All of the pictures in this post are months old. Taken this spring when everything was fresh and green. Before it was ninety-five degrees and we hadn’t seen anything that could pass for rain in weeks. I had forgotten about them and normally wouldn’t bother with old photos in a new blog post, but then I thought, “why not?” In the story of this farm inconsistent blogging and forgotten photos have been a staple for the past year. They belong here as much as anything I snapped today.
I don’t remember the last time we mowed grass and I don’t foresee us needing to do so anytime soon. I forgot about the blueberry bushes I planted flanking the gate that leads from the back yard into the paddock that lies between it and the barnyard and only one of them has survived the heat and abuse. There is a fifty-fifty chance of a storm tomorrow, but if it behaves anything like all the other storms that have come our way it’ll break up just as it gets here, maybe spitting a little extra humidity into the air but never producing so much as a drop that reaches the ground.
Today the first lambs of our 2016 crop are fifty days old. Which means when the sun starts to set and the temperature abates by a couple dozen degrees we’ll be rounding them up and running them across the scale to see how they’ve done thus far, on nothing but pasture and their ewe’s milk. They look good; thick and stout and robust.
This guy will happily help despite the heat, and dunk himself in a stock tank of water straight from the hose afterward.
Of all the stock on the farm the heat is hardest on the pigs. Little ones don’t mind it so much, but the big sows and the growing feeders would prefer moderate weather and little humidity; something we can’t often provide in Michigan at the height of the season. Instead we make sure they’re misted down with cool water a few times per day, provided lots of fresh water. And, at least in the case of the growing pigs — for show or sale or breeding alike — hope they continue to eat, because no one likes a big meal when it’s hot.