Farmsplaining

Where do I even begin? I guess an apology is in order. It has almost been a year since my last post, despite promises of posting more.

It was entirely my fault. I’m sorry for that. All I can do now is work hard to do better in the future.

I well under estimated the sheer amount of effort that this farm was going to need still to get started and had to invest in a more full-time job to sustain myself as well as fund needed improvements and projects such as pens, land clearing and prepping, plumbing, housing, and automated systems. A lot of these things aren’t very glamorous or easy to document. Basically, at this current time, my farm looks like a tornado went right over it. Not to say we weren’t effected by the hurricanes, we were, and it destroyed fencing to a degree that was well beyond my means at the time to repair. I had to sell all of my goats shortly after as they quickly became a road hazard and huge stressor, all while I was having health issues. It wasn’t good.

I’ve finally, just last month, scraped together the funds and got my perimeter fence completely fixed (But not the stretch of fence that divided the property into a separate pasture area.) and it is really all I needed to get started again. Things were looking pretty grim for the farm’s future, but I’m not the type of person to just give up when something bad happens. I research more (pick myself back up), develop a new approach(dust myself off), and then I try again. Sometimes a wrench gets thrown into your gears for a reason and I feel like the reason here was I was trying to do too much all at once and my approach was bound to fail one way or another, even if the fence issue never came up. I was reminded to back up a little and take a better look at the big picture and as a result, I have a better concept of which steps I must take to get there and it sure wasn’t the way I was heading down before.

I’m feeling much better now, the rabbits seem to be too. They now have an automated watering system and are breeding like… well… rabbits. They seem healthier and cleaner and this shaved a good 40+ minutes off my daily chores – I don’t need to scrub and refill all those dirty bottles anymore! Bottles themselves are exceptionally expensive too and difficult to clean and like to break, so it saved me money in the long run for sure. Next, I’m wanting to work on a 50ft x 50ft duck pen so I can separate my Muscovy ducks out from the other poultry. Muscovy are surprisingly aggressive creatures and only other Muscovy seem capable of handling it. I will also be working on a chicken coop with a 50ft x 50ft run next to that as I’ve got several winter chicks about to reach egg laying age and people wanting to buy their eggs. This would leave my existing pen to the geese, which as of my writing this, just laid their first eggs of the season. Hoping to see goslings this year as my birds are old enough that the eggs should be fertile. We’ll see.

Other plans include installing a small shed I can keep just my tools and push mower in, starting a small herb and flower garden, planting a few blueberry bushes and fruit/nut trees.

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Part Two

The first thing we did after the move was get right to work putting up a decent fence.

It took days to clear the fence line we wanted and then we passed the torch on to the professional (He is located in Salt Springs, FL) whom built it by himself with very minimal tools. Each post was manually dug and buried without anything gas powered unless you count his pickup. Somehow, it still only took him about 2 weeks while working off and on.

 

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The posts arrived in one piece.

 

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Fence in progress. (It was raining a lot at the time).

 

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Before and After wire.

 

In the end it was all well worth it for the sense of security and boundaries that a fence creates. The birds were happy to be out of their pen and the rapidly growing puppies were delighted to have that kind of freedom and exercise. Not only that, but my canvas now had a beautiful and sturdy frame for me to paint within. Now if only the neighbors who just moved in after I bought the place would keep their dogs under control, everything would be perfect. (Already they keep digging under my brand new fence, liberating my own dogs in the process).