It is that time of year again, hay making. Tomorrow our newly acquired rented fields, 7 kms from our farm will be cut. The weather has been good unlike the forecast on the Internet which is changing daily from dry sunny days to isolated thunder storms and showers.
So farmer J and his haymaking partner have decided to bite the bullet and start cutting. A few days of dry weather are needed in order to cut it,turn it over to dry a couple of times, line it up ready to bale.
New machinery has been brought a second hand baler, which has been tested to see if it works before it is needed by lining up straw in front of the hanger a few times enabling enough to be fed in to make a bale.
I am so glad I don't have to take part in making those small rectangle bales anymore, although an idyllic country scene pictures in your mind of working with friends following the tractor and baler, stacking the bales ready to be put on the trailer and then all throwing them up to the stacker on the tr…
Two weeks ago I drove through our end of the Aveyron, through a bit of the Tarn et Garonne and entered into the Lot, new territory for me. I had a meeting to see a lady, well two actually about a dog. Reading this blog I fell for a young girl of two years. Sue who runs pawpoors works with a French lady who has this blog who rescues dogs (and cats).
After a few emails of enquiring and thinking hard if it was the right thing to do off I popped to met a furry friend in need taking Franklin along to see what he thought (he wasn't any help and more interested in chasing cats and sniffing everything, including said dog and then ignored her, at least he didn't attack her)
Now the emails said she had been abused, abandoned and taken in to a local towns dog pound where she spent time before being rescued by Danielle, the french lady. Danielle had worked her best trying to gain (and had) her confidence but I didn't realise how timid and scared she was. I couldn't stroke her wit…
Yesterday morning was spent at La Contie where we are renting 20 hectares of pasture for our cows to munch on and hay to be made. An electric fence was erected, over hanging branches and undergrowth cut down with an assessment of escape routes and fencing in place to keep part of our herd happy for the summer.
This afternoon after the rain had stopped Mona, our eldest cow, her steer and two other steers were off on a holiday. They had split from the herd and kept in the hanger for a few days to settle them down before going in the trailer. It took two hours to get them as being large animals if they don't want to move its pretty hard work.
Finally in the trailer we left them to calm down while feeding the pigs where we found 4 pigs out of their enclosures,one of three was easily put back in with a bucket of food, the other group of three also were easily moved into a new enclosure, which they were going to go into anyway so i guess it wasn't too much of a pain.
After many, many months we have finally had the go ahead that we can rent 20 hectares of pasture land. This has taken many meetings with the owners of the land, the farmer who was renting it and now retiring although the farmers never really retire they just reduce their herd size, which i think they are allowed 6 cows, gain their pension and continue to be active as this is what keeps them going only through illness where they are forced to stop they then find life difficult missing what they have done for many years. The farmer we will be taking the land over from is one of them, still keeping half of the land he has been and will continue to be helpful by letting farmer J use machinery and equipment and giving advice, something the French are very good at here.
Farmer J has put in many hours wading through paperwork, form filling, identifying parcels of land and who actually owns them (which all are in Farmer Pierre's head) and need to be put under our name. Meeting with the …
No nothing to do with disposable toilets a toiletteur is a dog groomer. It is beginning to warm up a bit here and Tysers coat is beginning to get a bit long so today was the day for a hair cut by Miss and me. I had one side, Miss F the other (its OK if you don't look at him square on!). He was so good apart from his beard bits and tail end where he got a bit nibberly he sat and put up with us two cutting away.
Franklin got really worried thinking Tyser had kind of vanished leaving his hair (his eyesight is failing, like mine) so although he could maybe see the outline of black and smell him his thinner self had bogged off indoors finally having had enough of combing and scissor action.His tail end was left long for a kind of poodle effect.
Once cut a shower was in order and a drip dry, he looks a lot smaller now his crimped hair now has a curl in it with the tail end being cut off once we came back from our walk, for fear of ridicule.
This afternoon the pigs shelter was moved to the field behind our gites followed by the two sheep, Gorgon, Thumberlina and Esmeralda. It was time to move them from their winter field to eat down the spring grass that is rapidly growing.
A pot of food and bowls shaken done the trick of moving everybody through the old fields barn down the drive and through the gate to lush grass, Gorgon and piggies started on the old acorns under the oak trees as the sheep were left cramming tufts of grass into their mouths. \only hope they will all be in the field tomorrow and not in the barn where our five week old chicks are(and their bins of food).
They were moved to rest the field they were in and eradicate the build up of parasites leaving the chickens and ducks,who are still grounded to the field in case of fox attacks (the cheeky fox was seen by gite guests on their balcony last week) so hopefully the fowl will be able to keep up with eating the green, green grass as quickly as it grows this …
For the first time in 24 years we won't be with Miss F to celebrate her birthday today.
So, HAPPY BIRTHDAY FREYA .
Franklin is very upset he wasn't asked to be the model for the card but agrees its a very close resemblance to him (although there would be no cakes left on the plate if it was him)
It was Fete du travail today here in Fance, a public holiday to celebrate International workers day however it passed us by. It was just another working Friday, one that was long over due to be spent in the sorry for its self veggie patch only it rained, all day rain.
Yesterday I did manage to plant some leeks although didn't mark out straight lines so they may of gone a bit off kilter in places, at least they have been watered in.
So in the patch there are now seeds under water still. Thinking now it may of been a good idea to grow rice instead.
However the broad beans are coming on (although serious weeding is in need)
As are onions, shallots and potatoes slowly poking their green bits up.
It's still very wet under foot, grass is growing as are weeds if only it would dry out for a few days I may get the beans, peas, all the seeds re seeded and stakes put in for the tomato plants. It may be a late veg season this year.