Monday, June 18, 2012

Still here!

Its been about 6 months since I last updated this blog, my apologies to those who read it!  We have been very busy, but then again there isn't all that much to say!

We have been working hard on our house - you can read about that here.  Things are coming along, but as with most owner builder projects its slow.  

The farm has been keeping us busy.  All the spring babies are all grown up. The two baby goats, are now pretty much fully grown, and capable of major destruction to trees.  These will be the last goats to come here, NO MORE GOATS!  On the up side, we are now milking our two girls and have plenty of milk.  Milk production has slowed a bit now that the weather has cooled down, but will pick up with spring.  Goats (and suspect cows are the same but we are yet to try) can be milked continually, after one kidding.  Our older goat Dorka is now coming into her third year since she had her kids, and milk production only varies due to the weather and feed availability (mostly because when it rains the goats just stand under cover and don't eat!!!).

baby goats are not so little now...
 I've been working on my food forest, trying to get some ground covers and understory plants going, as well as planning out winter fruit tree planting.  I've read some very good books recently on this, which have provided me with much inspiration.  Gaia's Garden by Toby Hemmenway and The Wilderness Garden by Jackie French.  Both great books if you want to design a productive garden modelled on natural ecosystems. 

We finally updated our chook pen.  The original pen was supposed to be movable, to be moved weekly or so, but it was just too heavy for the two of us, and visitors are not so common to these parts!  The new pen is  a large paddock (between 1/8-1/4 acre in size) and has a 'raw' bale house in the middle.  Eventually the paddock will be divided up into 4 yards, and the chooks rotated between these yards.  Once the chooks are out, the yard will be planted in good things for them to eat, and will start to have some impact on our feed costs.  The chooks are happy and snug at night in their insulated house.

I'm planning lots of tree planting for our land this winter (and the next few after that).  We have lots of springs here, and with all the rain we have had, many places in our local area have suffered land slips.  Its something we don't want to happen here, and the only thing that can stop it is deep rooted trees to use up the water and to stabilise the soil.  Observation also helps, and I've noticed that blackberries grow on some of our most vulnerable spots. I reckon they are actually helping (but don't let the neighbours hear me say that, having blackberries on your land around here is worse than harboring a criminal....). 

Winter is cold up here, so I'm catching up on spinning (and some of my overdue garden projects) and dreaming of the summer season to come.  Big plans for tomatoes this year (I know now we need about 100kg of tomatoes to cover our sauce etc requirements, so that is the goal...).  I also want to have a go growing maize for animal feed, as well as the usual summer stuff.  Lots to do, and never enough time to do it all! 


  1. So glad your back l really missed your post, l love to hear what your doing around your farm and your spinning is very inspirational.

  2. We have had the same problems...

    Your new goats look great! Wish we were closer we would buy some or do a breeding deal. (USA mid-west is a bit far...)

    Glad you posted. keep adding stuff, even the boring stuff...