It's time to get digging, planting, growing. It really is time. Like, last month, time.
We have the garlic. That's good. I got a few beets, onions, and radishes in. Okay. We have peppers and tomatoes and lots of herbs and flowers started. That's good too. Our strawberries are ordered. Check. Raspberries and gooseberries next. Soon, yes.
But the ground isn't close to ready to plant in yet. We need to prepare the annuals area and the area that will be our U-pick berry patch. Together, they total just over an acre of land.
We were going to rent a tractor with tiller. I found one at a tool rental shop halfway to town. But, when I went back to reserve it, they said the last person to use it broke the tiller attachment. Of course.
Since then we have asked neighbors and friends-of-neighbors and placed an ad on Craigslist for help. Still no luck. Either people have no time because they are in the middle of their own spring planting or they don't have a tractor, or it's not the kind we need.
We will keep looking, but we are getting down to the wire with this. We should have our cool season crops in the ground already. I knew the first year farming a new field would be hit or miss, that's why we didn't do a CSA this year. But I expected getting started would be easier than it has been. We may purchase a tractor next year, but it's just not in the budget right now. We WILL get this done, but maybe not on our timeline.
In the meantime, there is so much to keep me busy with the livestock.
We finally got the pasture fence up. Just in time. The winter's hay is running low and fresh grass is always a welcome menu item. The animals are in heaven on the luscious emerald carpet.
I dropped off 20 pounds of wool and mohair to the Fibers First mill in Post Falls, Idaho this week. I'm excited to get it back as roving so I can spin it up into yarn and dye it rainbow colors. I am so disenchanted with the hand washing and processing of the fiber. It takes so long! I really just want to make yarn and play with colors. I'm completely content to let someone else do the dirty work.
On the way back from the mill, I took a detour to St Maries and picked up 4 targhee sheep. A couple ewes and their lambs. They are just the sweetest sheep. You can tell they were well loved.
The ride home was a bit cramped for them, and stinky for us. It had been raining all day and wet wool isn't the nicest smell. Nor is the constant burping that ruminants do. I owe Michael a thorough detailing and shampoo of his car.
Our breeding sheep flock is up to 8 ewes and 2 rams. I think 2 more ewes will be a good place to stop for now. The goat breeders are at 2 bucks and 4 does. I think one of those bucks will become a wether soon, but he is going to stick around because he is such a sweety and his fiber is so soft.