As per usual in December, we’ve received a lot of snow, and most nights the temperature dips below zero. Our outside spigot has frozen up & our annual water hauling adventures to the animals 3 times a day from the bathtub begins. Winter isn’t so bad, once you get into the routine… stoke the woodstove, get out the scarves and warm muck boots, drink hefty mugs of hot coffee. Our new puppy Belle has been keeping us on our toes, each day we take snowy walks with the 3 dogs around the farm teaching the puppy the lay of our LTD Farm land. Soon she’ll be a workin’ dog……but first we’re bonding!!!
The past several days have been odd, as it warmed up considerably. Having the woodstove going seemed rather pointless! In the city, people love it. But out here as the snow melted, the sun came out, the paths went from snow trenches to spring-thaw-like muddy trails. Puppy poops softened on the ground…yuck.
We’re back to normal freezing December weather as of this morning. The road in front of the farm is covered with glaze ice. Luckily we don’t have to go anywhere today. Hoping for a nice load of snow to insulate the ground and keep the flora safe til spring. Most of the little hazelnut, saskatoon berry & nanking cherry bushes we planted this year have their springtime buds formed, which means they settled in well. We saw evidence of the 500 aparagus crowns surviving their first year, and a cozy layer of snow will increase the chances of them carrying on into their second year. Then in 2013, we can actually harvest asparagus!
We had our Kickstarter Celebration party last week, and it was such fun! THANK YOU so much to all our very loyal supporters, customers, friends!!! During the party, it was just beautiful to see all these people being fed from our farm. Where there is a will, there is a way….we made it through our first harrowing year on the new land. We fed a lot of folks with the help of our farm’s soil, the animals, the sun and rain, and our hard work. Learning so much about this particular place has given us new insights for next years’ growing season. Once winter runs it’s course, we are ready to get back in the saddle of growing and raising the best food for our customers.
Farming on the new agricultural frontier is a serious challenge. We’re doing something that’s pretty unusual….heritage duck eggs, with ducks free-ranging on pasture. There’s a reason why “conventional” agriculture favors keeping poultry in confinement buildings their whole lives- poultry are delicious prey animals that attract a lot of wildlife attention. But a life indoors is not the kind of life we want for our ducks. Nor do we want to eat food produced by animals living in confinement. Unhappy animals living unnaturally, do not make healthy food for us to eat. We strongly believe in sunshine, fresh air, soil and forage for all our animals. How do you want to live? The golden rule applies across the species line at L.T.D. Farm.
We’re reconsidering our initial building plans for the new flock of ducks. Something solid and safe is definitely in order now, after many of our lady ducks fell prey to a predator only a month ago. Hoophouses are wonderful animal housing, but there is nothing to make them predator proof. The current flock of our lady ducks, and the baby ladies, are all safe and sound. Thank you to Javier and Little Blue, whose alternating sentry posts & diligent barking have kept the predator away from the ducks, as well as being a soothing lullaby as we fall asleep. We have a couple months before construction begins, so we can really thoroughly plan out the new building to perfection.