March 4, 2015
Cleaning the Equipment Barn
Usually by the beginning of March, we’re able to start some of the outdoor grounds work here at the farm, but of course, little can be done when we’re still buried under several feet of snow… And here's a surprise - the northeast is expected to get more this week! In fact, as we write this blog, it is snowing heavily in New York City and the weatherman promises eight to 10 inches in Bedford with ice as well as snow! So, to keep my garden crew busy and out of the cold for extended periods of time, I thought it was a good idea to tidy up the Equipment Barn. Keeping seasonal supplies well maintained and properly stored will always save time in the long run.
My Equipment Barn is quite large - about 40 by 120 feet, with a substantial amount of height. On one side, I store mowers, blowers, John Deere tractors, and other pieces of machinery. For this cleanup, we cleared the area, swept the floor and inspected every item before returning it neatly to its spot, so everything is organized and ready for spring. It was quite a task, but it’s always rewarding to see the finished project…
Depending on how long it takes to thaw from this deep freeze, I may need to come up with a few more important indoor chores!
Enjoy these “before” and “after” photos…
1 The Equipment Barn is used to house all the farm vehicles as well as the hand tools and carts and mechanics tools for daily use.
2 We have an assortment of trucks - heavy duty pickups (Ford) for snow plowing, and carrying plants from the nursery and to my other homes; John Deere tractors - a 65 hp and a 95 hp, for mowing, haying, lifting, etc.; a dump truck; a Hi-Lo for changing windows, roofing, masonry, etc., and many mowers, wheelbarrows and even our old Martha by Mail truck.
3 In addition to the cleanup of the shed, we are also painting and staining all of the wooden outdoor furniture we use on the farm. That project is going on in another building.
4 Here's Chhewang moving the trucks and tractors out of the way... Do you recognize the truck on the right?
5 It's the old Martha by Mail truck, which is also safely stored in the Equipment Barn.
6 I have some antique lawn mowers, some old tractors, and haying equipment, too. The Martha by Mail truck was a postal delivery truck from the 80's which I bought years ago and had painted green.
7 Smaller pieces of equipment were moved, so the area underneath could be thoroughly swept.
8 The lockers on the back walls are used by the guys to store their work clothes and boots. You can see why the area was in such need of a cleanup.
9 In this corner, we store wheelbarrows on end to conserve space. They also look much more tidy this way.
10 We use Fords, GMCs and some Chevrolets on the farm. They are cleaned and stored in the Equipment Barn in front of the hand tools - rakes, shovels, pitch forks, etc.
11 I tried to use very utilitarian lighting and fans everywhere on the farm - there is an overriding theme of slate, galvanized metal, practical, utilitarian fixtures, heavy duty hardware, etc.
12 After each piece of equipment was dusted off, checked for sharp blades, clean filters, and proper oil/gas mixtures, it was wheeled back to its proper place in between the wood chipper and my John Deere tractor.
13 The concrete floor looks much better.
14 Mowers, blowers, tillers and generators all parked neatly together and ready to use.
15 This John Deere tractor is great! It is often used for mowing the hay fields and plowing the carriage roads.
16 This Cub Cadet is one of the favorite tools for mowing the paddocks and the few lawns on the farm. It gets a big workout every year.
17 Next to the John Deere tractor is this vintage Allis-Chalmers tractor from the 1940s.
18 I did have this tractor in working order at one time. It has not been put to use in a long time however.
19 Quite a different look from the John Deere. I would love to see how fast the fields could be mowed with this old tractor!
20 Everything is back in place - just a little more sweeping and it will look great!
21 Here is another view from the other side of the wood chipper.