Archive for March, 2013

2013 Turkey Orders are FULL

Thank you everyone who ordered. Please stay tuned as we may have more come available later in the year.

Pain and Suffering

I need to get plants in the ground, but it keeps raining just enough to keep the soil too saturated. I was able to squeeze out time to plant 96 kale plants, but that’s it. Between rain, my fire department schedule, equipment issues, and the other stuff going on here on the farm, it seems like I am never going to get all the plants in the ground in time for our CSA.

Our friends at My Dad and Me Family Farm hatched a bunch of baby turkey poults, so I bought several to raise for Thanksgiving. This morning, four were dead. I had them in the brooder with our broiler chicks, and even though there are three heat lamps, all the chicks apparently piled up under one lamp, and smothered those four poults. $60 down the drain. 

We bought a straight run flock of Austrolorp chicks last fall. The hens for layers, and the roos for meat. The scheduled processing day is April 6, but these roos are about out of control. They are gang raping (harsh sounding but that’s what it is) our hens and they are looking ragged. One flew in Katie’s face, scratched her cheeks and cut her lip deep enough to require stitches. 

Speaking of rain, our pastures are so saturated that I either need to keep the cows off of it and feed more hay or we run the risk of pugging the ground and damaging future stands of grass, requiring us to feed more hay any way. Hay alone doesn’t make quality milk, so we’re getting a very sad amount right now. 

The rabbit enterprise just isn’t what I hoped it would be. Most folks in the know, have told me that rabbits can be very tough. Then there are some who are making bunnies like mad. All I see happening with ours is money, in the form of organic alfalfa, going into their cute little wriggling mouths.

Both of our vehicles are having mechanical issues and I haven’t found a mechanic willing to barter for food yet.

The barn roof is flapping in the wind.

The best helper we have is a 9 year old boy who works hard but is limited in ability and judgement.

I realize that much of this is self induced, and these are lessons to learn from. Much of this is from trying to do so much in such a short amount of time but, there is a sense of urgency to get the farm paying for itself, all the while adhering to ever more restrictive ethics (switching to organic feed to cut out GMO feed). We didn’t inherit land, and I don’t want to wait until I’m a used up retiree to do what I believe I am called to do. Sometimes, it all piles up and make me just want to throw my hands up and quit. But I’m not.  Well look! TImagehe sun is out, let’s get some work done.

East West Farm 2013 Pastured Turkey

To place an order for a pastured turkey,  click the link below.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1GVeynfBAv6QLDkpHARbcdLiwGN1aykM1Zrez57ki_Go/viewform?pli=1

Taking First Four Turkey Orders NOW.

http://us4.campaign-archive2.com/?u=99e1d6d8f2f85857382524381&id=69683ebae3&e=[UNIQID]

We’re getting Dynamic, Biodynamic that is.

Biodynamics is a farming method that centers on the energy of living things and treats the farm as a living entity or organism. It was organic before the word organic was coined.  Biodynamics was first developed by Rudolf Steiner in the 1920’s in response to the degradation of the soil from the chemical fertilizers and pesticides that were being introduced into agriculture. He also promoted timing planting, pruning and harvesting plants to take advantage of any influence the moon, planets, and stars might have.

I first got really interested in Biodynamics after meeting another small farmer who produces a very successful CSA on only one acre. His soil is the best I’ve ever seen and he attributed his farm’s success to biodynamics. I met some other folks from a biodynamic garden in Decatur, GA. I invited them out to see our farm and when they did, the topic of turning manure into compost came up. We then made plans to get together to do a compost workshop. Well get together we did and a turn out we had! As a matter of fact, we had to close registration due to the huge response that we had.

If you want to learn more about biodynamics, click HERE. We chose this because it fully encompasses all that God has created. From the use of animal and green manures to coordinating planting and harvesting with the heavens. The energy in our food is not just the caloric value, but it is also the energy of life, oh hey…. as in BIO-DYNAMIC.

Thanks to Cathy Payne of  Broad River Pastures in Elberton, GA for taking these photos.

Granite is a mineral source.

Granite is a mineral source.

The pile

Broad River Pastures' Intern lends a Hand

Broad River Pastures’ Intern lends a Hand

Manure is a vital ingredient.

Manure is a vital ingredient.

Herbal biodynamic preps are key.

Herbal biodynamic preps are key.

542853_425523407533872_753471266_n

Just in case you don’t know what poop is, this came from sheep at Broad River Pasures in Elberton.

544310_425523124200567_653602952_n

In with the veggie scraps.

559689_425523117533901_136105609_n

Having fun yet?

577183_425523210867225_987474846_n

A fine mix.

577418_425523510867195_205129418_n

Nothing like smiling, willing help!

578250_425523454200534_728743206_n

Jim Jensen led the workshop and I think he did an excellent job!

578980_425523130867233_231812861_n

You need carbon. Our carbon primary ingredient was leaves.

600163_425523594200520_1008200947_n

Here, Abbey Brewer stirs up the liquid preparation with some rain water.

601318_425523494200530_1920473516_n

Getting close!

733748_425523177533895_236849507_n

If you have any whole scraps like old oranges or heads of lettuce, you may need to chop them up a bit.

735242_425523627533850_1940862706_n

The final layer, then a full covering of leaves.

 

Turkey Anyone?

We are working on plans for raising some heritage turkeys. Like our chickens, we’ll raise then on our pasture and they’d receive an organic, soy free ration. We will raise a very linted number so contact us ASAP if you will want to reserve one or two. We’ve embedded an order form on our Pastured Poultry Page.

 

Spring Fling will soon be here!

If you are in the Atlanta area, sign up and join us on our Spring Fling and Farm Tour! We’ll have more fun than you ever thought you could while learning about where food comes from!

Register on our Events Page.