A Weekly Account of Life on the Fairview Farm
By: Asher Wright
Weekly update: June 29th – July 7th, 2019
- We Cut another 10 acres of hay on Sunday June 30th and got that baled this week. This was our first cut to get rained on which isn’t bad considering the rain we have been getting. This puts our total round bale count at 184. Our goal this year is 300-350 bales, I am still wrapping my head around everything before we make that call. It’s a balance of cash and true need and having some in the bank for Summer 2020 in the event of drought.
- On Monday, we moved 11 spring weaned calves from the Rutherfordton farm to Fairview. Our forage is more high quality up here so it’s best to have the younger growing animals on it.
- We plowed the corn maze on Monday and then disked it 2x on Thursday. The goal here is to kill the above ground plants through plowing and then to make the soil into small particle sizes for planting. The smaller the soil particles are the greater the surface area is and the better chance of seed to soil contact you get. Because we do not use herbicides on our farm we cannot no-till plant the corn maze. We must do “conventional tillage” on it to prepare the seed bed. A neighbor of hours will be planting this coming week with his 4-row John Deere 7000 planter.
- We weaned one of our sows piglets. She weaned a great litter of 13 at 37 lb. on average which = 481 lb. total or approx. 80% of her body weight, that’s great, go mom!
- We began systematically weed whacking all of our fence lines which I initially estimate to be about 10 miles worth of fence lines. More to come on this one day.
- We finally got our 5 gallon box of Effective Microorganisms (EM) which is a liquid that contains billions of beneficial lactic acid forming microbes. Lactobaccilus is commonly known one but there are many others. If you want to nerd out on this, Wikipedia isn’t a bad place to begin. Check it out here. We spray this into our heavy use pig and chicken areas and around the compost to help with nutrient cycling and to eliminate fowl odors created from hydrogen sulfide, ammonia, and other organic compounds that are associated with anaerobic fermentation and decomposition. Basically, this stuff helps make the animal environment healthy and odor free. We mix 1 pint of the liquid into a 4 gallon back pack sprayer and mist it on the ground.
- The crew processed almost 140 chickens on Wednesday which is the most we have ever done. They did the extra 30 birds in about 30 minutes more than the typical average time which show some serious improved efficiency. Go Team! The 30 extra this week were because the plucker broke last week and processing was cut short. Brian and the team worked hard on Thursday getting these extra birds packaged. Thanks Brian and butchery team!
- These items are in addition to the basic chores that are performed every day which take about 3 hours.