Monday, October 31, 2011


The mountain of corn stalk bales continues to grow on our hoop site as we haul home and stack some three hundred bales. Due to difficult weather last year we found ourselves short on bedding which is a truly miserable thing for our livestock and us. So maybe we went a little overboard in the other direction this year. I don't think the animals will complain. Lots of bedding is the best way to cope with our old and not so well designed farm buildings.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

General Electric

Jeffrey Immelt, head of General Electric and Obama's new appointment as jobs development know it all was recently heard whining to Lesley Stahl about Americans not cheering on corporations like GE. They should be on our side, he said, like Germans side with their corporations and Japanese prize theirs.

These are, of course, not apples to apples comparisons. German corporations are not building profit margins by outsourcing German jobs. They cannot, as they have significant representation of German labor and the German public on their boards, groups which would not put up with that kind of behavior. German corporations are really nothing at all like American ones. Does Immelt want to change GE over into something like the German design? Because if he did, GE would have all the support it could use from the American people. But until he does, he and the others can expect unrest in the streets, including Wall Street.


Friday, October 7, 2011


This fall we are in the midst of changing our sow housing to make it easier to do the breeding and especially feeding of the sow herd. The end result will be that we will be able to feed each sow the amount of feed she needs individually each day, while observing her health and condition. And best of all, pasture access will be improved so that each of our three sow groups can have regular daily access to the pastures with the cattle throughout the gestation period. In the winter, when grasses aren't available, high quality hay will be available to the sows. It is all part of our effort to improve the condition of the pastures as well as the farm as a whole through increasing our emphasis on perennial plants such as pastures and hay. These crop do not have to be seeded every year and are very protective of the soil during periods of heavy rainfall or hot sun. We are excited about this change and hope to complete work before cold and snow.

Meanwhile also there is hay to be made, corn to harvest and corn stalks to bale for hog house bedding material. As always, October and November are a last hard push before we get to rest a little in winter. And it would be wrong to ignore the beauty that surrounds our efforts as the trees turn brown and gold and the grass fades to a deep quiet green against the tan of the ripening crops. Take care. Keep your eyes and hearts open!