The Wet Part Of This Storm System

We made it through the first part of this storm system over the weekend with breezy winds, temperatures in the high 30’s and more than 5 inches of rain. It is a soggy, muddy mess all around the farm. The pastures are sodden, the swamp is twice the size it was last week and is again running over the culvert that can’t keep up and we have a new pond in the back of the big hay field.

When I checked it Sunday afternoon, I spotted about 20 ducks enjoying the day swimming to and fro around the pond. They seemed very content even though it was windy and very rainy, they continued on their lazy meanderings as if it was a sunny summer day.

The vibrant sun would pop out from time to time as the clouds whizzed by, and rainbows could be seen brilliant for brief glances, but most of the time it was simply wet with occasional periods of chunky rain that was nearly snow. Round two of this storm system should bring colder weather with snow or ice predicted the rest of the week. Sunday afternoon the rain changed more to snow and began sticking around 5pm.

We will be watching and listening our forest during upcoming week. With the ground saturated, the heavy weight of snow and ice on the branches could cause breakage or uproot trees easier than when the ground is drier.

Since mrssusanschmidlin.wordpress.com is nearly out of data, the complete story can be found at SchmidlinAngusFarms.com with all the pictures! I encourage you to check it out, get your information in on the FOLLOW button spot, and get every story in full color. I would be grateful if you did want to do any cyber shopping to use my links on the stories. By using my links, I get credit for directing people to shop and may make a small commission without any cost to you! Your support helps support the website to be available for the daily stories. Thank you for supporting SchmidlinAngusFarms.com

Twice This Week

Being a producer for the Oregon Woodland Co-Op has given us the opportunity to clean up our forest after our storm damage and subsequent logging. We have been using the wood that is not viable to make poles or lumber by removing the excess scrap wood left in the forest. We are cleaning up our forest by removing the wood that would dry out making fuel for a wild fire. In the beginning we anticipated this project being on a fairly small scale but we are finding that the more we clean up the woods, the more we find that can be done to make our forest healthier.

We are still leaving plenty of debris piles for those small creatures of the forest along with the rotting wood needed to promote the spores, fungus and underground creepy crawlies. Continue reading

Racks, Stacks And Cribs

While the end of last week was spent processing wood chunks into small enough pieces to be considered kindling, we have moved on to the next step. Now have a crib full of kindling pieces along with the green garden cart, our tan pull behind cart and several tubs filled to the brim. My garage/holding area/kiln is filled with kindling as we heat up the coils in the floor, run fans for circulation and crank up the dehumidifiers to dry the kindling before we can begin the next process of bundling.

For those of you who are old enough to remember, there used to be a commercial that played on TV for years. There was a housewife who needed a powerful cleaner tackle the task of her house duties. The scrub bucket was sitting by her feet, a mop right next to her, she twisted the top off of the bottle she was aiming at the screen and took a deep whiff of the cleaner before delivering her line. With near jubilation she remarks, “smells just like a Carolina Pine forest!”. The line doesn’t truly fit our non-pine area of the country, but the sentiment is right on.

That single line of dialog has stuck with me for years and even decades. I use it when I walk into the woods after a period of being away. I declare it, sometimes loudly so all the cows can hear, after the barn has been de-mucked, lime sprinkled and a new fresh layer of wood chips added to the loafing area. I speak it out loud in the house after the floor still is drying after being mopped, it doesn’t matter if I am the only one home or not or for that matter if I used a pine, lemon, orange of bleach smelling cleaner. And now I speak it out loud every time I walk through the garage. Any time there are good odors from wood products, that dialog comes forth.

The smell of wood drying is pleasant and very strong right now with all the fiber in the garage at this time. Although visitors remark about the garage smelling good with only the regular pallets of firewood bundles in our inventory, I was nose-blind to the subtle odor until we got this influx of drying kindling. I’m going to enjoy the smells while I can for soon the garage will be back down to only our regular weekly inventory levels.

Since mrssusanschmidlin.wordpress.com is nearly out of data, the complete story can be found at SchmidlinAngusFarms.com with all the pictures! I encourage you to check it out, get your information in on the FOLLOW button spot, and get every story in full color. I would be grateful if you did want to do any cyber shopping to use my links on the stories. By using my links, I get credit for directing people to shop and may make a small commission without any cost to you! Your support helps support the website to be available for the daily stories. Thank you for supporting SchmidlinAngusFarms.com

 

A Year Of Reflection

I’m not a big proponent of New Year resolutions, I tend toward more of Past Year reflections. This year that has passed seemed to be a whirlwind of repair, replant, replace and respond to challenges as they appeared rather than planning ahead and being prepared for whatever was to come.

The busy planting season during the dormant winter, both in the riparian zones around the river and the replanting of the forest up on the hill, did well this year and we had little die-off and better retention than the previous five years. There was an epic fail when I tried to dissuade the elk from pulling up the bamboo stakes that were holding the mesh cages around the cedar seedlings. The elk seemed to be enticed by the hot sauce I was dribbling on the tips of the stakes even when I mixed it with dish washing detergent and crankcase oil. For weeks on end, it became a twice daily ritual to check the disturbed mesh cages and replace the pulled out stakes. I probably would have been better off to place a salt lick over on the neighbor’s property to entice the elk to get their spice over there (I must put in a disclaimer here because I only thought about putting a salt lick on someone else’s property and would never actually do such a thing). Continue reading

Rushing With Kindling

Last year was our first year producing firewood for the Oregon Woodland Co-op with October being the anniversary of our first delivery. We should have remembered that at the end of December last year we were scrambling to keep enough kindling split, dried and processed into bundles to keep up with demand, but we conveniently pushed that thought aside as we concentrated on the premium hardwood bundles that are a new addition for our project this year on the farm. Continue reading

A Little Me Time

The dry day that Mike had been waiting for had him on the day-long route to get a pickup load of grain.  I wanted to take advantage of a day without the supervisor around so I took the opportunity for a little time to attack the log deck and get a little firewood cut.

With the two dogs, my trusty earplugs, metal toed boots, and a freshly sharpened (thank you Mike) chainsaw, we moved to the log deck in the close landing. When I am working with the saw, the dogs are busy scouting around so I don’t have to worry about them. They stop by every once in a while to make sure that I can see them for a moment or two of check-in time before scooting off in another direction. Continue reading