Landed up dragging Milkshake with the little tractor as the big tractor is too heavy for the mushy ground, especially with 1,000 lbs of dead pregnant cow on the front. Couldn't lift her with the boom as that would add the weight to the tractor which could get it stuck, and the buggy could probably not be strong enough to pull it out, while the big tractor and the truck are both too heavy. Sort of sacrilegious, not how I wanted to remember her. All the cows watched her being taken off, also something I'd rather have avoided. But it can't be helped. The downpour we had last night / this morning made everything muddier. Lakes in the pastures, vegetable garden, back garden, hayfield - ooooh, the mosquitoes are going to be bad this season.
Milking Buttercup again, although she still has colostrum so can't use the milk for people, but the animals are enjoying it. Should be pure milk by Thursday, then I can calculate how much milk is coming in, as maybe I can add some herd-share owners ! That would be wonderful. Amanda has a friend that wants 2 gallons milk a week, was just waiting for the next birth and then she could start collecting. Moved her and her calf, whom I've named Worsie (little sausage in Afrikaans, pronounced Vorrrrsy) back to the pasture as Buttercup was miserable away from the other cows, and as she's been milked before she knows the routine. Silly girl, has already lost Worsie this morning. She was lying sleeping behind the pond, where her mum had left her, but Buttercup was heading up to Little Africa looking for her. I went and roused Worsie, making her move towards her mum while Herbie went to coax Buttercup back to where we were, and as soon as they saw each other there were moo's from both, running and then sniffing. I just watched Little Red make Worsies' acquaintance in the back field. It's so nice to look out the kitchen window and see the cows eating and napping on green grass.
Managed to finish planting all 8 fruit trees yesterday. 10 hazelnuts, 5 osage oranges, 2 each of apple, pear, cherry and peach, adding to our new little orchard. Went and checked on the grapes, but they still look dormant, hope they made it through the Winter. The blueberries and elderberry also still look dead, the lavender are not showing any new leaves yet either, but counted 18 garlic sprouting. The 4 asparagus are nowhere to be found, wonder if the geese uprooted and ate them, or if they will still pop up. Need to plant the new 25, but not sure where exactly in the garden, or how to run the rows. Teri and Andy brought me a large comfrey which I want to put into the ground in the strawberry area, it has green shoots and is currently in the baby pool in the garage. Need to transplant the strawberries as they are higgely-piggely (?) not orderly rows anymore. Need to weed but the rototiller we have is too big for me to handle, and Herbie is concerned that if we tried a little Mantis it would cut my legs as the blades are seemingly very sharp. Wonder if my fire-thrower will work ?
I think Herbie is working on the tractors, I want to change into shorts and a hat and go out into the pasture and put up new fencing. Must take a spade with as those nettle thingies are starting to sprout up so I need to dig their tubers out.
Had a wonderful afternoon, we were just lazy together in the sunshine. Sorry Betsi :)
Surprised Herbie with a sort of meze-like dinner, 3 different kinds of my own cheese, my pickled beetroot and bread and butter pickles, walnuts and dried cherries, hard-boiled bantam eggs cut in half, spring vegetables in ranch dressing, chicken bites with honey mustard or sweet chili sauce, tomato, cucumber, green pepper and white asparagus with pink mayonaise, calamata olives, rye and pumpernickel bread, and of course that warm evening staple, G&Ts.