We spent the weekend dodging raindrops and building fence. With some food thrown on the grill for good measure. Have to keep some holiday traditions alive.
Putting in fence posts with all the rain we’ve been having was a bit of a challenge. The dirt doesn’t want to come off the auger, wrestling with a shovel is required. And it doesn’t want to pound back in the hole around the post to hold it snugly in place when the fence is pulling on it or a gate is swinging.
We would wait for the rain to stop, head out with the Bobcat fitted out with an auger and start drilling. Half way down the rain would start again. But if we stopped where we were the hole would just fill with even more water, if we walked back to the house and left the Bobcat in the rain it would sulk and not start again until it was dry. So we’d finish digging out the post hole, drop in the post and then add a bag of redi-mix to mix with the water pouring into the hole and make a firm base for the post. By the time the Bobcat was back in the shop the rain would be thinking about stopping. But we’d head to the house anyway.
One hole had so much water pouring in so quickly Tom thought he’d hit a drain tile but we didn’t see any sign of broken tile so it’s just ground water. That one took 200 pounds of cement to anchor the post. The only time I’ve seen a hole fill this quickly is on the Curse of Oak Island on cable. They have the hope of pirate gold and we just have more post holes to dig.
Finishing filling the post holes with dirt over the cement will have to wait a week or two for the cement to dry. Last night we got an additional ½ inch of rain and we have puddles where we normally don’t. Pounding staples into the posts to hold cross wires will not be happening anytime soon.
Finding the cows grass has been a challenge. You aim for a level plain of nutrition, even though they will make what’s called compensatory gain and they wind up weighing the same the meat quality is totally different, you want them to always have the best quality of food possible and gaining at a steady rate.
Normally the spring grazing challenge is to have the cows eat the grass back just enough so it doesn’t go to seed and then move them to fresh grass. Once grass goes to seed it stops growing for the year, it’s job is done and it can rest on its laurels. But that doesn’t keep cows fed year round so you run them through pastures quickly in the spring and slow down as the summer progresses, then speed up again when the summer slump starts. Once temperatures get above a certain level grass stops growing, again. Unless the organic levels in your soil are greater than 5-6 percent. Then soil temperatures and moisture keep the grass productive and green. We’re a long way from those levels, remember Kimball, the field we’re fencing now, resembled the driveway organically.
This year with all the rain we’re trying to keep the cows above high tide. There’s no danger they’ll eat the grass too close to the ground and slow regrowth, they’ll only bite down as far as the water level. Finding enough green stuff above the flooding is a challenge.
The good news about all the rain is I can single handedly pound metal T-posts in all by myself. I know I basically said that twice but not having to stop after one post and wait for my heart to stop pounding out of my chest is a big deal to me! I did 5 in a row and could have done another 5 but that would have just been showing off.
How did you spend your holiday weekend? Candy
Fried Sweet Potatoes
3 Sweet Potatoes
2 Tablespoons Bacon Grease
Quarter sweet potatoes length wise and slice thin.
Heat bacon grease in cast iron pan. Once pan is warm add sweet potatoes.
Stir occasionally and salt to taste.
Cook until tender and starting to brown.