"United we bargain, divided we beg."

Saturday, October 11, 2008

First Frost

The night before last was the first frost; not a very hard frost, but then last night was harder. I feel so bad for the baby goats, I've been separating them at night in the new field shelter, which has a gap running all the way around on the bottom. I'll need to insulate it somehow, probably with straw bales. Valentine was all fluffed up in the morning. The Nubian twins have short, sleek hair and can't fluff. But they are fat enough to be insulated.

The frost also means we have to start using our hay. I hadn't been giving anybody any hay, because everyone was looking so fat - especially the goats - on pure pasture. But after the frost, the grass loses most of it's nutritional value, even if it looks as green as ever. Also I'll be moving all the goats to the new enclosure for the winter, which doesn't have very much browse, so they'll need more hay. I think I'll most likely go through a bale in three days. I have seventeen bales, plus the loose hay we put up from the small field, so I'm hoping that will take us through December. Maybe not.

Hay is so expensive. Next year, I'm going to use the whole front field as hay and just not have any lawn. I've never been a big lawn fan anyway. If you want it to look nice it takes so much work and so many chemicals. Then you have to mow it and mow it, using gasoline and spewing pollutants. For what? A smooth green expanse of poison. (Of course, I never used chemicals on our lawn, which is why it was yellow instead of green - field of pure dandelions. But you get the point.) I'd rather make the space productive and use it as animal feed. We ought to get twenty bales off it, easily. That saves me about $120, well, minus whatever I pay the neighbor to bale it.

It is still gorgeous outside. I'm going out to enjoy it.


~ Denise ~ said...

great idea about turning your lawn into hay...I wonder how I could go about convincing my planned community association that I'm joining you in making less greener, more usable pasture? ;) ha