Before the ground turns soft from the rainy days as we go into our wet season, I thought I’d sink those Log posts in the ground for the future lean-to in the lower pasture area. Now I’ll wait for a nice Fall day to do some chainsaw-milling and attach some siding; then a roof!
It seems like all the llamas know that Fall is being ushered in. They are slowly shifting their diet towards more orchard grass and less pasture grazing. All the pastures will get a day here or there where the herd will visit, but for the most part the pastures need to recover and get some good growth in before it goes into its winter dormancy.
Still, we’ll let the animals have their run of the gravel service road. It helps to keep their nails trim and gives them a chance to stretch their legs. For these little brown guys, this will be their first winter here at the ranch!
Oh and speaking about that Orchard Grass hay, we had our local supplier stack up 4 tons of hay, that’s 80 bales! In the picture you can see how efficient these guys were. They stacked 3 bales to support this neat electronic bale elevator from the back of the delivery truck to the inside of the barn. He’s only halfway through the stacking; will reach seven bales high when he is done.
Fall also means I’m more apt to do some baking with a hot oven! These homemade cinnamon rolls barely had a chance before half of them were demolished. I made these while visiting my mom in California. They were such a success I might just have to make them for guests at the ranch….mmmmm…
The garden goes through a huge transformation as the summer veggies give way to their final harvests. We clear a number of beds and plant some garlic bulbs. Then load after load of magic llama-poo compost is added to the tops of the beds. I’m thinking I might do a cover crop too.
So far we’re on our second batch of brining dill pickles and I’ve already brought in three pumpkins. It is hard to believe all these started from seed this year!
The tomatoes that are already turning and have come off the vine, are set in flats with some apples to speed up their ripening. As I write this, they’ve all been turned into a boiling pot of tomato sauce for canning. This is our winter marinara! Yum!
Fall has a great effect on green veggies as long as we can protect them from the frost. That means cold frames come back into play. The celery has been small all summer, but with a bunch of compost added to them, and the rainy days tossed in, they’ve begin to really burst. I picked a small one and even this one is two feet tall. The fresh celery aroma is so crisp!
Jalapenos, which really performed well, and the last of the zucchinis, which had a poor showing this season, add to the end of season bounty. I’ll jar the jalapenos and we’ll use them in many future recipes and Mexican-style dishes.