I was visiting another Salers farm looking for bull calves when one of the bulls got itchy. The brambles didn’t stand a chance. He looks regal. We pulled them off after the photo.
It is always amazing how fast calves grow. Here there are three yearlings on the left and two calves on the right. The brown guy in the middle is a steer and doing very well on our farm. He’s not bad for sixteen months. They are eating some grass pasture stockpiled from spring.
There’s orchard grass in that lucerne but it is shorter and mostly dormant now. Mineral-rich limestone soils grow tasty lucerne which makes healthy animals and great beef. Without the base limestone the lucerne wouldn’t grow so well and without the lucerne the beef wouldn’t be so tasty. The flavour in each bite of steak owes … Continue reading Beef from rocks
“I want a pony,” says Lucy. Who leaves a country packed with ponies to move to a non-pony country?
It is hot and dry out here in le Gers. The last significant rain was two months ago and if the last couple of years are anything to go by it might not rain for another month or two. Here the herd is moving down to the Yukon River paddock. Tom, our neighbor, has seeded … Continue reading Summer grazing happened so fast
All the old vineyards are now seeded to pasture but this is the first time the herd has been on this one: Costanza, by the road. Given the extended hot and dry spell we are in the lucerne and dactyle are doing very well. Visitors to the farm tell me to cut it for hay … Continue reading Herd on the grapevine, this time by the road
A year ago I wrote a little essay on building up fertility in our pastures and how this leads to more legumes. Here is Emerson again this year, about a month later in the season. The yellow flowers are birdsfoot trefoil, the pink is red clover and the long dandelion-like leaves are chicory. Here’s a … Continue reading Raise the fertility and good things start showing up
Time to wash the retriever. She gets a treat afterwards. Lucy helps with some wiring. Apparently the hat is important. The herd moves from Yukon river paddock to Detroit. With the help of Gary the neighbour. With all the spring rain our grass paddocks are still giving lots of good food into summer.
The lucerne in the Vila paddock is doing well. This plant has buds, or as the French say, boutons [buttons]. The orchard grass that was plentiful at the time of the first grazing is far more subdued in the summer heat, but there’s still a seed head or two out there with the occasional other … Continue reading You picked a fine time to eat my lucerne
The herd is down at the little pond between Nebraska and Yukon. (Yes, our geography is ‘creative’.) It’s all heifers and steers in there. Blur has a song about looking for heifers who want steers who like steers to be heifers, or something like that: The grass out there is pretty good given that this … Continue reading Meanwhile, down at the pond