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posted Jun 10, 2011, 1:27 PM by Admin at Yacolt Mountain Farm and Nursery   [ updated Jun 10, 2011, 4:05 PM ]
Time is flying! I can't believe its almost the middle of June! Caroline and I,  have been progressively moving forward with the farm.  We have been learning a lot and adapting to our new environment. We have realized the need for improving our soil fertility and have gone ahead and ordered an additional 40 new baby chicks. We decided to buy feed instead of the fertilizer, so, we can have the birds fertilize our fields and get eggs that we can sell additionally. The plan is to move all of our Chickens and Turkeys  systematically over our fields. We will have three separate flocks, each with there own cargo trailer(salvaged from PDX) for a movable coop along with a  movable section of electric netting fence. 
We were very grateful to of had the help of Caroline's sister, Charlotte's boyfriend Jonas, with spreading some of the old horse manure  that was in the big barn on to part of one of our fields. Already, we can see a noticeable difference with how well plants have been sprouting and growing.  One big objective that we are  dealing with on our fields is the Quack grass. We've learned that this particular grass is allelopathic,  releasing a chemical so that it inhibits the growth of other plants surrounding it (some plants are more affected than others). A good example of  trees that are allelopathic are the Locusts and Walnuts. One way to deal with the Quack grass will be to plant Buck Wheat as a cover crop to try and smother it. 

All of the animals are doing really well and getting big. Duke and Laskah (LGD's) deserve a lot of praise, they have been doing a great job watching over all of our sheep,  goats, and birds. They have come a long way in a short time.  To me, it is great to have these big dogs get along so well with the sheep and goats and to trust them alone with them in the pasture. 

 I can't tell you how good it feels to be eating our own vegetables again. We have been mixing up our Kales, Mizuna, and Spicy Mustards for great tasty salads. It's nice  to see things growing and getting bigger. I keep thinking about this quote from a farm in western Massachusetts called Natural Roots...

"Let us first nourish the land
so that in return it may nourish us,
for any sustainable culture has its roots in the earth"