Lots has been going on and I haven’t updated this very much since we’ve been so busy.
The white shed is now completely gone. It sure looks different out there now. We still have a few of the foundation pieces that need to be removed. They are rotten logs embedded into the ground so it will take a while.
We also had a major hail storm on 8 May. I thought that it took off lots of the apple blossom buds but it only took off stuff near the top. The ground was white like it had snowed and the sheep were all racing around and very upset.
During the storm one ewe put her lambs in the dog house we had for the guard dogs from this winter. These lambs seemed to really enjoy being out of the hail. Several other ewes also figured this out and so there were several lambs from different mothers in there at one time.
On the 12th of May the two fields got planted. We are using a mixture of meadow brome, orchardgrass, smooth brome, ryegrass, wheatgrass, festolium and oats as a nurse crop. We’ll see how it all grows this year and frost seed a clover next spring if we don’t have too many broadleaf weeds. The fields got planted just in time. Starting that evening and for the next day we had rain. We got almost 3/4 of an inch of rain, just perfect to settle the seeds in and get them started. We still have to get the field marked and ready to irrigate but the rain was perfectly timed.
By the 16th of May the orchard was in full bloom. In spite of the hail and the snow later we still have a lot of blossoms. When you walk out into the orchard the trees hum from all the bees. There are also a lot of moths and hummingbirds that are pollinating the flowers. We might actually have some apples this year if the blossoms are any indication.
The orchard looks really nice in full bloom in spite of its age.
Yesterday the fields got marked. Today we have to get all the irrigation pipes installed and start watering the fields.
Lambing is winding down. We are pretty much at the end of the time for the primary rams to produce lambs. So far we have had 60 live lambs and 3 stillborn ones. 42 ewes have lambed and there are 15 left to go. Tomorrow we plan to sort out the ewes that have not yet lambed and separate them from the ones that have so it’s easier to locate them. I suspect that none of the remaining 15 will lamb until the second period which won’t start until the first week of June. All the lambs are growing well and I’m really pleased with their overall quality.