Hay Lessons: Addendum

One of the best aspects of living in the country is having friendly neighbors who are willing to share their expertise and lend a helping hand, literally. Since we could not cut and bale the remaining hay, our neighboring farmer cut and baled the hay.  Our field yielded 15 round bales @ 600 pounds each; this is approximately 250 square bales. That’s impressive to us for our first harvest!

Hay Bales

Hay Bales

Hay Bales: Another View

Hay Bales: Another View

 

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Hay Lessons

Last weekend, we learned a valuable lesson about hay. Despite our best efforts to grow and harvest our own hay, we had to admit defeat.  It started when the quick hitch would not work with our brand new sickle mower and the hydraulic hose sprung a leak. After several trips to Tractor Supply,  True Value and  finally John Deere, we had the right valve. Everything was working! Eureka! We did it! Then after only four passes, the hydraulic hose started to leak again and the weight of the sickle mower was literally making our little Kubota BX 23 unstable. Even though we are novices, we did our research. The sickle mower was suppose to be able to work with our tractor; maybe  it works best on flat property. Our property is hilly.  This was a sad moment for us. The next day we went out and turned our four rows of hay with his/hers pitchforks. Many people stopped to stare. We found this interesting sine this is how farmers turned their hay long before machinery. By the third day, the hay was dry enough to bale. How did we bale the hay? We baled the hay by hand using a manual baler. My beloved spent many hours researching and building the manual baler. Originally, we had high hopes of baling all the hay by hand. Alas, we put up 20 bales using our manual baler.

Our lesson: It’s okay to admit defeat when you gain a better understanding and appreciation for the task at hand. And in the end, there is still  personal satisfication in knowing we put up 20 bales of our own hay by hand. Now, we realize we could not have baled all the hay by hand. Our next step, is to look for a bigger tractor that can  handle our sickle mower, wheel rake and find a baler, too.

It was a good learning experience and we are actually looking forward to the second cutting.

First Bale

First Bale

Manual Baler

Manual Baler

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Our Chickens Enjoying a Dust Bath

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Buffet at Denny’s

Our chickens are chowing down on caterpillars. We found them while mowing the pasture.

Around the Buffet

Around the Buffet

The Buffet

The Buffet

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We Have Gophers! Not Really!

We do have a long trench that runs from the barn to the house in preparation for running the electric and water to the barn. Work is underway!

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Pasture Fencing

Our pasture fencing is finished, so our next step is running water and electric to the barn and sheep, of course. Coming soon!

Fence Posts

Fence Posts

 

 

 

 

 

Paddock

Paddock

Another View

Another View

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Happy Easter!

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