Clearly I don't get the award for the world's most kept up blog... it has been since March since I posted. So much has happened to us and the farm this year and part of my resolutions this year is to keep log of it more faithfully through this blog.
Changes on our farm in 2012:
With the drought that impacted a huge portion of the nation last year, we were faced with the reality that this current winter we were not going to be able to afford to feed all of the cattle we currently had with projected hay priced. This being said, we made the hard choice to sell several of our herd, but the benefit from this has been fantastic! We sold animals that had characteristics that we did not want to see continue in our animals, and so this coming year's calves should be absolutely fantastic!
Water management and Spring development: We are blessed with an abundance of water on our property, however with this blessing, comes the responsibility of managing the flow of the water and protecting it along the way. With the addition of a new septic system, and underground drainage tile, we have been able to divert water from a low lying field that often is flooded, and take it to a pond that badly needed filled... two birds, one stone!
Plans for 2013:
With the projected 9 calves we will be having this spring, we are going to have a good amount of grazers on the land that is currently fenced.. which means its time to do some more fencing! Our big "addition" project is going to be adding an area of 20 acres of grazing to the rotation. We believe strongly in rotational grazing, and I would be happy to talk with anyone about the benefits to the animals and to the land.
Two other "addition" projects I would like to complete this year are the completion of our greenhouse, and the completion of our meat goat facilities, phase 1. We are looking at making our farm as sustainable as possible, and goats seem to be a potential answer for this, as does produce.
There is always lots of "planned" demolition with any old farm setup, and this year will be no exception to the demo. We have an old garage that will be removed this year, along with a loafing shed that is causing harmful pulling forces on our main bank barn structure. These two jobs are going to require the recruitment of some of our near and dear friends.. and a very large dumpster. :)
In the agriculture education arena my goals are to create a video clip series of science lessons that can be taught on the farm. I plan on linking them to the Ohio Science Content Standards so that teachers can pull them up at will and have their students transported to the farm. I haven't come up with a good name for this yet... but we are going to start filming soon.. so I should work on this... Any thoughts?