March 13, 2014 Farm News

The weekly photo spot at 2 p.m. Wednesday during the blizzard.  The snow is getting pretty thick on the ground by now but the two vehicles I saw go by on the road at that time were not going slow.

The weekly photo spot at 2 p.m. Wednesday during the blizzard. The snow is getting pretty thick on the ground by now but the two vehicles I saw go by on the road at that time were not going slow.

Earlier in the week, warm temperatures allowed for making snow men and snow forts, both of which at this time of the year are doomed to a very short existence.

Earlier in the week, warm temperatures allowed for making snow men and snow forts, both of which at this time of the year are doomed to a very short existence.

As I write this mid morning on Wednesday, winter is doing it’s best at one spectacular last fling.  Lots of snow falling, a strong north east wind blowing and the temperature falling slowly but steadily with the prediction of -18C overnight.  What do we have ?  Seven or eight days ’til the vernal equinox ?  The equinox, the start of

Snow goose (Really a Pilgrim gander) never seems to mind that the wind is howling and the snow is blinding. So long as he has water and some feed he will just pull up his feet and tuck his head in his wing and rest while the weather does it's worst.

Snow goose (Really a Pilgrim gander) never seems to mind that the wind is howling and the snow is blinding. So long as he has water and some feed he will just pull up his feet and tuck his head in his wing and rest while the weather does it’s worst.

the spring season; and with it comes the promise of new growth, new birth, rebirth, a fresh start for us farmers. This will likely be the last of the wintry blasts and though we are probably in for more snow storms they will mostly be short lived and the snow will be gone quick.  Friday is going to be warmer so a lot of today’s snow will evaporate then.  We have over the past week had a very large amount of the over winter

The horses are sheltered from the worst of the wind. The snow will stay unmelted on their well insulated backs. They are dreaming of warmer pastures.

The horses are sheltered from the worst of the wind. The snow will stay unmelted on their well insulated backs. They are dreaming of warmer pastures.

Our mare is at least 24 years old and still looks in good condition in spite of her age and a harsh winter.  Warm pasture is much to be preferred.

Our mare is at least 24 years old and still looks in good condition in spite of her age and a harsh winter. Warm pasture is much to be preferred.

snow disappear.

Chickens are doing better now that the day length is increasing and the weather has mostly been warmer the past week.  We have been leaving their door open most days and on the warmest, sunniest days the chickens will wander about outside.  The number of eggs laid each day has been increasing though the lay

rate is far below what it could be.

Horses are still doing o.k. and they are putting on more weight though still a bit thinner than they should be.  They are not that keen on winter, and would rather be munching nice green grass in a sunny warm June pasture.  We are looking at another team for the heavy work and we’ll use our current older team for very

Tippy, our Milking Shorthorn waiting for her morning hay and her little bit of grain before being milked.  She is a very nice looking cow, about 6 years old now.

Tippy, our Milking Shorthorn waiting for her morning hay and her little bit of grain before being milked. She is a very nice looking cow, about 6 years old now.

light work.  More on a new team next week.

Cows are doing o.k. too though the milkers are a bit down on their milk production.  Again the cold weather and not the very best hay.  We have had to bring the cows into the barn as they wrecked a gate and their fencing at the one spot.  Everything is frozen in and the electric fencing is ineffective with the snow

There is a flock of maybe 30 of these birds which come down to feed at horse droppings and spilled grain from the horses feed.  We are not sure just what species these are but they sure are talkative little guys and gals.

There is a flock of maybe 30 of these birds which come down to feed at horse droppings and spilled grain from the horses feed. We are not sure just what species these are but they sure are talkative little guys and gals.

cover and cold.

The major work done for the vegetable growing department was to recover most of the greenhouse roof with new plastic.  The next step is to clean up the greenhouse, build new tables, new trays for growing seedlings and during the next warm spell gather more compost

The 14 week old Maremma puppy with the orphaned lamb, his lamb.  Note the lambs foot on the dogs paw.

The 14 week old Maremma puppy with the orphaned lamb, his lamb.
Note the lambs foot on the dogs paw.

for our seed starting soil mix.

Maremma or to give the full breed name, Cane da pastore Maremmano-Abruzzese, is a sheep dog breed whose origins are in those northern regions of Italy.  They are bred to guard sheep from predators such as wolves, coyotes, other dogs, foxes, hawks and eagles and people trying to steal from the shepherds flock.  We

Maremma, Quincy with his lamb and Briar.  He was all over this poor lamb and we did have to separate them.

Maremma, Quincy with his lamb and Briar. He was all over this poor lamb and we did have to separate them.

William (3 and a half) gives relative size to a 14 week old Maremma puppy.  These dogs love sheep and little children but find older kids and adults to be suspicious entities.

William (3 and a half) gives relative size to a 14 week old Maremma puppy. These dogs love sheep and little children but find older kids and adults to be suspicious entities.

brought home a 14 week old Maremma puppy on Sunday.  He has been living with sheep since he was 4 weeks old and as soon as we got him home he was put in with our sheep.  He of course seen them as family, as he should.  He will bond with the flock and they will be his family to protect.  The sheep however did not immediately see it that way though they are slowly coming around to the idea.  They are very wary of dog like critters.  It is part of their DNA and they have been spooked too many times on pasture over the years by coyotes looking for a warm and woolly meal.  We did have to separate the puppy from the lamb he is pictured with as he chewed on the lambs ears.  This was likely a puppy thing but not great for this lamb which is an orphaned lamb being bottle fed and still not doing near

Lauren, Maremma, and lamb. They all have a lot of fun with each other.

Lauren, Maremma, and lamb. They all have a lot of fun with each other.

as well as he should be. The pup really likes to snuggle with the lambs and sheep but for now the sheep will keep some distance.  It is working though.

CSA shares are still available so do contact us as soon as you can if you would like to get a

One more photo of dog and lamb.  they both were quite happy together and at this point the only sheep that would get any where near the dog.

One more photo of dog and lamb. they both were quite happy together and at this point the only sheep that would get any where near the dog.

share for the 2014 summer/fall growing season.  Look at the “Our CSA Program” page in this website for all the information and do not hesitate to e-mail or phone us if you have any other questions.

Lauren and the lamb and the dog eating dinner.  the dog stays in the pen with the sheep day and night. He stays with the sheep and where they go he goes and protects them.

Lauren and the lamb and the dog eating dinner. the dog stays in the pen with the sheep day and night. He stays with the sheep and where they go he goes and protects them.

Some of this year to date lamb crop. The dog is just a few feet to the right out of the picture but the sheep are relaxed and moving about the pen.

Some of this year to date lamb crop. The dog is just a few feet to the right out of the picture but the sheep are relaxed and moving about the pen.

Another shot of the sheep and lambs. Lambs are quiet here but often they will be bouncing around bunting and chasing one another, jumping on sheep's backs and from back to back and generally having a lot of fun.

Another shot of the sheep and lambs. Lambs are quiet here but often they will be bouncing around bunting and chasing one another, jumping on sheep’s backs and from back to back and generally having a lot of fun.

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