Friday, 27 May 2022

Silage has begun, Summer visitors due

The menfolk have started this year's silage harvest at last. The weather has come right and so it's all out to get the grass cut, raked and brought in. The rather elegant piece of kit in the photograph is the rake which opens out its spidery arms and then spins at great rate to bring the mown grass into rows ready for the forage wagon to gather it up to be brough to farm where it will be put into a huge concrete clamp. It is work that despite the huge and expensive machinery of modern times still involves long hard hours and the Farmer & the Sons will be at it probably well into the night and that includes having Elder Son having to stop to do the evening milking. No matter what else is going on milking has to be done twice a day and if we can get enough man-power the silage can carry on uninterupted while one member of the team has to leave to get the cows in and milked. Fortunately we have enough drivers to enable this to happen fairly seamlessly.
It is a marvellous time of year, the men love it, working with all this amazing machinery that is prepared so carefully in the weeks leading up to the first mowing as breakdowns mean loss of time & money and so all that can be is done to ensure everything runs smoothly. I spend much time making sandwiches and ensuring there is a plentiful supply of fruitcake for the Farmers's packed lunches as the daily routine falls by the wayside for these few days. Some days I may have to take food out to the fields if they are particularly far away across the valley and so picnics in the field looking across the valley are a good break. The valley looks wonderful at this time of year with the patchwork of fields visible for miles in their varied shades of green interspersed with the darker greens of the hedges and small woodlands. The wood are lovely now with the fresh green of beech leaves comong out, the clouds may-blossom looking like meringues amid the golden green of oak leaves emerging. The first of our summer visitors arrive tomorrow in the holiday cottage and with any luck this gogeous weather will hold and they will experience west Wales at its very best. I must now go and do the finishing touches to the cottage, last minute vacuuming & dusting and tomorrow I will put flowers and a plate of home-made chocolate brownies on the table in readiness for their arrival.

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