Bredbo Valley View farm - providing quality education in Permaculture and sustainable living practices.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

We're Back!!!

Well, we’re back. We all took a break over Easter after a couple of hectic weeks before. So where did we get up too? I attended the AGM of the Bee Association, at which I met the famous Mrs Duck Herder. A lovely lady, we had a chat about her bees, compost and bio dynamics, shared secrets about the location of various apple trees and the best acorn places in Canberra. It was nice to meet a fellow Blogger face to face. On the way home I nearly skittled a dozen small deer on the highway, a learner driver in front of me slowed down – I thought it was so I could over take; but in fact it was to let a herd of deer across the road.

On Good Friday I went into town to collect acorns – I manages to get a trailer load, but because everything was wet I had to feed them to the pigs almost straight away. I had a nightmare time driving into town on the Monaro Highway so I decided not to go in again over Easter. That afternoon I saw a fox dash off away from the chook pen in the half light. A quick check of the chickens revealed some missing, so he was obviously busy

The fox didn’t get the Easter Bunny. Eggs where scattered across the farm Sunday morning and the annual Easter egg hunt was conducted with the full enthusiasm of all involved – and chocolate was eaten in large quantities for breakfast – but not by me. Funny how the Easter Bunny puts eggs at either end of the far and the clues all follow the longest route. That Easter bunny sure is a sadist.

We had good rain over the weekend, 15mm one day and 20mm last night. It started raining at about 9:30pm and didn’t stop until 5:00am good solid soaking rain. Somewhere between 3:00am and 5:00am the Cook and I had a good chat about my stupid idea to put a bell around one of the goat’s necks and chains on the others. All three of the goats had decided that the spot under our window was the best place to stay out of the weather and the “ding-ding” of the bell kept us awake for hours. When the bell wasn’t ringing, the other two goats would walk along the veranda dragging their chains – I can imagine roast goat will be on the webber tonight (still no oven).

The Cook had spent a couple of very long days in the garden, mulching, composting, weeding digging and replanting. It all looks rather splendid and with the over night rain should take off. I think she was looking forward to a good nights sleep. Today she has been in the garden harvesting the rhubarb and cooking it up – mmmmm!! yummy rhubarb strudel for dinner. She spent some of Easter bottling tomatoes as well and now we have almost a winters worth of those as well.

We have another piglet schwarm. A schwarm, for those who don’t know, is a group of about ten or so piglets that run around the farm in a small group – like a swarm of mosquitoes but more devastating. Luckily they have been pretty harmless so far, I think they have nabbed a couple of duck eggs, some lose acorns and the chook scraps. They are an absolute cack to watch and take on a character all of their own. The schwarm only lasts a couple of weeks, once they are too big to escape under fence of their pen it’s all over. It’s when the pigs are truly free to range, unless they go near the garden, then they are dinner.

I think I should check the compost heap if I don’t see the goats tonight……..


Em said...

Hi, I found you through the Duck Herders blog, just wanted to introduce myself :)

My OH and I are currently in Sydney (blergh!) but are planning on being in Cooma within the next 12 months so we will practically be neighbours!

Oh and my man has a gun and I am in the process of getting my licence so if you need anyone to help you with your fox problem we would be more than happy to help!


Valley View said...

Hi Em.

Thanks for visiting, you'll have to drop by one day after you've unpacked. Thanks for the offer to help rid this place of foxes - I'll probably take you up on that, you'll just have to show me you can dispatch the fox with a clean shot and your away. Are you going to live in town??

Em said...

Sounds good :)

Neither of us have had a chance to hunt yet unfortunately so we are definitely amateurs there, but neither of us have any problems shooting a <1 inch group at 50m so it is really just a matter of spending time without the rifles watching and learning the animals behavior. Hopefully we will meet someone at the Cooma SSAA range who can take us under their wing!

As for in or out of town, at first we just plan on renting and dont have a particular preference, although a landlord who would let us garden and keep chooks would make us both very happy! Once we are ready to buy we will be looking at small acreage out of town but wont decide where or how much until we know the area a bit better.