In our part of mid-Maine summer began dry with some very hot days early on. But soon after a few weeks of that weather pattern, rain came and temperatures became fairly cool and comfortable for the remainder of the summer. There were a few hot days mixed in, as to be expected, but truly we could not have asked for better weather in regards to pasture growth and our own comfort. The tomatoes in the garden didn't quite appreciate the cooler days/nights (though I grow a variety suited to the north) and were rather lackluster. The pumpkins and squash didn't like the abundant rain fall but otherwise our home garden did well. We enjoyed lots of sweet corn, carrots and peas and have enough pumpkins and squash and are still enjoying a glut of jalapenos. We have carrots, beets and some herbs still growing in the high tunnel at the end of the summer/beginning of fall.
The honeybee colony did well and swarmed early this summer. We captured the swarm but alas they were unable to sustain themselves and died a few months later. The main colony has been vigirous and growing and we got an acceptable yield of honey for our personal use, about 1 gallon.
Sadly, our meat chickens succumbed to a fox just when they were big enough to begin free ranging. The clever and persistent fox burrowed beneath their shelter one night and one by one carried every one of them off. They werent big enough to make a fuss which would have allowed us to hear and stop the assault which we have been able to do in the past for our larger chickens. We've been raising at least one batch of meat chickens for our freezer every summer for the last 8 years and we've experienced occasional casualties to foxes, and night attacks but never our whole flock at once and never has a fox burrow beneath their enclosure.
We moved our southern pasture boundry fence this summer which is a sizeable project but we got it finished. It will mean the cattle cannot access an area that has now become permanent wetland, with the help of beavers that either come through or take up residence. It is futile to struggle against the industrious beaver we have decided.
The remaining 3 of 4 total calves (1st one was born in the early spring) were born healthy and strong. All the mothers did well giving birth and bonded immediately with thier babies. Even the first calf heifer. They all had, and still have, plenty of milk to give their calves. The calves have grown very well on all that good pasture this growing season has provided. Our slaughter steer finished beautifully, large and well-marbled on the abundant summer pasture.
Summer, as always, is a busy time of year. It never seems there is enough time to do all we wish to do and with our baby son we were even busier! But we had family and friends visit and even made some time to get to the coast.
We are sold out of quarters, halves and whole beef for fall of 2021 and winter of 2022. Our next availbility is for end of summer/early fall 2022 but make your reservation now as we are almost sold out. We have lean 90/10 ground available for sale currently.