Making Every Day Count

Making Every Day Count

Just like December, January is all about taking advantage of the weather as it comes. Sometimes, when we saw stretches of 40 degree days coming, we took the box of bolts and headed to the Snyder barn. We're working on building a fieldhouse for hay storage. We bought the pieces in 2014. We began construction back then, and realized the siting was wrong. So we took it down and made a new plan. And then it was time to go farming, so the field house waited. And then it was winter and the ground was frozen, and then it was time for farming again. This year, Dan took an opportunity and got the ground posts in before the ground froze, so on warm winter days this past month we were able to construct the ribs. And next time it warms up, we'll be out there again. Once it's done, we won't have to deal with plastic hay covers anymore; we'll have better quality winter feed for the cows, and smooth operating for feeding the cows.

On the cold days, we collect the mail and do animal chores, and then we come inside by the heater and get our screen-time in. It's time to count things, with spreadsheets and tables and totals and percentages and averages. We counted our vegetable production numbers, and the results show in what's in the cellar now: sweet potatoes - great crop! potatoes - 12,000 lbs below target.  The data shows that our farm struggled with the drought in specific crops, but our total production was still 2.1% higher than our 10-year average.  We kept counting: volunteer hours (330), dollars our water bill for our well exceeded budget ($418), and popsicles we sold in the farm shop (1,499). We're compiling all this data into a comprehensive report which we'll send out in February. Counting takes time, but it gives us a clear picture of where we're coming from, which allows us to plan for next year. So now we have a new cold-weather project!




Your Farmer, Zoe
(for Dan, Karen, Abbe, John, & Sunny)