August 6, 2013
More Of The Bedford Farm
As you may know, I am on vacation in Maine and my days have been filled with a great deal of fun and a great deal of good food. It's been so busy that, unfortunately, I do not have another blog from Maine to share with you yet. Instead, here's what's been happening at the Bedford farm in my absence.
1 When I first got my team of Friesians, a friend gave me this sign, which is posted outside one of the gates of the farm. The Friesian is a horse breed originating in Friesland, Netherlands.
2 Meindert, who suffers from arthritis, was being saddled up by Betsy, my stable manager. Betsy is good about exercising Meindert regularly and gently.
3 Dorji Sherpa is now assisting in the stable. Friesians are graceful and nimble for their size and it's believed that ancestors of this breed were in great demand during the Middle Ages as war horses.
4 Because of his arthritis, Meindert wears specially fitted boots on his rear hooves when Betsy rides him.
5 In the Late Middle Ages, heavier, draft type horses were needed and the breed nearly became extinct more than once. The modern day Friesian is quite popular and is used both in harness and for saddle riding.
6 Friesians are known for their black color, their long thick manes and tails, and their wavy feathers on their lower legs.
7 Betsy walking Meindert through the allee of linden trees towards the lower gate on Maple Avenue
8 Meindert waits patiently as Betsy open the gate.
9 A stone mounting block was positioned outside the gate.
10 The weather was cool and crisp and perfect for a leisurely horseback ride.
11 Back in the stable, Dorji had his hands filled with grooming the other Friesians.
12 And speaking of busy, the parents of these newly hatched barn swallows spend their days feeding their hungry brood. If you look closely, when building this mud nest, the swallows also used horse hair. You can see one hanging down.
13 This chick is screaming for more food!
14 I asked that some of the lower tree branches be pruned up. Roger is assembling a long pole saw.
15 This type of light pruning is quite manageable for the crew. Trimming low-hanging branches increases the field of vision.
16 This is the garden where the hardneck garlic was recently harvested. Ryan replanted it with pumpkins and gourds for autumn baking and decorations.
17 It's only been a couple of weeks and these plants are growing very rapidly.
18 Wilmer has been busy pruning the plants along the long pergola. Here he is working on the standard wisteria.
19 The wisteria really needed Wilmer's attention!
20 Of course, composted mulch is used by the truckload. It's very satisfying to know that all of this organic black gold is made right at the farm.
21 Last week, I reported the the nepeta, or cat mint, was pruned back. Phurba is spreading mulch all along the beds of the pergola.
22 Very nice and neat!
23 This is not a hawk, but a turkey vulture, a large carrion-eating bird.
24 Driving around the farm, one of the Kawasakis suffered a flat tire. It was brought to the equipment shed for repair.
25 Dominic quickly discovered the puncture - a shard of metal.
26 The vehicle was lifted by a hydraulic jack.
27 This Kawasaki needs new tires and those have been ordered. In the meantime, Dominic used a tire sealant for a quick fix.
28 He filled the tire with air and it was good to go.