Sunday, August 12, 2007

I'm a Dumb Farmer

I guess being in England for 5 months, living in a small flat in town has made me forget how to be a farmer. Or maybe I'm just a ditz. Last week I wanted to finally get around to spreading the pile dry manure in the veggie garden after the 103 degree temperature had dropped to a cool 88. I got out my trusty workhorse tiller (Atiller the Hun) that I've had for about 25 years. It has never failed to start even though I keep the same old gas in it, don't change the spark plug and let the grease pile up on the poor thing. Shameful, I know. I put a tad of gas in the carburetor, set the choke to high and pulled and pulled and pulled on the cord. No wonderful chugging noise. I finally gave up and walked away in disgust from the 'stupid' tiller. A couple days later I was determined to get the thing started or take it to someone who could fix it. Put more gas in the carburetor, pulled and pulled and still, no start. I backed up and noticed I had not put the lever to 'START'. Duh! Operator error. I did get the garden tilled and that soil looks so rich and dark. It's ready for me to plant the mesclun mix for a fall harvest.

Back in May, I arranged to have my field fertilized and seeded by Farmer Brad. He did it on a Monday, right before it was supposed to rain. Well, I had forgotten I had talked to Farmer Jack about spraying the field for an invasive plant that the sheep unfortunately don't eat (sedge). Wouldn't you know that Farmer Jack came to spray on Tuesday, the very next day that Farmer Brad had seeded?! Jeesh! But I think that the field did ok. It's not great because we haven't had much rain but the sheep aren't too thin and they're not eating the hay I put out.
Which reminds me. Last week I had the painters out here painting the house, power washing the decks and painting behind the barn. I had called Farmer Jay to deliver hay and he pulled into the field, dumped and stacked 100 bales of first cut hay against the back wall of the barn an hour BEFORE the guys were going to paint. My scheduling is bassackwards! I'm sticking with this farmer stuff though and am moving some sheep to a friends' pasture, rotating sheep off the back pasture and hopefully everything will turn out hunky dorey in the end.

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