Life of a Farm Blog

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Cold is here

fall display.jpg view from porch.jpg JT on the 6000.jpg

Another week has come and gone. Fall is undoubtedly here and winter is approaching. Temps fell below freezing for the first time this year. It has been a chore bringing in the potted plants and putting them back out when the temps allow. Mattie had made a “potty garden” from an old toilet and all we can do is cover it for the cold nights. She made me promise if the cold is here to stay we will put it in the basement. We abandoned our plans to add to the run in shelter we built for the goats in favor of just giving them space in the barn. They were so grateful. They now have a whole end of the barn, about 15′x35′. I set out a couple of weedy rolls for them too. We have been using them to clean up a space we intend to convert to pasture so they jumped right on some hay. Goats seem to love hay, but they just don’t do as well on it as they do on leaves, briars, and weedy browse. The chickens have slowed their laying from a continuous 20 eggs a day to 10-13. I don’t believe they care for the cold either.

We had a fire in the woodstove for the first time this year a few nights back. I do not look forward to bringing in wood this winter. I have let the cold slip up on us and not cut enough wood. I have lengths cut and drying, but very little split. I tried to start the woodsplitter yesterday, but it wouldn’t budge. I believe the engine is locked up. I’ll tinker with it and try to get another year from it, but it is time to buy a new one. Actually has been for a year or two. I can’t decide whether I want one that has a gasoline engine or should just get one to run off the Mahindra 6000′s PTO.

As I said a few posts back, we have been discussing contract growing with Cobb poultry. I have looked for ways to make this farm profitable. They are offering a good package, but frankly we are not sure about the money involved to get started. It would be very expensive to build our own houses. I’m not sure it would be setting the best example for the children either. Most large-scale animal growing facilities are borderline inhumane. At any rate the reprensentatives have been to the farm and seem to be enthusiastic about bringing us on board. I, on the other hand, keep coming back to the idea of the pumpkin patch. It sets all the right examples and in time I believe it could be profitable.

I don’t know if it is the change in the weather, but we have been seeing lots of turkeys in the fields. It could be that we were always so busy in the past we just never noticed them. Deer are also beginning to show up. I have seen them most all year. They seem to be really curious about what you are doing with loud machines like tractors, saws, and mowers.

With the change in seasons comes allergies for the children. They really suffer until they build up a little immunity to the pollens. Today Garett had some allergy testing done that confirmed he is severely asthmatic and allergic to pollen, mold, grass, and dust. That presents lots of challenges for the little guy on the farm.

I have ruined my Mahindra hat, so I had to order a new one. While I was at it I got some keychains, pens, and koozies for gifts for friends. I also picked up a couple Mahindra t-shirts and some Mahindra coffee mugs. Click here if you want to check ‘em out.
Got tons to do, so I better go ………………. drop me a comment and check out our pics.


7 Responses to “Cold is here”

  1. Jennifer Says:

    Like many others, I think its great that you are raising your kids (with help), working full time and also working your farm. You are a busy guy. Sounds like you have a great piece of land though. I like the idea about the pumpkin patch. We have several of them popping up out here in Oregon also, with corn mazes and petting zoos. I bet that would be a fun and potentialy profitable business, although seasonal. Its easy to see that you are a wonderful dad, raising your kids with good core values, on the farm.
    Keep up the great writing, its been fun reading it!
    ~Jennifer

  2. joelw Says:

    Thanks, I really enjoy our lifestyle and I’m so glad others enjoy reading about it. Are you close to Springfeild Oregon?

  3. Jennifer Says:

    Yeah, I am about an hour north of Springfield.

    ~Jennifer in Oregon

  4. pete deen Says:

    Let me say thanks for sharing your farm life with us “wantabe’s”. If you really want to go full-time on your farm, read Joel Salatin’s books and articles available from “The Grass Farmer” monthly publication (also good reading” (800) 748-9808. Joel supports an extended family in good fashion on a farm smaller than yours. He is the real deal. Keep the cards and letters coming. thanks, Pete

  5. Carl Kelso Says:

    I’ve been thinking about buying a Mahindra tractor, I can’t find any one that has owned one. How’s yours? Does it hold up? How hard is it to work on? How hard to find parts? When you get to the times that you don’t know what to do ( even with the book ) does the dealer help? Or just try and screw you out of more money?

  6. BECKI HATCH Says:

    I AM REQUESTING INFORMATION CONCERNING YOUR CATFISH FARM. I AM INTERESTEDIN BUYING FISH FROM YOUR COMPANY. PLEASE RESPOND BACK.

    THANK YOU IN ADVANCE,
    BECKI HATCH

  7. joelw Says:

    Pete,
    Thanks for reading I’m glad you enjoy.
    Carl,
    I think Mahindra has the best tractor for the money out there. Mine has had no easy life and has done well. Simplicity is what I like so much about these tractors. They are very straight forward and easy to work on. The parts support is very good and improving all the time. Any instances when I needed a part that wasn’t on the shelf it was mailed to me in 3-5 days at very little charge. I have been very happy with price too. The dealer I bought from was the same dealer I had been dealing with on implements and other things so we had a relationship before purchase. I suggest you get some names and numbers of owners from your local dealer and talk with them. I’m sure they are satisfied.

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