Friday, May 31, 2019

Deep Pack Bedding with A New Approach.

We keep finding new ways to do things. Well new to us anyway. I used to use deep pack bedding with my registered shorthorn cattle. Cleaning out the heavy build up with a tractor and Front end loader, adding to a manure stockpile to compost. I loved the resulting organic matter.

Well now we are doing things on a different level. We used a modified system of deep pack in the barn this winter. We bedded with a mix of layers, shavings, straw and waste hay when we cleaned the mangers. We cleaned out the wettest patches and added them to the gardens, the drier areas got new layers as needed.

The livestock stayed clean and confortable and added their layers. The result is a wealth of wonderful organic matter to add to the gardens. We are laying this mixture between the crop rows as a weed barrier that will compost into the garden as we walk on it and tend the crops. It adds nutrients and we look forward to seeing how it works out.

Now to this point we have been using  the poultry to work the top layers loose enough to fork out and haul away. We use Joel Salatins method of sprinkling corn or scratch on top to encourage them. Its slow but steady.
Today though Ralph had an idea. He fired up the Grillo which has the Power Harrow attachment on it. Using this garden equiptment in the barn is a bit of a challenge but it worked incredibly well. It tore up and mixed a new layer of the manure pack about 3 inches deep in no time at all. The rotary harrow tines or spikes turn horizontally like egg beaters and it is going to be perfect as we work our way through the barn.

We sprinkled corn on the newly loosened debris to let the chickens do their part as this fresh mix needs to dry a bit. Tomorrow we will haul it out and continue to mulch between our garden rows.

We continue to be impressed with the Grillo walk behind tractor and the implements we have for it.

We also love the fact we have livestock that is providing us with do many things. Grass control, physical activity, entertainment, food and marvelous fertilizer to build our soil with.

Now I had better get back to work.

God Bless You and keep safe.

Sunday, May 19, 2019

The Last Critter is Here

They were on our list. Now they are here. A bit ahead of schedule and stealing our hearts.

They love the turkeys and sheep, are a bit unsure of the cows, and sleep  with the chickens.

They are chubby and furry and  smell just like puppies!

Meet Skye and Meg. Our LGD puppies.

I am working on a more detailed post about them. How we ended up with them is a rambling series of odd events. Including an Amish wedding!

God Bless and keep you safe.