I have been busy, we just got done with the Pendleton RoundUp and I don’t get any stuff done on the farm for about ten days around that event, my paying job requires a lot of attention during that week. The nice thing was we got some rain on the last weekend. We had 0.56” over two days and have had a total of 0.91” of rain in the month of September. This is excellent news for us but it did take a few days before it was possible to get back out in the fields. My helpers have been out hunting so I have been on my own. I spent two days getting field #1 ready, Mr Rainman had picked so many rocks I only ended up picking four bucket loads over two days. There is probably a couple more bucket loads that are obvious but the huge rocks are all gone and even the medium sized ones are gone. I don’t think I will break a sickle bar mower tooth on any of the rocks left. I have some organic matter on the edges of the field that needs to be piled up out of the field and it will be ready to plant. The field still has too many weeds for us to plant alfalfa in it yet. I am unable to get fall barley or fall oats locally. Most of the fields are too muddy to plant in the spring. So my only choices are grass or triticale. Triticale has a pretty narrow window to harvest in and that is problematic for me as my other job takes up time. PGG did not have grass seed in stock so it had to be delivered. I will be checking in on Monday and get more ordered. Annmarie wants us to plant grass seed in the upper field. This will allow me to still spray with 2-4-D and get a handle on the thistle weeds.
The chickens have learned to let us know when they are out of food. They will come running whenever they see you and become shadows. They won’t leave until you feed them. Once fed they all crowd in and try to get to the same feeder even though there are other choices. Our lone rabbit out front is still alive and kicking, we see it almost every day now. The quail are every where and are amazing. I am sure they are my favorite gamebird. The one we have not seen a lot of are pheasants. We had a lot last year and I am not seeing as many this year. The pidgens are multiplying and starting to get over the magical 30 total number. Once they stay at 30 for a year, they multiply at an exponential rate the next year. There are a bunch of dens/holes in the upper fields from coyotes but I have not seen any coyotes this year.
The pregnant sheep have spent the weekend on the front yard and hillside knocking down the weeds and grass. The dogs are out on the run so they are protecting my hens and chicks plants and the trumpet vine from a sheep induced thinning. There is enough green grass that I think I will have to let the sheep in 3 of 7 days. Some of those ewes are so pregnant they can hardly walk. We expected the herd to be done lambing by now not just three ewes and no one in the last three weeks. Thank goodness we went and bought a replacement ram!