Category Archives: Hand Farming

Mole Meditations

Spring, the grass is growing and it is time to bash the mole hills. This period of dry sunny weather has made the mole hills friable and easy to spread, so I have been out in the hay field armed with a rake and doing just that. While raking, I have been thinking on the benefits of the mole. There must be some, surely??! Over … Continue reading Mole Meditations »

The Faroe Islands and the Smallholder’s Cow

March has been a busy month for us. After a lot of waiting and planning, we went up to the Faroe Islands. The recent eclipse provided the perfect motivation to get us to a place we have long wanted to visit. The farm museum at Saksun, Faroe Islands, with the tidal lagoon and mountains beyond So with farm sitters in place, we loaded up the … Continue reading The Faroe Islands and the Smallholder’s Cow »

Winter Wood Work

When it is cold, frosty or even snowy winter tree work is a great way to keep warm. We have been working on restoring and laying the hedge that runs behind our house, all done with hand tools of course. Amazing pink interior of a felled Willow limb Phil began by tackling a large willow that has been threatening to collapse onto the Trust car … Continue reading Winter Wood Work »

The Scent of Summer

Twice a day I go to the barn to fetch hay for the livestock. Just recently I have reached a particularly fragrant layer in one of the stacks. As I pull out the hay I am surrounded by the rich, sweet smell of summer. Happy hay munchers Looking at the hay that is coming out, which is very rich in herbs, I think this must … Continue reading The Scent of Summer »

Harvesting and Using Bracken

We held our last scythe course of the year on 30th August. As well as cutting grass we cut a large patch of bracken that grows in the Quiet field. The participants got a lot of satisfaction from cutting the bracken. The stems are stiff and widely spaced and so cut easily, even if the cut material can be rather heavy and tangly to carry … Continue reading Harvesting and Using Bracken »

Hay Making 2014 – Mackerel Sky

“Mackerel Sky, Mackerel Sky, Never long wet, Never long dry. The weather is changing so it is time to bring in the last of the hay that is ready…. Bringing in the last of the hay at 8pm this evening …..or put hay that needs longer to cure up onto racks to keep it safe from the forecast showers. Building racks with hay that is … Continue reading Hay Making 2014 – Mackerel Sky »