Ohiofarmgirl's Adventures in The Good Land is largely a fish out of water tale about how I eventually found my footing on a small farm in an Amish town. We are a mostly organic, somewhat self sufficient, sustainable farm in Ohio. There's action and adventure and I'll always tell you the truth about farming.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Farm notes - lots going on

Wow is there a lot going on.. but I've got to get some farm notes in before I forget. For the new folks, "farm notes" are my planting and journal notes on the activities going on here - sometimes if they are boring but they are my record keeping. I'll include pictures of cuteness to liven things up.

Like these little cuties!

Farm notes:
* Little PigPen aka Bianca aka Lady Gaga... my little micro duck... is still sitting on the chicken eggs I swapped with her duck eggs when my new pal came by the other day. She should hatch them on March 29th. She's in the garage and is as happy as a clam. She comes out and peeps for me when I'm milking. I'm absolutely head over heels for her. Last year she hatched one duckling, Happy, who is also a micro duck.
* The geese are laying! Penny made a beautiful nest and is guarding the eggs with her life. I'll mark the eggs  in there now (2 or 3) and then take up the fresh ones for the house. One goose egg equals 3 chicken eggs in cooking.
* Vita is in full swing now for milking. Debbie is coming up fast. Remember that milking is an "on demand" process and as the kids get bigger, and need more milk, the ladies increase their milk production. If I can catch Debbie before the little ones latch on, I'm almost getting a gallon of milk between her and Vita in the morning.
* Debbies little ones are totally out of control. The pipping and popping is epic out there. No duck is off limits as the little ones fly around at full speed watching the ducks scatter.
* We disbudded Dahlia yesterday. No big deal at all. No crying - nothing. She is fine and hopefully it took and she won't have scurs (those weird little horn nubs, sometimes really misshapen). 
* Nibbles is doing great with her babies - they all have full tummies and little smiles. Today was their first day outside. They loved it. But they are so little! Even my smallest hen is bigger!
* Kai found the electric fence the other day - there was a lot of crying. She is also learning to "herd' the chickens in - not run them down and stomp on them.
* I spent a good deal of the day yesterday scooping up the mud poop soup from the barnyard and hauling it to parts of the garden. The Great Shovel Out will go on for a while. "Deep litter" is a great strategy but wow the clean up is a crippler.  I'm also working on building up one of the bridges across our drainage ditch so the water flows better.
* No sign of asparagus popping up or even the forsythia blooming. Around here we expect 'three more snows after the forsythia blooms." Honestly I think they are ugly and I'm horribly allergic to them - but if they signal the coming of spring.. thats ok, bring 'em on! Daffs are coming up tho and I spied some chives making their above ground. We are expecting our first day in the 60*'s later this week. We are thrilled.

Jane says, "When's the damn snow going to be OVER!"

We parted with some friends this past week. Some of the geese, a load of ducks, and one of our young jake turkeys went on to join new farms. We'd like to thank L and C for giving them new homes.  There is a cold math to farming - and the hard truth is that not every body makes it and not every body can stay. The money from the sale of our feathered friends basically will buy most of the hay we need thru mid summer. It was a wise decision but I'll miss some of those little flippity floppity feet.

Thats the news. Has everyone ordered their seeds? The gal at Lowes told me that seeds were flying off the shelves this year. Make sure you get them while they are hot! Also my pal, Freemotion, got a humdinger of a deal at Baker Seeds. She got 120 'mater seeds when she was expecting only 30. That's a lotta salsa baby!

Happy Monday!
ps for any one who needs a little lift, the Mennonite Girls who really Can Cook like the dickens, have a lovely prayer about the Japan situation, and a perfect verse. Amen.


Robin said...

You are one busy gal right now!

Gingerbreadshouse7 said...

it's a wonder you have time to post and or keep a log going! It seems your farm animals really keep you busy and you have chickens and ducks too! :o)

Linda said...

I agree with Jane! (And boy is she a cuties!)

Chai Chai said...

I always enjoy reading your farm notes, its chock full of farming tidbits! I can't believe you are going to get a 60* day, I still have at least 2 feet of snow on the ground.

Ohiofarmgirl said...

You said it, Robin! Almost too busy to get caught up here!

Hee hee, I'm a little behind, Ginny but I'm catching up. Even "normal" chores are a lot of work - but its fun work...even if those hens keep me in line with their clucking.

hey Linda - Jane is one of my favs. She's a little ridiculous tho. I love her roundy shape.

Thanks CC! Still all that snow?! Sorry baby.. ps can't believe you missed the "Jane says" reference.. you must be goin' away to Spain. Jane says, Have you seen my wig around?

Scott Bland said...

What breed of chicken is that? It's gorgeous

Ohiofarmgirl said...

Hi Scott! She is a Salmon Faverolle -isnt she beautiful? The roosters have very fancy, dark plumage. They also have feathered feet, ear muffs, and an extra toe! I love their round shape and funny personalities. Our rooster is named Mr. Tibbles.

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