Friday

Building a Buck Rake

Building a Buck Rake

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I believe a person can build a buck rake from scratch, many old-timers had to, utilizing salvaged parts from other implements; for example, the caster wheels from the back of side delivery rakes. The implement as conceived by John Deere and its predecessors Dain and Emerson, is structured with two connected parts: the mainframe with lifting mechanism and caster wheels – then the front-axled two wheels which carry the hay tooth basket.

Diversifying Farm Operations with a Sawmill

Diversifying Farm Operations with a Sawmill

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An additional farm operation should allow you to work at it when your schedule allows, but not demand your attention when you don’t have time to spare. To the extent possible, it should make use of your skills and equipment. You are probably already an expert at operating and maintaining gas engines, belt drives, hydraulics, conveyors and winches. Your tractor, flatbed trailer, and 4×4 pickup truck no doubt, do multiple tasks around the farm. Additional equipment should be able to pay for itself in a year or two, even if it is only used three months out of the year.

Haltering Foals - Training Workhorses Training Teamsters

Haltering Foals

In these photos I am demonstrating with a four month old stud colt, Ben, who has been fully imprinted at birth. There are two values to these photos. One is to show how you might halter a new born foal (granted Ben is a little large) and the other is to demonstrate the incredible strength of the imprint training. Ben has not been handled for three months. Keep in mind that I have approached Ben in an eighty-acre pasture and his mother has wandered off.

Irish Dexter Rose Veal

Irish Dexter Rose Veal

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“Farm to Fork” food programs are a revival of the past. Big Horse Ranch & Little Cattle Company is now involved in developing “Old School” free raised Irish Dexter rose veal. We are trying to replicate ranching as it was 100 years ago. This is not a fast paced business venture; it does allow us to best use our ranch to provide old style food for those who are seeking food that has a history of quality.

Reminiscence

Reminiscence

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I’ve always had sheep on Loughin More. And in summer a pony. Always been on the mountain and never ever passed any remarks on ‘The Bauch.’ It’s a word I’ve said all my life; a word from the north of Scotland (I’m told) to describe a circular wall of stones. I don’t know what The Bauch is but I think I know what it’s not.

Seed Savers 451

Seed Savers 451

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“Today so few people farm that vital knowledge of how to farm is disappearing. The average age of farmers is over fifty-five and approaching sixty. The proportion of principal farm operators younger than thirty-five has dropped from 15.9 percent in 1982 to 5.8 percent in 2002.” After I read Heinberg’s little monograph, the final scene from ‘Fahrenheit 451’ flashed in my mind’s eye. But this time, they were not reciting great works of literature – they were reciting farm manuals about soil, compost, microbes, beneficial insects, cover crops and more. The entire Rodale catalogue of books was personified.

The Farmstead Dairy A Domestic View

The Farmstead Dairy, A Domestic View

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To me, the raw versus pasteurized milk debate is easily settled in my mind. If I am going to drink milk from a cow with a number, lined up in her place in an industrial dairy, you’d better believe I want that milk pasteurized. For most of my life I drank milk from a cow with a name. When you only have a handful of cows, if that many, you do notice when something isn’t right. No one in their right mind knowingly drinks milk from a sick cow. I have never gotten sick drinking raw milk or personally known anyone else who did. I have every confidence in the farmer selling the same milk he or she brings to their own table.