Hens moving / Hay bell / Feed store clean / Escaped steerRSS feed

Posted: Monday 27 February, 2017

by Rosemary at 12:29pm in Smallholding No comments Add your own

Monday 20th

What a beautiful spring day. Decided to check the electric fence in the ponies’ field – it was working.

Pressure washed the perches and ladders from the brown and green henhouses and sprayed both houses with disinfectant.

After dark, did paperwork and the conference clear down, writing up notes for next year.

Tuesday 21st

Not so nice today – grey, colder and windy.

Don’t know what happened in Sheepfold last night but the electric tape protecting the wall was broken this morning and Smokey and Bug were dead spooky. Lucy was fine.

Just as I prepared to do the rounds of bank, post office, skip and saddlers, I got a text from Alan at Astwood to say that Robbie, our black 2015 steer, was in the orchard.

Paul, who’s working on the classroom came with Dan and I and we got him back in quite easily. I then went off to do my bits and pieces while the menfolk sorted the electric fence.

Once I got back, I started to tidy the feed store – how do I accumulate stuff? Not finished by feeding time, but I’ll get it done in the morning.

Dan went curling, via the Council offices, with the cheque for the building warrant, and Harbro, to pick up the Hay Bell. I hope it doesn’t blow away in this wind.

Wednesday 22nd

Oooft, very windy. Sunny though, so hung some washing out. I’ll pick it up next time I’m in Arbroath.

Finished tidying up the feed store – looks great.

Renewed my subscription to “The Scottish Farmer”; I feel like I should try to understand the politics of Scottish agriculture.

Dan wrote an order for fencing materials needed to finish the pig pen and replace the fence round the vegetable garden; I almost put it in but decided to wait until we walked the fences at Astwood, then we’d only incur one delivery charge.

The vet was out this afternoon to give the ponies their tetanus booster and to rasp their teeth. Both ponies had sharp edges but otherwise, teeth were in good condition.

Started to tidy out the freezers; three down, three to go.

Put rugs on both Smokey and Lucy tonight; Bug will just have to cuddle into them.

Thursday 23rd

Wind now accompanied by heavy rain. Glad I rugged the ponies.

Found some frozen blueberries in the freezer so made blueberry muffins. Finished the freezers; ordered spare batteries for the thermometers and updated the list of freezer contents. I could probably empty one and will do soon.

Started Smallholding Scotland website – at least wrote some content. Dan’s going to look at the technical stuff.

Friday 24th

Beautiful Spring day! We took the new Hay Bell up to Astwood and set it up; the sheep were quite excited about it.

Hay bellHay bell in action.

Put a bale of straw out for the steers – that’s their fourth one this winter.

Fresh straw for the steersFresh straw for the steers and Winnie.

Walked the Astwood fences and made a note of the work that needs done. About 35 posts need replaced, a couple of short stretches of stock netting then it’s mostly tightening wires, hog ringing and staples.

We’ve asked if we can add more barb, and that’s been OK’d.

Watched the last episode of “The Mart” tonight – I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the programme.

Saturday 25th

Windy and wet this morning but getting better.

Made a start on pruning the raspberries – hard to tell which are summer fruiting and which are autumn fruiting. I’ll just need to make a best guess. Lesson learned – don’t plant the two types anywhere near each other as the runners get mixed up.

Off to Perth this afternoon for the men’s final of the Scottish National Curling Championships, then out for a meal with Alistair and Janet.

Sunday 26th

Changeable today – four seasons in one day.

Moved the caravan back to its usual spot and let the hens out; we’ve got disinfectant footbaths in place and feed and water is under cover.

Chook caravan in motionChook's back from their holiday.

I’ve checked the area for any obvious contamination by wild birds.

Fingers crossed that all is OK – but glad to see them out.

The other flock will go out 1st March.

The folk that bought Ravensby Hall have offered us the grazing – nearly 20 acres. Going up to see it tomorrow. Really nice folk, so hopefully will work out well.


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