This is the season for cow shopping. We are currently looking for two heifers for the fair in May. We will get them artificially inseminated, and once they are confirmed to be pregnant they will be on our farm. We will raise them, and take the best one to fair. The other will stay at our farm where we will start a herd of Angus.
One thing about the beauty here on the Central Coast is unparalleled to anything I have ever seen. Here are some shots I took of the rainbows recently after we had a rain storm.
Watching the bees…
We have bees, we have three hives of beautiful bees. The last time I went out to the hives I realized that I screwed up while I was out there. I left the lid on the inner part of the super, and this did not allow the bees to go to the super to make more honey for themselves for the winter. After I realized this fact I made a phone call to Thera Bee . I thought maybe someone there could put me in contact with a bee keeper. I love having someone come out to the farm, since it is more insightful than just reading the book, or watching something on You Tube. Plus, I want to be safe when I am out there with the bees.
So, while I was talking to Martha at Thera Bee, she said would come out personally. I can’t even begin to tell you how excited I was. I ordered my additional bee boxes. I was ready for her visit. The day of her visit I unwrapped all the boxes I thought I might need, and loaded them into the Kubota, to take out to the field.
Martha arrived, and she was ready to go. We suited up, and went out to the field. We looked, we scraped off the excess honeycomb and propolis. While we we scraping, Martha gave me a great idea about putting water out for the bees, and adding a solar water pump. She then told me about adding wine corks to the water to allow the bees to get a drink without drowning. I had to laugh…this is wine country.
Martha told me right before she left that there were people that wanted to interview her the day she came to help me. She put her interview on hold to help me. Ohhh, that made my day, and showed me that people want to help other people. It was super sweet! I truly was inspired by Martha! Thank you again! I am so glad you came out to spend the day with me!
Terreni D’ Oro is a lot of work, but it is also so much fun. We love our chickens. We allow them to free range, which means they poo a lot on the porch. Which, is more work, yet the joy they give all us, it is amazing!
Although there are only 3 chicken coops pictured here, we actually have 5 chicken coops and one duck house. The duck house is the one on the right. They go to their coops right at dusk. I let them out every morning at 7am. They run around free, and eat the grasses, bugs, and they are given organic pellets in the morning. They always have clean fresh water.
One of my favorite chickens is Dovey. Dovey likes to be held and petted. She even makes a cute little cooing sounds as she nears someone.
I have been a country lady for a year now. How does it stack up to living in the city? Oh my gosh, I wouldn’t change a thing. It has been hurried at times and crazy. I just love going outside when it is quiet, and being thankful for the life I have. In this year we have purchased lots of property. We are now owners of 500 acres. We live on our forty acre plot of land that we have named Terreni D Oro Estate Farm, since the big ranch is Terreni D’ Oro we had to branch off the name. The farm has grown we have 5 chicken coops, a pond with 12 ducks, and 2 geese. We also have three worm bins of red wigglers. Three bee hives, and about 75 trees in our orchard. We have some trees that have not been added to the orchard as of yet. We want those to get a little stronger before they go in the field.
Diversity in agriculture is what we are striving for at Terreni D Oro Estate Farm. Soon, we are going to grow a crop of chamomile, and we will also have plant one of the fields in Lavender. We want to add goats and sheep to the mix. First, we have to find the right breed for our farm. Farm harmony is very important to us. This is why we have the bees, and the worms. We want to make sure that our farming practices are more like the farmers of days past.
I am in awe of Cicero, Thomas Jefferson, and early monk farmers. Being a diversity instead of a mono farmer we are allowing more beneficial insects, wildlife, and humans to prosper. The bee’s must have food throughout the year for their happiness. As we continue to learn more about how the old ways of farming were more beneficial to the environment we also learn that there are many crops that fit different areas better than others.
Being a farmer is something I enjoy, but it is hard work. Farming takes a lot of money to get off the ground. We are taking baby steps, and work other jobs to make ends meet. From the early morning hours, until sundown we are busy. The weekends, we play even more catch-up. Going through the orchard to make sure the trees are doing well, and se what trees have fruit. It will be a while before we have honey, but we will more than likely add more hives.
This time last year we left our house in the city for a life on the farm.
If you follow my blog you know that we lost our duck “Buttercup” to some kind of predator. We are still not sure what animal took our beloved Buttercup. In addition to our 11 ducks, we also have two African Geese. We purchased them when they were small, and one of them was very sick. It couldn’t even lift up its head, or make any noise. Her feet were curled up, and very pale. We called vets to see if there was a way we could get an appointment, but we were told they did not help “water fowl”. My husband remembered that when our dog was stung by a Tarantula Hawk, I gave her some Benadryl. He cut the Benadryl into a very small segment, and gave it to her. Several hours later she was starting to improve.
Her feet were no longer so pale. She couldn’t hold her head up yet, but one of her feet was starting to improve too. By the next day, she looked better, and she could stand again on her feet. She was resting a little more that usual, but she was improving. We tried to just focus on her achievement to get better! By the third day, one could never tell that she had an issue at all. She was honking, and walking.
Today, the two of them wait until all the chickens and the ducks are in their homes before they go into their duck house. They honk loudly to alert the dogs that something is not right. Just this mooring the geese were honking, ducks were quacking, and the chickens were clucking to tell us that there was a coyote outside the coops. I am pretty impressed how smart they are. Here is a recent photo of them with the ducks.