A special week in that we actually had two cold days together with a hard frost which made the farm look more attractive than it has for weeks even if the sheep are quite the wrong colour! We have never experienced so much surface water sitting on the tracks and pastures – it’s hard for the sheep and Tim and Chris when out checking the stock. The loafing area has not worked as well this year because of the excess rain. Tim excavated many tons of ‘gunge’ but there is still a very wet patch. Typically it is this area the cattle like to stand in! Overall happily the cattle look pretty good and our only concerns are the usual ones relating to their weight.
The two significant stock events were firstly the collection of four steers by Ben of Fordhall Farm. We are obviously delighted at our growing relationship with a farm whose organisation background is so similar to ours. They will be collecting another batch of lambs shortly. The second event was having all the ewes in to check their condition and what a good job it turned out to be that we did this since quite clearly the effort of moving on heavy wet pastures had had quite an effect! Action has been taken and hopefully all will be well.
On the human front the week started with a most interesting and likely fruitful meeting with people from an organisation called Worcester Roots, a charity which work with young people between 16 and 25 who are struggling to make their way in their own lives and the world. We very much hope to become partners in their project. Becky and Jasper have to take all the credit for this initiative.
That evening another of last years Wwoofers came for 24 hours and as her stay coincided with the hard frost she was able to take some splendid photos for us. On Saturday we enjoyed the visit of two investors and one would be investor. Sebastian came over and went on an extended farm walk with them – at the moment he is the only reasonably fit family member. After their walk they came back to the farmhouse for tea and biscuits and an opportunity for some mild ranting! A very enjoyable session and it was clear that on this, their first visit to the farm, a very positive impression had been made.
We’re sad to report that we lost one of our beautiful guinea fowl recently due to a very careless driver – we are now down to eight. The weather forecast for the next few days is of more warm weather (and snowdrops have started to peek out at us) One can but hope that we do not have much more rain and that we have a drying wind!
At this stage the only known event of next week is sheep scanning on Tuesday afternoon – fingers crossed that the five rams did their duty!
Yours, Farmer Adrian.