All That Manure

By standing in the nursery field I can look across the river to the far field and see the rows of manure that was loaded out of the barn and hauled up the road.

A thin layer of dark colored manure spread in rows in a grass field.Spring rains will wash the muck into the ground where it will be a good soil amendment and a good boost of nutrients for the grass growing there.

While Mike was doing the spreading he noticed a tree that had fallen over the fence line along the old railroad grade. Of course it did not fall into the grade, it fell over the fence and into the grass/hay field.

Not sure how Mother Nature knew that my next task after finishing up pruning the fruit trees was going to take me up the road to the far field to trim up along the fence. The downed tree is big enough to make one log for shipping and the rest will be cleanup with most of it being made into firewood sized pieces for the wood stove.


Sitka and Willow

Meanwhile, back in the woods down beyond the show barn, Sitka delivered her heifer calf on March 12. Willow weighed in at 67 lbs. Sitka showed no signs of imminent motherhood (10 babies will do that to a body) and she ate a hearty breakfast in the barn that morning. But by 3pm she had already moved to the woods, delivered the calf and had it all licked off and well-fed.

Black Angus cow and calf near woods.We moved the pair up to the barn (yes this is the same barn that we had just spent a whole day mucking out, thank goodness). By locking the show cows out of one side of the barn and leaving the gate open it gives the large area behind the house and side of barn to the mother and daughter to spend some time without competing with other animals.

Welcome to the farm SAF Willow.



Bull #19

Our yearling bull #19 has been out in the bull pen while he has been awaiting sale. Since we have buyers looking, we are going to give him his own post.

SAF Brando was born 3/18/2017 to SAF Marlo.  At birth he weighed 75 lbs.

Registration paper for yearling bull.His American Angus Association Registration number 18892596. He is considered a ‘calving ease’ bull, suitable for small cows and first calf heifers.

Fairly gentle in the barn, when it comes to feeding time Brando gets right in with the crowd to get his fair share.

Barn Spring Cleaning

A beautiful spring day brought temps in the 60’s and the mud had begun to dry. It was a good day to get the show barn cleaned out (it really needed it).

First order of business was to switch the loading forks on the front of the tractor to a bucket for scooping. A black and white dog riding on the back of a tractor.Jackson the dog was happy to ride on the back of the tractor while Mike drove over the bridge to do the swap. (We keep the rotary mower on the back of the tractor for counter-balance weight, the dog thinks of it as his own personal deck).

Once the tractor is configured, the big tractor is attached to the manure spreader (honey wagon) and brought over to the barn for loading. Once the wagon is full, the load will be hauled up the road to the far field where it will be spread in a thin layer across the hayfield as a boost of nitrogen for the grass.

This one barn was an all day job with three full loads on the heifer side of the barn and one load on the cow side. Now the sweet smell of spring is much more pleasant out there.

Gauge and Dimension

Black Angus Cow with newborn calf.The newest member of the farm was delivered by Gauge on 3/9/2018, we had moved her out into the nursery field 24 hours earlier since she looked close to calving. Dinner was fed as usual, we knew that Gauge was in active labor, but she stopped to eat before finishing the whole birthing thing.

Less than an hour after eating as much hay as she could gobble up, Gauge plopped out her baby. Dimension was born in the last few bits of light that lingered after the sun went down and she was surrounded by all the other calves and mothers since Gauge did not have time to walk away from the meal. We heard the commotion from the house-side of the river and went over to check on Gauge.

Once we moved the noisy relatives away, Gauge was able to concentrate on the newborn that was trying to stand up for the first time. We knew Gauge had everything under control so we went back to the house for the night.

The next morning, we got a good baby picture of  SAF Dimension who weighed in at 75 lbs. and feeling comfortable right in the middle of all the other cows and calves.

Was Going To Advertise

Canopy removed from pickup and placed on ground.I was just about to put an ad on the local community social page for the pickup canopy that we removed and no longer needed when we had someone come forward who could use it.

It happened that the Washington County Road Crew had pulled in the driveway requesting to park their tractor for a few nights instead of driving back all the way back into Hillsboro to the yard.

The canopy had been resting right near where the tractor would be parked so I inquired if any of the crew knew of someone who could use the fiberglass shell. Right away, one of the crew said that he could use it.

Canopy set onto pickup truck.

Another member of the Road Crew came out the next day and said that if the first guy changed his mind about wanting it, he would take it. A friendly war of words broke out, but the original taker became the one who got it.

We were happy to dispose of the shell  while the crew person was delighted to re-purpose the unwanted item and now I don’t have to advertise after all.




Before I begin this post, a warning is needed.

LOP stands for Land Owner Preference and is the tag that is purchased through the Oregon Fish and Wildlife for harvesting elk that roam on our property. For those who object to harvesting i.e., hunting and shooting wildlife for food, do not continue to the next page. Continue reading