Ahh…. Spring is in the air, mixed with cold spells. The warmer days have flowers starting to open around our farm. I have been very busy trying to get things ready and still keep up with the basic chores. We had babies born, first a nigerian doe kid with 2 doelings, then the nubian, Moonlight, with triplets, 2 bucklings and a doeling. Moonlight surprised us as her due date was 10 days later, so I must have messed up when inputting the breeding date as all her kids were full-term. One of them has entropian eyes, which has caused a lot of learning and incurred a vet bill to start our year off, but he is doing better.
Our bee supplies arrived and I spent an entire day assembling the hive bodies and frames. The kids and I will be painting them either today or tomorrow, probably white. Then I am going to decorate the boxes with designs painted on for fun seeing as they will be in full view of everyone who visits or drives by the farm. I know it is a bit quacky to do all that, but I loved the painting I did on my chicken coop nest boxes last year, and it’s just fun to have things pretty or different sometimes, and the bees sure won’t care. I have even heard it helps them find their hives if it is a bit different in color, so maybe my painting will serve a purpose, though a very small one 🙂
Speaking of quacky, I am getting close to ordering ducks, kahki campbells I think. I didn’t want to do it before I had other things done that I placed first on my priority list, but I think I can swing the ducks. I want them for slug/snail control since the pasture is at the top of a swamp/flood-plain and snails and slugs carry parasites and diseases from deer to my goats. So, the ducks are very important on this new property, and they will turn those nasty swamp bugs into awesome eggs! I’m sure we will lose a few to predators, but I think we have enough brush to protect them from hawks and some fencing I can move around will help with fox and such. The biggest problem may be hunting dogs in the fall; hunters seem to think the swamp is fair game (no pun intended).
Yesterday I got seeds started. Late, but better than never. And not as late as last year. I bought a greenhouse at BigLots since I don’t have room to start the seeds indoors, plus I stink at hardening plants off, so it’s better if I can start them outside. I can move the light-weight green-house around too, so it is very versatile. Now I just have to get some of the garden beds filled with dirt and get peas and greens planted. I also need to finish the chicken coop, though I have to say I am tempted not to keep hens, however, they do have a purpose, so maybe just enough I can keep in a small area.
This is the green-house;
Yesterday I also got our first compost pile started on our new farm, and I got the first door on the goat barn! I like this door, and once I figured out how to put it on the metal frame it was a snap.
Oh, and I did some work setting up the “milk parlor”, though it has a long way to go yet. There is a chalk-board to notes on worming, production, health concerns, etc., a counter space for doing fecals (no more poop in the kitchen!), and storage for medical supplies and such. I can even install locks if I want!
Anyway, it is busy, as usual, around here. What are your plans for spring, what are you working on and dreaming of for the farming year ahead? Any new projects or endeavors planned for your year?