The Horsedrawn Circle Letter

Getting Started Behind the Plow

Getting Started Behind the Plow

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Leo initiated the circle letter discussion on plowing in their very first letter. Already familiar with turning ground with the sulky, he asked for tips on taking the first steps behind the walking plow. The following advice may not be complete, but it is unique in that it combines the fresh impressions and lessons of teamsters who first put their hand to the plow this past year with the seasoned experience of those who have been walking the furrow half of their lives.

HCL How Many Horses

How Many Horses?

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One of the most frequently asked questions by aspiring teamsters is “how many horses will I need for my farm?” Judging from the following circle letter responses to this very topic, three horses – a team and a spare – would be ideal for a market garden, and four to eight work animals should be sufficient for a livestock operation, where a significant acreage of hay and field crops are harvested.

When Enough Is Enough

When Enough Is Enough

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Joseph, I agree with your twist on some of us farmers/homesteaders being ruled by the farm and its work. It’s a case of the “tail wagging the dog.” Maybe we should discuss our time management methods of deciding when to determine when “enough is enough.” We are not in it for the money and this is the lifestyle we choose. So…why is it so stressful? Is this the way it is supposed to be?

Working Horses Successfully

Working Horses Successfully

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I have a thought for another circle letter discussion. I would like to hear what folks feel it takes to work successfully with horses. How folks deal with their horses in all their moods and in all the different situations presented to them. When I started driving I found the hardest thing for me was working with my horses when things were just not quite right. Many of my attempts seemed to make things worse, though we would always seem to get through the day. I found my ideas on what it takes to drive horses successfully to be changing almost daily as I feel I am slowly stumbling onto an approach that works.