Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Who Says Goats Are Dumb?,etc.

I haven't had as much trouble with my goats getting out lately, so I'm not having to run out every little whip stitch and get them in. I was reading the blog of one of my blogger friends in New Zealand, who was considering getting a goat or a heifer calf for milk for the family. She had heard so much about goats escaping, I'd say she probably went with the heifer calf.I just recently figured out a way to keep my goats from rushing under the electric fence, which they had gotten quite good at. I placed anything I could find along the ground under the bottom strand of electric fencing, to where they are afraid to tackle going under it. I think they are smart enough to know that if they go really fast under the fence, they aren't going to get so much of a shock, but if they have to wiggle through the obstructions and the fence, they will surely get a much stronger jolt of the electricity.There is no reason for them to want out. There is plenty of fresh grass in their pen. They have an enormous bale of hay to eat. They have water. I give them corn on a fairly regular basis. I guess they are just inquisitive, and spoiled.I will be expanding their pen in a little while soon. That will help me out in the mowing department. They need a little bigger area to roam and a little more grass to eat, and,therefore, there will be no need to mow the nice green grass.

I have expanded my chicken pen for the same reason. It doesn't look like much at the moment, but it is "a work in progress". Hopefully I can cutesy it up along the way with vines and bushes of all kinds. I must leave Pop access to the woods entrance and the pending tool shed entrance, so that is as big as I could make the pen and get away with it.The chickens lay much better when eating the white clover,which grows good in this part of the yard, and it cuts down on my mowing time, even though I love to mow.It is such a waste to mow the white clover, when they love it so. Pop doesn't want to spend the money on a real fence for my animals, so I use whatever I can find and manage to get the job done,and it usually works. I have used some fence panels we got from a cousin in the construction business, who finds lots of good salvageable things for us to use for whatever.I hate having the property looking so messy,so it is a constant struggle for me to clear certain areas and make them more manageable, whether it be using it for pasture,flowerbeds,yard, or garden.

The flower beds get out of control at times, since I have so many. It keeps me hopping, trying to keep ahead of them(and most years, it's impossible.)My goal is to eventually have them all bedded down with perennials, and mulch and hopefully they will not get so out of hand.

I keep strawberries, for novelty, more or less, since we buy what we need for jams and jellies, from the Amish. As a matter of fact, just last night and this morning, I dug up a few stray strawberry plants, and started another row.The flower bed I had some of them in, was running over.I am trying to build up the soil in the row I made for them with dirt from the chicken pen and the shredded tobacco stalks, and the decomposed mulch I collect. And, too, they are at the edge of the yard, so that will be handy to keep check on them. I hate having my produce "way out yonder", when it comes time to care for it or gather it.I like to keep a lot of things like that, close at hand, just so the grandchildren will learn where they come from.They do enjoy picking and eating them straight from the vine.

Blackberries are the same. I do freeze several of them since they grow so abundantly, but give a lot of my starts away to friends and neighbors. My blackberries are thorn less. Some say they are not as flavorful as the wild, but I picked enough wild ones as a kid,and I hate the thorns. I am willing to sacrifice a little flavor. If someone is that much of a connoisseur of berries, they need to buy wild berries from someone else, or pick them themselves. I'm sorry, but that is one job I don't want.Considering the thorns, and now the turkey mites and ticks. No thanks.

I have rambled on so this morning, I must get off here and get a little more done, before the grandson comes. We are planning a big day with my older sister,Mary, from "Nails in My Pocket".She has her grandson again today, so we are planning a picnic and a play day at one of the local parks for them. Will give you an update on that in a later post. Have a Good Day!

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