Friday, 28 October 2016

Mower news and other farm updates

The sit-down mower's drive belt to the blade has melted and snapped. The replacement would be about 14,000 HUF so we've decided not to replace the mower as the bio-mowers (sheep) are doing an excellent job, most look rather pregant and are quite controllable with electric fencing
The sit-down mower will be used as farm tractor and can be used a lawn sweeper (picks up cut grass, small twigs, leaves and sheep poo), a grass dethatcher and trailer which is highly useful. The remaining areas can be treated with the exceptionally noisy scissor mower, now fixed after snapping the drive belt! this time just a 3000 HUF replacement.
Other rivotting news includes the replacement of the pressure switch on our home well water system. This switch was over 40 years old and the contacts have worn away, mainly from frying mice which borrowed into the connection. Our electrician friend, Csaba, found a replacement and installed it (a non-trival situation considering the wiring) and now our house has 3.5 bar water pressure :) I'm looking forward to saying goodbye to the days of showering under a drip.

Saturday, 1 October 2016

Autumn update

Its been a while since the last post and here are the latest update which kinda build on eachother
  1. Andy is finally on his feet and slowly limping around the farm.
  2. The sheep count is up at 20 - We've about 8 black racka now - This is the last year of Heepy being our active ram - Next year we will swap him out to make sure that there is no inbreeding.
  3. Most of the original trees on the farm are dead or on the way out - We've hired a tree surgeon who has felled and sorted the trees. We should get some planks of various lengths and lots and lots of firewood from these trees.
  4. We need to plant lots of trees so that we can have firewood and new fruit trees. The last batch of young trees have been successfully killed off by the flock of sheep who preferred tree bark to hay. The problem is that the areas that are suitable for planting are very exposed.
  5. The lovely Graham and Sue came out to help us with the sheep management. With their excellent help, we've managed to partition the orchard and former vegetable patch from the sheep. We've reused old fencing and gates, reinforced with pig-wiring around the orchard (pictured) and then laid an electric fence with two spring gates to seal off the former veg patch. Digging out the old posts were challenging even in the sandy soil as at the base of the 2m post was a wooden cross prevent us from pulling them out of the ground.
The next steps are waiting and testing the sheep-proofness of the fence and then planting fruit and wood-burning trees,

Thursday, 4 August 2016

RagWeed


Ragweed is the bane of our farm. It grows in every nock and crany; it grows fast and strong and when flowers, causes hayfever for virtually everyone around. This summer, we've had rain, sun, heat and the farm has turned into a ragweed jungle. We can also get fined by the local government for excess ragweed.

Left Achilles, 2016
Right Achilles, 2015
Usually, every summer at the crack of dawn, I get up and strim down the jungle and try to pull up the weeds. However, the last two years, I've been unable to walk over the summer, let alone use light machinary due to 100% snapping my right (2015) and left (2016) achilles tendons. 

The discovery of 2016 is that sheep don't just eat ragweed, they love it and go mental for it. Our flock of 13 sheep are in heaven munching away on the former vile
weed, which is full of vitamins and protein. My days of strimming and sneezing are over :)




Thursday, 3 March 2016

Lambs

Proud Mama
The two older lambs
Heepy the Stud
Latest Lamb
Sorry for the lack of blog activity, We've been distracted with other things. Anyway, This year we've had a good run with lambs with all our girls getting pregnant. Unfortunately the Racka lamb didn't make it but we've three strong lambs from Heepy, our Ram.
The last lamb, born on the 2nd March, didn't want to feed so Zolibacsi and HuszkaMama helped it find the udders and now it is drinking like a sailor


Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Cheesemobile

In all the craziness of last year, we forgot to mention that we bought a new car.
Here is the new cheesemobile in all its glory. It is a 20 year Suzuki 1.6L petrol 4x4 which comes highly recommended by the local vet and  mechanics. 
It is just perfect for the farm - The high off-road action means that when there is 150kg+ of animal feed in the boot, we are not fearful of our dirt road removing the exhaust system. The Suzuki can drive in 2w and 4w high and low which means the smallish (compared to 2.5 tdl pickup trucks) engine is quite efficient whilst still having lots of power. It doesn't really like driving over 100 KMH but cruise nicely at 90. The high roof means you can fill the car with stuff and there is a towbar too. Five people can also comfortably fit in. There are lots of these cars around so finding parts/spare bits shouldn't be too expensive or difficult

Most importantly it is green

Thursday, 15 October 2015

Baby Chickens and Ducks

We've not planned it but we've had a brown Japanese duck and a naked neck chicken sit and successfully hatch out eggs. We've got 9 baby ducks (5 yellow, 4 brown) and about 9 naked neck chickens and two Brahma chickens. We've left the poultry to do their own things, just making sure they are dry and fed with ground corn and water.
Cue the cute photos









Thursday, 17 September 2015

176 days later

Today, I've managed to do my first piece of real farm work this year. It has been 176 days since I completely snapped my Achilles tendon in my right leg and it still isn't 100%

Today, I ventured into the garden with the Stihl strimmer and spent three hours hacking down Weeds, fast-shooting Weedy trees(grow fast but don't give out much heat when burnt) and long grass.
It looks like next year we will have to get a piggy or two to go through the orchard and dig up all the roots of these pesky plants and eat all the grass. This requires careful planning and some new fences or some of our beloved departed pets may make a return from the grave