underneath my camper where my dog naps was not a good choice:
In recent months my neighbors have not been as friendly as when we first took ownership of the property. They like to watch me. A lot. And talk about what they see to each other. One of our ramadas is used to host private barbecues and gatherings from time to time and since I don't enjoy people staring at me or my guests, I decided there needed to be a privacy screen installed. I'm always on a budget and I have a lot of leftover pallets around that came in with hay deliveries over the years, so rather than take them to the trash, Mom and I repurposed them into a country style privacy screen for the party spot.
Dark brown, crumbly compost is an excellent growing medium for your garden. If you have farmy critters that make you fresh pies and beans in the form of their doodoo, try this easy method to get that stuff transformed into soil--fast.
What You Need:
35 gallon plastic/rubber trash can (preferably black) with lid
Drill and large drill bit
Animal Poop and/or hay/straw/plant waste
Directions: Drill vent holes on the bottom and sides of your trash can. Fill with poo and plant waste, place lid on top, set in the sun to cook down. This process goes fast here in the desert heat. The manure will cook down to half its size within a week. You can build raised beds with it, add to existing beds or mix with soil. I've been using it to build up my experimental hugelkutur beds in the Three Sisters Garden and it's making pretty fast work of covering up a lot of wood real estate.
Monday, September 22, 2014
I have a lot of fleece that needs to be washed and processed so it can be spun. I have a lot of trash cans turned compost bins cooking up some black gold in anticipation of planting time. And I have a lot of empty garden beds because summer killed everything.
On the bright side, there was this big, beautiful, orange dragonfly sunning itself this morning. That makes everything better, right?
Tuesday, September 2, 2014
Unfortunately, this poor girl had to wait two weeks after her buddies were sheared because I did something stupid. If you don't ever have to lasso anything, count yourself lucky. If you do ever have to lasso and you don't know what you're doing, remember rule number one. ALWAYS WEAR GLOVES. It seems simple really. Common sense even. But sometimes you might get really excited because you've got the rope and the sheep is like RIGHT THERE. And you know you can just wham bam lasso that sheep on the very first toss.
But trust me, a rope burn hurts. It can rip off your skin and leave you with blisters and pain for two weeks straight. You'll be real embarrassed about how stupid you were for tossing that lasso even if you did catch the sheep on the first try...
And leave poor sheep number four for the day when your hand heals all up and you can actually use it again for regular day-to-day stuff like grasping a pen, typing on a keyboard, milking your goat or cow--or holding on to the steering wheel of your truck. Let's not even talk about sewing or handshakes. Ew handshakes with a rope-burned zombie apocalypse hand. Gross!
So two weeks later, sheepie number four was quite happy to see me. I think she remembered that I gave out free haircuts. She stood right there, still and eyeing me when I (with my gloves on) gently dropped the lasso around her neck. She didn't even move when I tied the other end to the post. She was a good girl the whole time and it only took me about 20 minutes to baldify her and return her back to her buddies.
And I highly recommend keeping superglue handy as an instant bandage. It helped me so much. I wouldn't have been able to shear a single sheepie that day if I hadn't glued the heck out of myself that morning.
RULE #1 of Lassoing: Always wear your gloves.