5 October 2010

Getting ready for winter

The man with the corn picker is coming to the village soon so we had to get a move on and get last year's corn out of the crib to fill it up again with freshly harvested cobs.

We kept some of the old cobs for the pigs and goats then grained the rest of it with our neighbour Guy's ancient machine and put the grain into all the containers we could find and stored it in the extension. It's the first year we've had to rush like this - normally we don't have any left at the start of autumn but last year's crop was exceptional.
The weather's been really dry here since the end of May, so this year's crop won't be so good.

This is the ancient corn picker which has been doing the rounds in this village (and several others) for quite a few years. When I see it I always think of Mad Max - a film set in a future where law and order has broken down at the end of the 'Oil Age' and baddies use weird and wonderful machines like this for just cruising around doing wicked things.
I suppose using a machine like this is wicked. I hate to think how much diesel this thing uses when it's chugging through the maize and what sort of damage it's doing to the earth below. We ought to be sowing and harvesting our grain by hand but a few years ago, thirty of us harvested a small field of corn for a neighbour and it took us several hours. This machine does the job for the whole village in just two days.

I'm sorry I haven't been blogging for a long time but we've been under a lot of pressure from forces beyond our control and I haven't felt like sharing what's been going on. I'll get back on that straight and narrow road soon.


Diane said...

Good to see you posting again, and happy harvesting!

Eco Gites of Lénault said...

I hope the forces beyond your control soon turn in your favour

Rosie x

La Ferme de Sourrou said...

Thanks Diane, and thanks Rosie - they will do one day, I'm sure of that.

Irene x

Steve said...

Nice to see you posting again, also it just might take your mind of other things.
I love the Mad Max nachine.


dND said...

Welcome back, like you I've been having time out due to life taking over :-) Re the mechanical harvester; I had great ideas about going organic/low impact with everything but being just one person I very quickly became overwhelmed. There just isn't the affordable man-power - and that takes us into the murky depths of imported food.

So I've been having a re-think and my aim now is to make the farm profitable enough so that I can remain here, otherwise it will just be broken up and incorporated into larger farms and to do what I can towards encouraging bio-diversity. A sort of very wavy middle line :-)

Hope things sort out for you
PS Are you in 24 or 46? I'm in 47

Teresa Sitz said...

Welcome back. I'm glad you have a little excess time and energy to post. I have missed you and your inspiring journey.

detroit dog said...

Always good to read your posts and see your photos. I, too, hope those "Forces" work to your favor one day.

Take care.


oh THERE you are darling! was getting concerned! Dang.... :( hope the pressure dissipates asap!~

I hear you about diesel and machinery... but sometimes we have to live in BOTH worlds.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful to hear that you are ok, if stressed out. I wish you all kinds of energie to keep on your road, straight or not and that you get some tail wind to make the going easier.

A Fan from Germany

Rowena said...

That does look like it's right out of a Mad Max movie! Wishing you some good mojo from Italy -- my blue corn went nowhere this year because it was just too cool of a summer where we live. Crossing fingers for next year.

The Cottage Garden Farmer said...

Just to let you know that I've found your posts inspiring and informative, especially on preserving produce.Your practical, illustrated experiences are so much more useful than text book info. Please do keep going. Kathy

maycatdecal said...

I am a student, I joined the blog to make friends with the lava away from the liver around the world. I want to learn many things about the country, people, life, culture ... of your country.

Nick said...

Glad to see you both back, hope those forces all come back under your control :)

PS: the feed url for our blog in your widget at the side is an very old one (have you been watching us that long :) now its http://feeds.milkwood.net/PlantingMilkwood

Hope your winter will be cosy and full of good food.

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