Well there went 2017. What a rough year in the since of farming 2017 winter was harsh not as far as cold and snow but wet and foggy. It felt as though we would never see the sun. The cattle literally did not put on weight they used all their energy to stay warm. then the vegetables so wet and soggy we couldn't plant on time. Then came May and the sun finally began to shine only to find by June it was so hot that the grass was already drying up and it was to hot to keep the veggies weeded. Then the turkeys yes the turkeys by taking others advice(which I know better) I purchased the broad breasted birds a month early well by mid October they were dying as they were just to big and their internal organs couldn't handle the growth we lost 17 birds before harvest in early November not to mention we had several birds that weighed 30lbs now that's a large turkey. Have to say even though they were very large it didn't change the flavor they were so good. Oh I can't forget to mention that our beef USDA processing plant closed their doors so we now turn to another way of marketing our beef. Life is never dull. Looking forward to new adventures in 2018.
What do farmers and Ranchers do in the dark of winter? Plan dream and plan some more. As 2017 gets under way so do the yearly farm plans. Although I love gardening our customers are driving us to focus more on the protein end of our farm. There are few farms/ranches in the area that are able to offer beef in small portions and pkgs. We are pushing ahead with the plan of offering turkeys for thanksgiving and adding in stewing hens. We still have pygmy goats and love the joy they bring us. Do to life getting in the way we were unable to open the pumpkin patch last year. This year we hope that to have it up and running in full swing come October. The pygmy kids that were born the beginning of January are now bouncing like ping pong balls around their pen and the tomato's seeds have been planted looking forward too spring.
The rains are here and so is weaning time. the chorus is loud both mom's and babes are mooing their opinion of my decision to separate them. It's been three days and all are beginning to calm down and settle in the little ones are so quick to learn the sound of my voice they came running this morning knowing there would be fresh hay thrown in their bunk feeder. Thanksgiving weekend will be the beginning of halter training for three of them. this weekend I will move the bucks to the barn for the winter it keeps them in better health and helps me to have all feeding in close proximity. The turkey house is 90% complete (still nee electrical) the birds are able to stay out of the weather if they desire. The website has been updated to show our 2016 offerings I wish you all a happy Thanksgiving and may you all be blessed as much as I am.
This spring brought a lot of boys to the Lowline herd there is a saying if you get a lot of bulls the good lord wants you to pay your bills if you get a lot of heifers he wants you to increase the herd typically we get a lot of heifers guess it's time to pay the bills we have had 5 bulls and 1 heifer born were waiting on the last girl to go some where around memorial day.
We have a large waiting list for our pygmy goats this year we have 3 girls due in July and I plan on having a few more due in October.
The garden is in and growing I ate the first salad this week so yummy kale lettuce chard and spinach nothing better than food right from the backyard. The farmers markets will be up and running in June that's when things really get busy and hectic around here hope to see you this summer either at the farm or one of the markets we will be attending the Marysville and port susan market this year.
What a beautiful morning all the mountains covered with snow and a enough in the lowlands to be picture perfect. Heading out to the Holiday market advertising our beef. Tonight will be in the teens will add heat lamps for the month old pygmy kids.
Well Oynx surprised us I thought she would calf around April 4th guess not I was right about her calf being a heifer after 4 bulls she now has a little girl and a darn cute one at that. she weighed in at 62lbs. Ted thought he should go check the cows and Tadah there she was standing by momma these lowlines are such great mom's. Even with the record rainfall I was able to get the garden started thank goodness for the salsa (warm) house I had started spinach and lettuce back in January. I was able to get them into the ground last week along with the peas and the walla walla onions can't wait to taste those YUM YUM. the chick area is ready for the new arrivals I have never catalog ordered chicks before they are due to arrive around April 23rd so excited I ordered Chatncellers a rare and endangered breed the only known Canadian produced chicken and the most cold hardy of all breeds. because apparently I enjoy farm work I'm also going to try uncubaating some eggs beginning April 1st I'm hoping if I have success they will hatch around the same time I receive the chantclers will see farming plans never seem go as expected.
Super bowl is over meaning so is my vacation. time to focus on spring. Lettuce is sprouting in the flats I started last week the salsa house is waiting with many empty flats needing attention. The two boermy girls will soon be kidding they have been moved from the field to the barn.