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Pigs / Rhubarb / Mucking out

Monday 17 May, 2021

by Rosemary at 4:42pm in Smallholding 0 comments Add your own

Monday 10th May

Definitely, finally, feels like spring. Warm, sunny showers, a light breeze. Braw.

Office day but did sow grass seed in Sheepfold where Dan harrowed yesterday, and put a tape across to divide the field into two unequal halves. I thought it would be nice to see what grows if it’s not grazed.

Found a dead hen in the field shelter – she must be four years old and must have just keeled over while scratching in the straw.  Not a bad way to go. And we had to cull one of the new batch. She’s been looking off for a couple of days, then looked better, but was plainly struggling today.

Bronte / Pigs / Rushes

Monday 10 May, 2021

by Rosemary at 10:36am in Smallholding 0 comments Add your own

Monday 3rd May

Nice start to the day but by late afternoon, it was like November – heavy rain and strong wind (or in the words of the BBC, a brisk breeze!). Dan made some modifications to the cheep run to make it a bit less exposed – I was going to bring them back in.

The cows came in by themselves mid afternoon. Rosie’s not going to go until her due date of the 10th, the question is when will she go. The weather for the week isn’t great. The lambs are all tucked up at the back of the field shelter.

Annie's calf / Alice's lamb / Pig ark

Monday 3 May, 2021

by Rosemary at 12:07pm in Smallholding 0 comments Add your own

Monday 26th April

Rain forecast fro today but only a few showers. Annie surprised us by calving this afternoon. Her due date was 4th May, but I think if I looked back, early calving has become the norm. I saw little legs below her belly while I was doing evening chores and the legs were running about – which is good. Sadly, Ace was pummelling the calf, so we bought him in and left the girls out overnight.  I’m 99% sure it’s a heifer.

calfAnnie and her very new heifer calf.

Scoot / Roo / Skippy

Monday 26 April, 2021

by Rosemary at 11:19am in Smallholding 0 comments Add your own

Monday 19th April

The morning started cloudy but the sun soon came out and it was warm again.  It’s just cold overnight so I guess the soil isn’t warming up too well. And of course, it’s bone dry.

I potted up the dwarf French beans and put them in the polytunnel to keep the greenhouse clear for Dan and Andy to process comfrey.

Kit’s lambs are proving to be a bit of a trial and expert escapologists.

VAT return and year-end completed and off to the accountant. Yay, yay and thrice yay!

Tara and I took the ponies out for a walk and a “picnic”.

Afton / Polytunnel / Peas

Monday 19 April, 2021

by Rosemary at 1:31pm in Smallholding 0 comments Add your own

Monday 12th April

Finally confirmed that the steer / heifer swap is on this week. Wednesday, in fact.

Wednesday 14th April

So, Afton went off to the Selbie Hill herd and Harvie joined ours. He’s a bit wee and skinny but I’m sure he’ll fill out. It all went rather well; we confined Afton to the far end of the shed and let the three steers out, after doing them with Closamectin. They had a gallop around the stockyard before heading out. They have a bale of hay and a licky bucket. When Harvie arrived, he went straight out, then Afton was loaded – she went on quietly at the second attempt. Job done.

Rooster / Caravan / Polytunnel

Monday 12 April, 2021

by Rosemary at 8:54am in Smallholding 1 comment Add your own

Monday 5th April

Cold, cold, cold. Wind sweeping from the Steppes and scouring all before it. Sunny though, and dry. So not really complaining.

And so it’s the end of another year, so all the paperwork has to be gathered for the accountant. I always get a bit stressy about this, although I guess I’m better than some of their clients. At least I don’t dump a box of receipts and invoices on their desks. Bank accounts and cash dealt with, just waiting on the credit card bill, then I can get the VAT return done and the accounts closed off. I’ll do our personal tax stuff at the same time, and then it’s all done. And breathe.

Cluckdown / Appleblossom / Mowing

Monday 5 April, 2021

by Rosemary at 9:04am in Smallholding 0 comments Add your own

Monday 29th March

Today was a day of going for hay, doing paperwork, addressing envelopes and shopping but for various reason everything got a bit muddled and the envelopes didn’t get done. Early start tomorrow.

Dan thinks all the bee colonies have died. Alistair, a beekeeping friend, has offered us a nuc, since we gave him one when he was starting.

Tuesday 30th March

Set my alarm for 6am to make a start on the envelopes; stopped at 7am to do the morning round – hens out, sheep fed, ponies in for their breakfast, hay out for sheep and cattle and cattle out, then my breakfast. Then off to the post office for stamps, finished the envelopes and mucked out the cattle. Very productive morning.

Peas / Tomatoes / Fencing

Sunday 28 March, 2021

by Rosemary at 7:05pm in Smallholding 0 comments Add your own

Monday 22nd March

Frosty this morning, but lovely once the sun came up, but still a cold wind.

Once the chores were done, I addressed envelopes for the first comfrey orders going out this week because Royal Mail are rubbish. After lunch, I had a pile of election leaflets to put out – very good for getting my daily steps up and seeing bits of the town I haven’t seen before.

envelopesOoh, writing with a pen. What a novelty!

Rhubarb / Roo / Ace

Sunday 21 March, 2021

by Rosemary at 6:18pm in Smallholding 0 comments Add your own

 Monday 15th March

March 15th is the day the Rural Payments Single Application Form (SAF) opens to farmers. I was tempted to stay up last night until midnight plus 1 minute and complete it then, but I waited until a more reasonable 10am.  That’s it done for another year.

I took the dogs and walked the fields taking soil samples for pH, potash, phosphate and magnesium testing.  I did three samples – Sheepfold, our five-acre field and Laing’s Field. I more or less followed the W pattern. I think. Dropped them off at the SAC office in Forfar, along with the soil corer and we should get the results next week.

Mulching / Weeding / Mutton

Monday 15 March, 2021

by Rosemary at 9:21am in Smallholding 0 comments Add your own

Monday 8th March

Steven was planning to be here today to scrape Sheepfold but he was otherwise engaged – it’s still a bit wet to be honest. Dave Laing, from whom we rent the 10 acre field, came down for a look and he’s going to run the mulching mower over it for us to take the rushes down.

Quick trip to East Pitkerro and a mega pile of paperwork, but all done.

Tuesday 9th March

Finished weeding the second flower bed at the front of the house and rewarded myself by taking Smokey for a walk. 

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