Monday, September 22, 2008

Autumn Farm Projects

I started a new job in which I work 77 24-hour days per year.  It's hard work but then allows plenty of free time for farm chores and fiber projects.  Friday Tom came home from his annual hunting trip, and we ground and pressed the crab apples.  They tend to ripen before the apples so every year they start to rot by the time the apples are ready for pressing.  So this year we got smart and pressed the crabapples first and have frozen the juice until the apples are ready.  I used a Cuisinart for the crabapples because the apple grinder doesn't do a good job on such tiny fruit.

Then we rented a large chipper for the weekend.  Saturday we took down and chipped about 10 trees plus assorted branches.  These were trees that had died or were falling over.  Sunday I had to work so Tom cut down and chipped about 4 more trees.  Now we have a lot of wood chips in front and behind the barn to hopefully keep the mud under control this winter.

Tom was laid off from his job Friday (not unexpected given the economy).  Today he repaired the back fence and dug out the ditches in the pasture.  I put up a barrier with chicken wire and hog panel to keep the animals from eating the hay stored in the barn (hopefully).  I put pieces of trim on the top of the goat feeder to try to keep the chickens from roosting on it this winter.  I also cleaned out the enclosed pheasant pen and put four rabbits in there with the two pheasants.  They seem to all get along, and this will give the rabbits more room to move around and more light exposure than the hutches.  I put away the summer furniture, picked some swiss chard and green beans and then put up patio lights.  All of this is in preparation for a long, dark, wet winter.

Happy Autumn!

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