Friday, November 5, 2010

Hey, it's hay!

I showed up to find Joel leaning on a pickup truck which was tethered to a trailer full of hay.  The trailer got detached and after a few nods and a wave the guys in the truck took off.  Joel who looked a little heated proceeded to tell me some story about him haying a field and lending some hay out to one of the guys in the truck who in turn had promised to pay Joel back and it's been three years but, he finally got the hay..blah blah blah...anyways, Joel looked at the trailer and said most of it looked alright but he wasn't sure yet till he could get a better look at it.  Better look?  At what I'm thinking?  It's just hay isn't it?  Noooooo. I got a good 45 minute education in hay.  I will never look at a field the same again.....

What Joel tells me is this:  There is mulch hay and feed hay.  I did not know this.  To me it all looked like a square of dried grass with maybe some vague distinctions..dunno but, I definitely know now.  The farmer pulled out piece after piece of different bails and picked out individual parts like timothy, orchard grass, clover and vetch which I'm told is indicative to good feed hay.  He also pulled out golden rod, Queen Anne's lace in a few bails and explained to me how these plants were not so good for feeding.  Well, being the good student, I asked why some fields have good feed hay and some are garbage..It all comes down to soil health.  If you constantly take take take from the field and never give back by way of nutrients then you will end up with a field full of mulch quality hay not good for feeding the cows. Good bedding for the chickens but, not good cow feed.

The field is Just like the garden by being able to tell a a lot about it's nutrient content by the types of weeds that grow in it.

Over all I suppose the bails met Joel's approval.

The house list..

In order for me to realize my dream of farming I must first sell our current residence and move out of the city!  Sounds easier then it is considering my house is 125 years old and needs some work.  I figure if I keep a list and pick away at it one item at a time I can maintain some sense of organization while keeping my eye on the brass ring..

"the house list" as I will refer to it going forward will be a comprehensive list of all the "to do" items that must first be finished before I can put the house on the market.