What a crazy winter/spring this is! The weather here in Ontario is beyond unseasonable. I mean, we’re talking 16+ and mostly sunny for the last week and in to the forseeable future. Let’s keep in mind that this is hardly mid-March! Our average last frost date isn’t until May 21 st, but with weather like this I could easily be planting a month earlier. Farmer B is also gearing up to get a jump-start on his work. He’ll be planting corn this year for the first time in 10 years, and he’s anticipating being in the field around 2 weeks from now if the weather keeps up.
This would all seem peachy, except..it’s just not normal!! And it can’t be taken for granted either. Before I (or anyone else!) goes rushing out to plant things, keep in mind that the risk of frost is still hanging over our heads until May, so don’t ruin all your hard work by jumping the gun. Mother nature can be tricky, fooling us in to a false sense of security, and then BAM! 2 ft of snow May 5th. (Not that I know this is going to happen, but it could.)
On the bright side, I have been able to get some projects well under way. For example, we have an old pasture to the south of our property that I’ll be using for my pigs this spring. The problem though, is that it’s been fenced and re fenced a few times, and somewhat resembles a patch work quilt of baler twine (my father-in-law’s fastening material of choice) and hog panels, mixed with a little chain-link, welded wire, and a spattering of high-tensile. This pasture hasn’t been used in years and is full of burs a.k.a the bane of my existence, and other over grown weeds. The worst part is that this is the most visible piece of our property! Anyone driving down the road has a clear view of this monstrosity. My mission? Reclaim this land and turn it in to something to be proud of!
I started by ripping down the welded wire and cutting off all the twine. What a job. I had to beat my way through burs so high they were getting stuck in my eyelashes! (Ok, and exaggeration obviously, but they were insanely tall.) This simple step made things look so much cleaner. I plan on re-fencing with 3 strands of electrified high-tensile wire. I also want to keep my costs down as much as possible. So you can imagine how excited I was to discover the huge expanses of high-tensile wire were completely re-useable, and complete with tensioners and everything. Apparently it was put up 10 years ago, but “didn’t work worth a darn”. (It was never electrified. I can hardly believe it didn’t keep the cows in :D) I’ll be taking it off, re-stringing it, electrifying it , and ta-daa! my almost new, free high-tensile fence.
I’m so excited to tidy this pasture up, and you won’t even be able to see the fence from the road. All you’ll see is our beautiful giant pigs meandering through open grass.
*I had some beautiful “before” pictures of this fencing project, but Farm Baby was playing with my camera, and haven’t seen it since. If it’s ever recovered I’ll add some pictures to this post*