September planning

Suprisingly September is full of lists and planning. The more lazy August days of moving animals and harvesting vegetables seems suddenly to be looking forward through the winter months and into spring.

The butcher will be taking Penny on Wednesday so the Belties need to be positioned in the barn field, then the barnyard so we can use our loading chute. I would like to have all the grazing animals on the orchard for a few days to pick the dropped apples. The Belties will then be grazing across the road until Blair leaves for her visit to the bull, a frigid snap keeps the troughs from thawing during the day or snow makes tending them difficult. The soil and therefore the pasture on the far side of the orchard is very poor. In an effort to add organic matter to that piece of land I want to keep the ewes fenced there, eating hay and dropping manure, before breeding season wtih Burgess in the well fenced barn pasture. The potatoes must be harvested before I can plant a quick cover crop on the barn side of the pasture where the ducks and geese will be penned for winter nights and released for daytime exercise.

Fall sowing the the hoophouse is underway and buckwheat is growing in the garden beds in anticipation of an October planting of garlic. Once the Three Sisters plot is harvested (no beans, few pumpkins and corn raveged by winds and an exuberate Golden Doodle), I will add composted manure from the run in and plant a cover crop. The asparagus needs to be weeded and cut and a sowing of winter killed buckwheat might help with next year's weeding. The fruit terraces, the location of my canning tomato plants, can be turned over to the goats after protecting the rasberries, elderberries and comfrey.

Like spring, fall is a very hopeful season. I hope that I have stored enough hay for the winter, that breeding is successful, that birthing will not happen during unusually inclement weather, that the fall planted crops will feed us through the cold months and that this planning will keep the livestock healthy.