Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Meet Rosie ...

so where the heck have we been!

well .... we moved.  a bit further out of town .... but 100 acres with two dams and a lagoon (aptly already named the Lollipop Waterhole) which is spring fed.  and it has a house.

so a home..... we are blessed.

i need to start blogging a bit again.  but for this moment, today i'll just share that we have taken another HUGE step towards sustainability today.

meet Rosie .... our House Cow.  to say we are nervous and excited all in one breath would not be an understatement.  taking on the long term responsibility of this big and generous an animal (we will get so much milk!) is HUGE .... we are blessed and we take this seriously.

she is what is called a Golden Jersey.  she comes to us from a local dairy farm and we adore her!  she is about 8 1/2 months pregnant via AI with an angus calf.  so we already have the next generation of food for the plate ready to go!  her nature is beautiful ... she was following us around today as we finished her overnight paddock for her.  i can tell you she loves a good scratch behind the ear and above her tail.  and she is a licker!  probably just to get the taste and smell of us ... but very approachable and gentle .... we adore her!

we are doing the right thing, and rotationally grazing her and the calf.  our soil isn't that great and needs LOTS of enriching!  so very shorts stints on small paddocks is the way to go.

Geoff Lawton has done a great video on advanced cell grazing that allows you to manage and rotate your animals around your entire property easily .... have a watch here.  (btw:  if you haven't signed up for his stuff, you should, it's free!)  ours is a much simpler and modified version specifically designed to manage a single cow and calf and ensure maximum nutrients for the soil.  once we are comfortable with this, i reckon the model has significant use for our entire property.

more on that to come as we have a bit of infrastructure to do to ensure that she has adequate grass to graze on (even with an auger it takes a lot to set posts!).  most of these will be electric fenced areas with a few back bone fences as well.

and in the meantime ... when she isn't in her overnight paddock (which is done) .... she is multi tasking for us by mowing the fenced back yard .... it's a win win as she needs the grass and we need the lawn mowed!  all in a day!

hard at work mowing our back yard!