Sunday, May 4, 2014

Gaining ground!


First baby of the year!  4th ever. 

Upper prime old fence repair.

It was a long weekend.  The grass and weeds are very green!  I spent half a day spraying 2-4-D on the rest of the front pasture, the orchard, the barn lot and about a third of the upper prime pasture.  I stopped for lunch and came out to go back at it and could not start the mule.  I had left the key on and drained the battery.  I had to go get the charger and charge the battery in place.  Luckily, I was parked out front and in reach of the power extension cord.  Since spraying was out of the picture I went up and used a fancy iPhone app to GPS calculate the acreage on the upper secondary pasture.

  I did my first four corner points in a square and got 9 acres but still had a portion of the swamp in that 9 acres.  I ended up utilizing a straight Z shaped pattern to get acreage that can be tilled and hayed that is not part of the swamp or active spring system that is popping up.  I need to recalculate the acreage but I am betting it is right at 9 acres again.  This will make the fencing more difficult as I will have to put in two corners.  Off one of the corners I will put a gate.  This will let me trench up the upper secondary pasture and build 3-4 more small 4x8 foot ponds.  I wanted our animal side to have the running water.  There is also another spring right next to the fence even farther up the pasture.  I am truly amazed by the water just coming out of the ground and forming a running stream. 

When I was spraying the orchard the new baby calf was right by the gate.  I opened the gate and drove right next to the baby, less than three feet away.  The mother started huffing and pawing at the ground and shaking her head at me.  I totally ignored her and jumped out of the mule on the calf side.  She charged me!  I hollered, waved my hands in the air and scrambled to get to the other side of the mule.  I caught a horn to my left forearm, no blood just a small scrape.  I was more careful after that to heed her warnings.  The baby is a little girl, our first heifer.  This has necessitated me to get back on the fencing.  I want to separate the bull and the steers away from the female cows.  So I installed two more gates and drove the metal T-posts in the old fence line along the wheat field.  Gannon helped me tighten and restring that fence.  I have run out of the horse shoe chains I had made for gate latches.  At the rate I keep installing gates I am going to have 10 made this next time around.  I already need two for installed gates and have four more gates on hand that need to be installed.  Maybe 15...

Jason is making great headway on the old granary.  It will be done tomorrow, no more demolition necessary.  I will dig out some of the old dirt that had settled through the floor boards and then put up a temporary fence to keep the horses off the foundation.  I tried to put the boy cows into the barn lot but they did not cooperate and Zeke was not very helpful.  Today, Gannon and Sarah pushed them all into the barn lot.  Now I just need to finish tagging the sheep and sorting out the ram and a couple of wethers as buddies so we can regulate the ewes.  We need to sell off 60 sheep this summer!  I don't know if I can do it without making a run to the animal sale.  The trouble with that is the sale can be very low dollar.  We have cut the price to $50/animal.  Dirt Cheap!  I will be posting them on Craigslist this month.  Time will tell.  Tell all your friends! 
Upper prime corner and front spring crossing.