Using draft animal power on this farm has been a goal of mine from the very beginning. But as a new farmer with already so many balls in the air I don't have the time needed to devote to learning to use horses to work the land. Someday I know I'll be able to integrate them into my farming system but for now I've got plenty on my plate. So, yesterday, on a beautiful cloudless Saturday, I had my friend Carl Russell of Earthwise Farm and Forest bring his team of draft horses, Kate and Ted, over to the farm to ready my fields for the season.
With the use of a walking plow and a good set of harrows, Carl and his team got my fields loosened up and ready for planting into come Monday morning. Carl is very knowledgeable in the field of draft animal power and helps coordinate Animal Power Field Days in Tunbridge, VT every year. I feel so lucky to have him just over the mountain.
In other news, the piggies all have names now. This little girl is Flossie. She's the sassiest out of all of them and also the friendliest. She already flops over to let me rub her tummy.
The other two in the picture with their little house are George and Gladys. George is the most protective of the three. He will probably take the longest to win over. And Gladys is my big sturdy girl who I think aspires to be a professional rugby player. She certainly knows how to stand up for herself.
Overall the farm is coming along nicely so far this season. Peas are in the ground, lettuce, arugula, and spinach are all growing in the green house. The garlic is growing big and strong thanks to my friend Jan helping me weed and re-mulch it last week.The flower garden is getting a make-over as I reform the beds and mulch all the walkways with mulch hay... things really are taking shape!
Just a little look ahead, May 8th is the Fiddlehead Festival up at VTC. The farm will have a booth in addition to lots of other local farms, businesses, and crafters. It's always a lot of fun with great food and good people. I hope to see you there!