Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Monday’s Ploughing

As promised a view of the ploughing I did on Monday. The area just over half way up on the left is the extension to the wood I’m planting. The ploughing started reasonably well even though the land is clayey and still waterlogged.

As I had a row of trees planted at the top I was only ploughing down the slope, (towards the front of the shot) which was fine until the left-right slope got a little bit steeper. Then, because you plough with one set of wheels in the grove cut during the previous pass, the tractor was gradually leaning over more and more. I finally chickened out, I’ve no idea how far the tractor can tip before it does fall over but it felt uncomfortable and I didn’t want to tip over either.

I then tried ploughing at right angles so I was going up the steeper slope but the wet ground meant that it wasn’t possible to get any grip. In the end I ploughed in the original direction but instead of running the tyres in the channel I moved onto the unploughed surface by a foot or so and ploughed strips that are roughly where the trees are meant to go. That’s why the rows to the right have the appearance of raised beds, as that’s effectively what they are.

I've also ploughed a small area further down the field, middle right in the photograph, and that's where I'm planning on growing a bit of maize this year. I've sown a few kernels in the house from the bought in maize I have and a few from the maize I gathered to see if either are viable otherwise I will have to look at getting a small quantity of seed maize.

Today was a relatively lazy day – I think I find it easier to work when the moon is waxing rather than waning as it is at the moment. Most of the day was spent getting rid of various pots and pans of grease. I try not to put grease into the septic tank system so I pour into containers. When they get full I then bin it. Not the best thing for landfill but at the present I don’t know what else to do with it – it’s usually past being useful for cooking.

Final picture for today shows what happens if you forget to close the gate to the patio. At least one of the chickens though there might be something tasty in the pots.


Alan said...

Bet they don't teach plowing at school. Don't teach much that is useful on the farm.

Looks like you are well on your way to spring. Here winter has just settled in. Enjoy the productivity.

dND said...

Too right Alan, This is one area where I think I can say age is on my side. I'm old enough and was lucky to live in the country before the general destruction of small farms in the UK. So somewhere from long forgotten depths of my mind little memories spring up of things I've seen.

As for spring - well, I'm not yet convinced, we could still have some cold weather to come. I think the last frost date here is reckoned to be 15th May although planting of garlic and onions is under way and I'll be starting chitting potatoes in a fortnight.

Barbara Martin said...

Deb, do you ever follow the alamac days for planting?

dND said...

Barbara, I keep thinking about it but generally I have too much to do and things get done on panic management.

Funnily enough today I was looking at one of the moon planting guides that are readily available here, but put it back as I'm not ready to do all the translation from French. Doubly so because I may be about to commit myself to 6hrs French tuition per week!! If the course corks, it's for 25 weeks, then I should be able to tackle anything in French

aims said...

Hey Deb.

I have no idea how far over a tractor can go before if follows the pull of gravity. I've often wondered that when I've looked at fields. Just how do they do it?

Catching up with you. As usual I'm impressed with what you see and make and how you go about it.

How're your precious Alpacas?

During one of my shows the woman behind me had a booth where she sold products for dogs. Dog blankets, scarves etc. Everything she sewed herself. Ended up that she lived on a farm that backed up on what was my parent's farm. Small world.

Anyway - she bought 100 alpacas at our 'odd and unusual sale' here in town for $82.00

My mouth fell open!

To top it all off - she didn't know what she was going to do with all of their hair (fur) (fleece).

I remember when I sold it in my wool store for $14.00 for 100 grams.


She was in the process of learning what to do with them. She amazed me too.

dND said...

Hi Aims. 100 alpaca for $82!!!!! That has got to be the bargain of the year. I do hope she has the space and time for them all, they aren't difficult but all the same, they aren't that easy to look after either.

She's going to have a lot of fleece to deal :-)

the devolutionary said...

Depends what kind of tractor it is and how far the wheels are spaced apart. It's all about centre of gravity - you can get some kind of widget to tell you what's a safe angle, but I wouldn't bet my life on it. Cutting the long grass last year scared the crap out of me, so I had a roll bar (arceau) fitted. Her Outdoors says this is no use without a seatbelt, but I felt better. Great work.

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