"We must achieve the character and acquire the skills to live much poorer than we do. We must waste less. We must do more for ourselves and for each other. It is either that or continue merely to think and talk about changes that we are inviting catastrophe to make. The great obstacle is simply this: the conviction that we cannot change because we are dependant on what is wrong. But that is the addict's excuse, and we know that it will not do."
—Wendell Berry

Saturday, 31 December 2011


Meet two new additions to the Cloud Farm. Gobbles and Mrs Gobbles.
I love turkeys! I love the way they strut around puffed up sort of like a galleon under full sail. I love the way they have to be involved with everything I do and have a comment for everything. I also love the way they taste.
I picked these two up when visiting a friend last week. He'd just had a dozen turkeys dumped on him and had no where for them to go. I agreed to take two as I wanted a breeding pair again. However I knew this would cause some problems at home as the child bride had given me specific instructions to not bring anything new home without consulting her first. Ever tried to hide turkeys? I stashed them in a spare pen and waited to see how long it would take for her to make the discovery. Three days. Not bad considering. I was in the poo for a while until both neighbours asked if we would be selling turkey next Christmas.

On wheelbarrows and old tools

"You would be amazed by what I can do" is usually my smart arse response whenever someone expresses surprise at our achievements here on the cloud farm. I want to put it on my grave stone along with instructions to wait three days.

Almost a decade ago I was shopping for a new wheelbarrow. My old one had finally decomposed into a pile of rust and corroded rubber after too few years of rather poor service. I was frankly glad to see it go and was looking forward to buying a new flash top of the line 'barrow. However I was quickly disappointed when I went through the local hardware stores. I was utterly appalled at the quality as well as design, not to mention the prices! Don't get me wrong, these were not the home cheapies either, I am talking about the top quality builders barrows. According to the salesman (a pimply teenager who obviously wanted to be elsewhere) you could get up to five years out of one of those barrows. He said it like it was something to be proud of.
What happened to the old attitude of making something to last a lifetime? You still see those old barrows in antique shops- and many of them could still be used for work. I have hundreds of woodworking tools, mostly eighty years old or more that still function as well as the day they were made and I can tell you they work better than the modern Chinese or American rubbish in the shops too! Doesn't anyone make anything to last in this day and age? I had to resist the urge to punch the salesman as he shrugged.
So I built my own.
I am a woodworker by trade and so I built a wooden wheelbarrow. The design is that of a traditional English barrow and it is the best wheel barrow I have ever had. It also cost me nothing at all. I had never made anything like this when I started this project, nor did I have any plans, just a few images in a book. I was actually surprised at how easy it was. I am also continually surprised at how well it works. It is more rugged than any modern barrow- it is going on ten years of solid work for almost no maintenance. It weighs about the same as a bricklayers barrow and can carry over one hundred kilos with ease. Ok, the spoked wheel is a conceit. I just wanted to see if I could make one.

Friday, 23 December 2011

Guinea fowl

The light is for warmth but it also brings the occasional moth. Yum.
A couple of posts ago I mentioned that the guinea fowl eggs had begun hatching in the incubator. Well all but one egg hatched. I must say I am quite enchanted by these little blokes. Unlike chicks, guinea fowl Keets are quite tough and independent. In just one day they were fully mobile and roaming the brood box hunting any insect foolish enough to fly in. 
Nap time.

We are trying to build up the guinea fowl flock. Not only do we just plain like them but they also have multiple uses around the farm such as tick control and eating insects in the veggie garden.
As guinea fowl are great fliers and will wander long distances I thought it prudent to see the neighbours before we brought any in. As it turns out both neighbours were all in favour of having a flock of guineas around. One already had a small flock of her own and the other had fond memories of guinea fowl from Africa. I am given to understand that the flocks will often combine during the day as they roam about but they will divide up to go to their respective homes each evening. We shall see. I also understand Guinea fowl are delicious.

Sunday, 18 December 2011

Our journey.

We, that is to say; the Wife and I, started our journey over a decade ago in Brisbane. The potted version goes sort of like this.
I had moved down from the north for a variety of reasons. I lived on the Darling Downs for seven years, first on my parents small farm where we kept chooks for eggs, goats for milk and meat and geese because we liked geese. Dad grew grapes to produce a bit of home wine and I kept bees for the honey and to brew mead.
Later I moved down to Brisbane where I lived a life of poverty and student share housing. I worked a lot of dead end jobs on minimal wage until I gained a trade as a cabinetmaker and ran my own business for seven years making historical reproduction furniture. Like this.
A fifteenth century folding "Savonarola" chair.
Business was actually good and I loved the work. It was always something new each day. However, banks do not like to lend money to the owners of small businesses so the prospect of ever owning our own property was non existent.
Now my beautiful girlfriend (who for brevity sake I will here after call BG), who would later become my beautiful wife (BW) was raised in Brisbane, Wynnum to be exact.  So I guess the place has its good points. This did present me with a problem though, as I had well and truly had enough of city life and wanted to return to life in the bush, preferably in the north. However I felt it would be downright cruel to take a city girl and move out into the bush and away from everyone and everything she knows. This meant we were doomed to search the small pockets of bush within a commute of the city. We quickly discovered that these areas were hotly sought after by all of the yuppies in their BMW's so they could have five acres to mow each weekend and keep a horse to never be ridden. This had the effect of pricing us utterly out of the market unless we were to sell our souls to be wage slaves doomed to the hell of commuting each week day. This was simply not an option.
Defeated, we gave up and returned to our rented house above the workshop in town.
Then we visited my parents, now living in Cairns, for Christmas one year. It was hellishly hot and humid, the northerner in me loved it, I was coming home. BG was appalled. We got off the plane into the humidity (at night) and she almost turned around and got back on! (Come on honey, you will quickly get used to it...). Well she put a brave face on it indeed and struggled through the Christmas celebrations somehow. A few days later we borrowed the folks car and went for a tour around the Atherton tablelands, just inland from Cairns. Here at altitude it was entirely different from the coast- cool and green. We fantasized about living here and agreed it would be impossible, and then on our way back home to Brisbane a day later BG (I still hadn't proposed for some reason) turned to me and said in a quiet but deadly serious voice "well do you think we should move here?"
To say I was absolutely stunned would be an understatement! I had to be sure she was serious and understood what she was asking. Therefore I asked her to think deeply about it for a month at least and then, if she was sure, we could begin looking it it seriously.

Here I will abbreviate the next couple of years for the sake of the narrative.

So we returned to Brisbane with its traffic and crowding and neighbours and rental housing. We dealt with life as it arises, breaking the news to dear friends and family, business difficulties, packing our worldly possessions, arranging finances, saying goodbyes and then early one morning getting into our car and driving north. We drove north out of the city with elation in our hearts. I remember listening to particularly fine Paganini solo as the sun rose and it was a fitting theme to the day.
We drove north through the small untouched towns that litter the coast and into the heat and cane fields, the rain forests and rain. Past the cattle plains which are vast waterlily covered floodplains in the wet, past the ghost gums and the place where I saw the min-min lights when I was a child, always with the sea on our right and the mountains to our left. We drove back to my old home and to our new home.
For a time we lived in Cairns working jobs to gather finances, saving fiercely. Here I finally proposed to my darling BG on a deserted beach (she said yes, which was fortunate when you think about everything we were engaged in doing).
Finally after banks and loans and lawyers and enough frustration and heartache we bought the first house with the banks money in a town called Malanda. Not the farm we had longed for all these years. No, the banks were not going to allow that but they would allow us just enough cash to buy a house in need of renovation but with plenty of "potential" as the real estate vampires called it. So we named our house "Stepping stone" so we would always be reminded of what it was to us on our way to the real goal. And we worked on that house, God how we worked, coming home from the job at night to eat a meal from the temporary kitchen and then paint ceilings before collapsing into bed at two in the morning before work the next day. But, in the end we had taken that dingy old house with its green laminate and red doored kitchen, pink bathtub and strange doorways that went nowhere and we turned it into a "modern queenslander" as the vampires called it. It now had a polished timber kitchen with all new plumbing and painted walls, walk in pantry, new bathroom with fancy taps, polished floors and painted throughout, stove with custom hood and sink with shiny taps. We even gave the dunny a lace ironwork window to let the pong out but the vampire lady told me this was a heritage feature adding elegance and design contrast.
We then argued with the real estate vampires as to what it was worth. We believed it was worth fifty thousand more than the bloodsuckers did and we insisted on this figure. The vampires plainly wanted a quick sale, and payday. Nevertheless we did indeed sell for the price we wanted- on the first day and to the second couple to see the house. The first couple to inspect just the hour before called back shortly after and also offered the same price. See, never trust a vampire, they have impure motives.
As we were selling we were also buying, not an experience I recommend to anyone. Our hobby for the time we had been at the Stepping Stone, when not renovating, was to drive the countryside looking for our perfect farm. We had made a list of mandatory requirements and a second list of desired extras. And we found it!
Perfect! OK no, not as large as I wanted, nor did it have enough sheds and it will need a new roof soon and the fences are falling down but still perfect.
After much heartache again and banks and lawyers and frustration we finally finished our decade long search. We had our farm.
Oh and the city girl loves it!

Friday, 16 December 2011


It would not be an Australian farm without a band of chooks roaming about the place.
Ivan the Red and his favourite wife, Griselda.
We keep Rhode Island Reds. They are In my opinion one of the best breeds for the farm being both a good meat bird as well as an excellent layer. They are also a tough and independent bird generally capable of dealing with life around the farm. We keep around fifteen to twenty birds at any one time. This includes two roosters as I find a rooster is good for the flock. He will generally stop any squabbling between the hens and will act as a sentry for the flock. He will also keep the flock together when out in the fields and prevent hens straying and making an easy target of themselves.
Last year I saw a goshawk come in low over the flock, looking for a bird small enough to carry off. Ivan, the rooster, gave a low warning cry to the hens- It sounds like a growl, before launching himself into the air after the hawk. Now chickens are not spectacular fliers in anybodies book and poor Ivan only made it perhaps ten metres into the air but it sure scared the hell out of the goshawk. Ivan must have looked like a red faced feathered cannonball fired from the ground and the goshawk took off at a great rate of knots indeed. Ivan was absolutely convinced he had given the intruder a right seeing to and proceeded to strut about the yard like, well, like a cock-of-the-walk for days afterwards. All the admiring lady hens certainly helped too. Ego is important to a rooster.
Hens lounging in the warm sun while Ivan keeps watch

While I like to hatch chicks naturally whenever possible we do also use an incubator when we need more chicks and no hen is obliging by going broody. Broodiness is bred out of laying hens for the most part because when a hen goes broody she also ceases laying. Not desirable in a laying hen. One solution is to keep a few hens of a breed that will go broody on a regular basis. My choice for this is the Pekin Bantam which in my experience make mothers par excellence. I intend to add a few to my flock as soon as opportunity presents itself. I use the bantam as it is easy to tell the eggs apart from full sized birds and thus prevent hatching out crossbreed chicks.
The incubator we use is a Hovabator. Since taking the photo above I have added an automatic egg turner, a fan and electric thermostat. A lot of money to compete with a chicken!
But when it works, the results are worth it. You will notice the two black chicks in the photo above. These are australorpe crossbreeds and are fine meat birds. Half of the birds hatched will of course be cockerels and these also make fine meat birds. I raise these on a mix of mixed grain, cracked corn, mill run, some greens and the excess milk from the cow. At ten to fifteen weeks we slaughter them for delicious organic chicken. This actually tastes like chicken and is a far cry from the insipid chemically raised victims you can buy at the supermarket.
Just as I have written the above, the first of some guinea fowl eggs I was given recently, has hatched in the incubator next to me. I am quite pleased as I have had no success in getting our guinea fowl to breed so far. Don't get me wrong, they certainly try each year. The two females will sit huge clutches of eggs in a hidden nest out in the field somewhere but they always fail to hatch.
I like guinea fowl, they are completely mad. Despite this they are also excellent insect eaters in the veggie garden and at the same time they wont do any harm to the plants. Guinea fowl are also reputed to keep snakes away and eat cattle ticks. I don't know if they actually do all of this as mine did not come with the manual but I like them anyway.

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Mango madness

A term I frequently hear used to describe this time of year is "mango madness". It is the hottest part of the year and when the locals go a little loopier than usual. It is also Christmas, the wet season, holidays and school holidays. However I am using the term a little more literally today.
I was offered some mangoes recently by a friend named Norm, "Fifty bucks for a boot load and pick your own". Sounded good but I wondered why they were so cheap, I suspected these were either leftovers unwanted by the pickers or else they were stringies.
For those who did not grow up in North Queensland, turpentine mangoes AKA "Stringies" were the first mangoes grown up here. They were bought in by the first white colonists and were found in all of the oldest areas. As a kid I would often be wandering around in the bush and would come on a huge old abandoned tree at the site of an old homestead. Nothing else would remain except perhaps some brick foundations and rusty tin. The trees were huge, I remember some that must have been thirty meters tall at least. Every summer in town they would dump literally tonnes of fruit on the ground where it would be piled into heaps to "compost" (read here -Rot. It had a smell I can still remember thirty years later). The smell of the trees gave them their name "turpentine mangoes" as the sap did indeed have a distinctly turpentine smell to it. The name "Stringy" came from the fibrous strings that ran through the flesh of the fruit and stuck in your teeth. A far cry from the modern hybrids so plump and soft fleshed. However there was nothing wrong with the taste of stringy mangoes and as kids, we were real connoisseurs and would only go for the best from the tree. As a rule we would only eat the fruit we picked and would disdain anything that had hit the ground, that was "for the bush pigs". At night the flying foxes would descend in the thousands to feast on the fruit. They would scream and squabble in the trees all night, dropping fruit onto the roof with a crash and crapping on everything is sight. You would never stand under a mango tree at night for any reason, to do so would almost certainly ensure you would be either pooped on or worse still, belted with a falling unripe mango. Likewise cars were never parked under the tree, bat poo is a very good paint stripper!
You could also eat the unripe mangoes if you know how. Raw they are like very hard green apples, but you would only ever eat one, any more than that and you would spend all night on the toilet. The local Chinese community used lots of green mangoes in their cooking and we often saw families gathering the mangoes from the trees long before they were ripe.
Anyway, back to the subject, I was assured by Norm that these were in fact Bowen hybrids. These are a top line mango indeed, also there was absolutely nothing wrong with them at all, they were just going to cost too much to harvest. So I arranged a time and went to visit Norm. Arriving at his rather nice farm on a stinking hot day I found that the mangoes were indeed exactly as he has said. Rows upon rows of fully grown trees were heavily laden with fruit needing to be picked. Norm explained that it would cost him eight thousand dollars to hire staff to pick, wash and pack all of the fruit. With the current prices and the glut of mangoes on the market he could only expect to get paid around four thousand. He looked pretty down about the whole thing. Mango madness indeed.
So I paid him fifty dollars for a boot load. I actually drive a Ute so I had brought three large tubs that I thought were about the size of a car boot. Norm saw these and asked if that was all I had to fill. Norm, like me cannot abide waste and I get the impression he would do anything rather than stand by and let the whole crop hit the ground. He left me to pick my fruit and I quickly picked three tubs worth of prime large organic mangoes. I then went and apologised to Norm- I had picked from the first two trees only and you couldn't see a bit of difference at all.
 At home I laid the fruit out on a trestle table to ripen. We actually intend to flesh off and freeze most of the fruit so we can enjoy mango all year round. Of course before this happens we need to sate ourselves on fresh fruit eaten as it ripens.

The Mango Civil War, North against South!
The Child Bride and I differ on how to eat a mango. All my life I have eaten fresh mangoes by slitting the skin into quarters lengthwise and then peeling the skin off a side at a time and eating it off the seed.
The northern way, slit the skin into quarters.

Then peel back each quarter and eat the flesh off the seed.

 Estela instead cuts the cheeks off the fruit before cutting a grid into the flesh of the cheek and turning the skin inside out.
The southern way. Cut the cheek away from the seed.
Cut a grid into the flesh
Reverse the skin so the flesh pops out.
I had never seen this method before moving down south in my teens so I call it the southern style. Certainly the Northern style uses more of the fruit with less waste but the southern style is pretty. So the wife and I have agreed to disagree.

Monday, 12 December 2011

Yes, I use a scythe. No, I don't want to borrow your lawnmower.

The title above is the response I most frequently use when people see me out scything.
Whetting the blade.
We use scythes simply because they are more versatile than a brushcutter or lawnmower. A scythe uses no petrol, needs no shop servicing and is just plain fun. The drawbacks? Well scything takes a certain amount of skill, I don't know if that is really a drawback though. A scythe also requires a degree of physical effort which I am also not entirely sure is a drawback.
I spoke to a rather sceptical acquaintance yesterday about using a scythe. He claimed he would not use a scythe because it is too much effort, he prefers his ride on mower. When I asked if he gets any exercise at all he replied that he goes to the gym twice weekly. I pointed out he could save both money and time by getting rid of both gym membership and lawnmower, buying a scythe and still achieve the end result. The advice was not received well. In reflection I find it odd that both he and I considered ourselves to be superior to the other for the exact same reason. It seems to be the modern attitude that there is something wrong with expending effort on work yet there is nothing wrong with effort spent on play. Is it me or this just plain childish?
I have just finished an article for the Earth Garden magazine on scything. I hope they like it.

If you are interested in scythes in Australia, talk to these folks. Their service is excellent!

Tropical Christmas

Another Great Australian Christmas rolls around. I have never been able to understand the whole fake snow and icicles thing here in Aus at Christmas. To me Chrissie has always been sweltering heat, outdoor barbeque's and swimming.  It will be our fifth Christmas here at the cloud farm and the first real Christmas for the littlest farmer. Last year he was still a meatloaf in nappies with no real understanding of what was happening. Now he is a toddler and is really getting into the swing of things. Soon he will learn about "presents" and our lives will be forever changed...

The weather is sweltering at the moment, unusual in our area as we would normally never go over thirty degrees. We are getting the big storms rolling back and forth across the tablelands, dumping a lot of rain as the lightning scares the bejabbers out of the dogs. The rain is good for the fields and with the heat allows the grass to really get a move on. This is important as we use the grass to help control weed growth. In winter we scythed the weeds in the top paddock in time for the summer growth of grass. This allows the pasture to outgrow the new weeds and we get a nice clean field without using any poisons.
 Some nice clean pasture in the top paddock. Mount Bartle Frere in the background.
We spend this time of year trying to get as many of the big projects finished before the wet season hits in January. Last year we were caught short when the wet came early in November and lasted for six months. This year I am struggling to get the new chook pens finished and re-render one of the water tanks. The chook pens are a large three shed affair and I am deliberately over engineering them to withstand the many cyclones we get. The water tank is one of those jobs no one likes. I have to remove the old top iron and build scaffolding so I can get inside. Then I have to clean it right out and render the entire inside with a layer of fine cement. What annoys me the most is that I only have to do this is because the first person to do it did a very poor job indeed. It is hot, nasty difficult work but it has to be done. We have no town water here so we rely on the three water tanks completely. Fortunately we are in a high rainfall area so we are usually alright and this is why we have been able to get by on only two tanks this year. If the tank is finished on time I will be able to cure the cement by filling the tank and then dumping the water several times over. This allows the cement to leach out all of the waste minerals without having them get into the house plumbing and clogging the pipes when they precipitate out. If it is not finished on time then that tank will remain unusable until we get enough rain later in the year.
The child bride, last wet season. Note the Drizabone and hat, essential wear during the wet.
It is like this for three months of the year.

The wet season is for us what the winter snow must be for those in cold climates. Pretty much all outdoor activities stop for the duration. The veggie garden comes to a sudden halt. The rain will literally beat to death anything it does not drown. Only a few tropical varieties such as the gingers and arrowroot can survive this treatment. I will, God willing, one year construct or purchase an industrial sized greenhouse and finally be able to grow most things year round. It will also do the garden soil good as it will sharply reduce the rate of leaching due to too much water.
Yes dear reader, there I am in last years garden.

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Meet the family. Annabelle.

I would like you to meet one of the family, Annabelle the jersey cow.
Yes, she can be a bit cheeky.
Everything on our farm has a purpose. Most of the livestock will eventually become meat and so they come and go. Others like Anna and the laying hens are permanent residents and will see out their days as part of the family. Anna is milked for most of the year and generally yields an average of six litres in each milking. She is the source of all our dairy. Milk, cream, butter cheese and occasionally yoghourt of exceptional quality. I have sometimes been asked why we didn't go for a dual purpose (gives both milk and good beef calves too) breed? I answer that it is simply because jerseys give the best quality milk of any breed. Simple. Jersey or jersey cross heifers also have value as house cows and can make a nice profit occasionally. However, the bobby calves are not much chop for meat I will admit. They take quite a while to put on weight and can be a bit stroppy. They do make good sausages though.
Anna and this years calf Leopold at her feet.
In the background is Boris, who will be delicious!
Anna is very much part of the family. She has her moods but is generally a sweet natured lady of refined manners. She is quite intelligent and will come when called and obey a variety of commands if asked politely.
We also have Boris, pictured above, a Waygu cross Hereford steer. In a couple of years he will become a lot of exceptional quality meat. In the meanwhile he will live a good and happy life. We also have Emily, Annabelles heifer calf from last year and Leopold, Anna's bobby calf from this year. Emily will go to a nearby farm soon to work as a house cow.

Some people think it is cruel to talk about killing animals we know for meat. I believe that it is important for all of us, meaning all of society, to know where your food comes from and how it was raised. To desire to eat meat yet be unable to face the reality of its production is absolutely reprehensible. It is this head-in-the-sand attitude that has made battery farms and feedlots, the concentration death camps of the animal world, possible. It is these people who actually condone and encourage this behaviour from industry.
We can truthfully say we know exactly how each animal was raised and eventually killed. Our rule is simple-

 We will provide the best life possible for each animal here. It will be healthy and happy. It will live a natural life. Its death will be absolutely unexpected, sudden and painless. No exceptions to this rule are ever tolerated.

This is far from misty eyed sentimentalism. I believe it is a simple ethical requirement if I am going to kill another being for its meat. It is also the core of producing quality food. You will never get a good steak from a stressed animal that has been driven, yarded, loaded on a truck, transported hundreds of kilometres, unloaded, prodded up a ramp into a room reeking of blood and then killed having just seen the animal ahead experience the same fate. I have worked in a slaughterhouse. I have seen it first hand.
I'll tell you another thing.  In this country you can only buy the second grade meat. All the top quality stuff gets exported. If you want to eat really good Australian beef, go to Japan.

Saturday, 10 December 2011

The piggies.

Our latest addition to the farm are the pigs. It has taken us nearly five years, four years longer than originally intended but they are finally here. We bought four six week old male long white cross duroc piglets from some friends down the road. I was over there originally to swap some geese- trading off the excess hen birds for a couple of ganders, when I commented that I wanted to get some pigs soon. My friends said that they had a pregnant sow and were expecting a large litter shortly, would I like some? Serendipity. So about two months after I found myself driving home with four piglets in a cage on the back of the truck.

Why four boar piglets? Well the plan is to raise two for pork and the other two for bacon and ham. We will sell off two, one porker and one baconer, to cover costs of raising all four. The pigs are kept in a central house with a small pen attached and have two yards of about a quarter acre each to roam in and dig up. These yards are currently pasture but will be resown with a variety of food- corn, sunflower, pumpkin, potatoes, wild gingers and arrowroot and the like when they are done. As the porkers are slaughtered at six months and the baconers at eight months, the yards and pen will be allowed to lie fallow for about four months afterwards. This will allow any pathogens to dissipate, the yards to recover and grow a substantial amount of food for the next four pigs to come. In case you think I have invented an incredible new way of raising pigs I should say now that this method is an old one. Nearly as old as keeping domestic pigs.  
Head down and bum up. Happy pigs always have a curly tail.

And so here we are.

It is half past twelve at night as I write this. I have finally made up my mind to post a blog about our patch of paradise for those interested.
I describe it as life in the clouds as a strictly accurate description of our farm. We are at 806 metres above sea level, or 2644 feet for those who prefer imperial. Our farm is located in North Queensland on the great dividing range not far from Mount Bartle Frere. We have almost ten acres of land. Approximately seven of which is cleared and relatively level, the balance is rainforest on the slopes to the creek. We sit at the very top of the valley which eventually leads to Innisfail. On a clear day we can see the sea on the horizon. Most days it is not so clear and we can see a lot of cloud from the inside. I like it, it is kind of private.
A view to our top paddocks from the house yard.

I refer to our place as a farm and so it is. We grow almost all of our own food. It is not a hobby and I detest being called a hobby farmer. I also dislike being called an organic farmer or a permaculturalist. I am simply farming by methods used by people for thousands of years. Modern, industrial, farmers I refer to as "chemical farmers" and they have earned the title.
Our current setup includes Cattle for milk and meat, chooks for eggs and meat, geese for mowing in the orchard and meat and pigs for meat.
You have probably guessed by now that we are not vegetarians.
But we also have an extensive vegetable garden which feeds us well. The orchard is still young and will be some time before we really see much from it.
The farm is a constant sequence of ongoing projects. I have just finished a set of pig pens. Currently I am working on the new chook pens to replace the rather dilapidated affair that was here when we arrived. After that I have to re-render a cement water tank, erect a carport, cement the floors to four sheds, finish the stockyard and fence the bottom paddock. I am sure there will be plenty of other projects added by the time I get through that lot. I don't mind the work though, in fact I have come to love it! My day is not complete unless I get some good hard labour in somewhere.
In any case, tonight's blog is just a quick overview. I will be going into things in more depth in the future. See you then.