The farming and smallholding thread

Cavuman

Swinger
I raise a toast to Oops, Humble Tiller, and Ravers, all of whom know the intricacies of loving and being loved by the land, the animals, and, without question, their families. Such immense investments yield such unfathomable rewards, do they not? All things bright and beautiful....

I speak now to M'Lud Ravers and his kicked in the nuts tale, the thought of which causes both of my withering testicles to attempt an hasty retreat into my distended beer belly. (Such are the travails of a 71-year-old!)

A decade ago, I offered my amateur help to a North Carolina friend who was busy performing "elastration" on approximately 20 head of his fine-looking herd. Young, say 7-month-old, bulls were lured into the Trap (Crusher?), where, when fairly immobilized, a specialized pair of pliers was used to apply a very tight rubber band around the upper reaches of the testicles of the poor beasties, who, as one of the male persuasion might suspect, did not like the procedure whatsoever. They expressed their displeasure with various bovine moofing, zoofing, screeching, beeching, and kicking, and behaviors unsuitable to describe in mixed company

Know-it-all City Boy me suggested that a nice 8-foot-long piece of rebar, placed just-so in the back of the trap, might protect my friend from the wanton but powerful kicks of those hapless bullocks who were less-than-happy to have their testicular adornments constricted, only to fall off in a couple of weeks.

"Great idea!", exclaimed my friend as we brought the next victim, err, patient into the trap. As soon as the bovine buffoon was loaded, I slid the rebar behind his rear legs, secured by the steel frame of his imprisonment. My friend approached from behind, as quietly and as stealthily as he would a fine woman or a Greek football center. Just as the taught rubber band snapped into place around his innocent scrofulous scrotum, that muthafucka cow wannabe let loose a kick that missed me and my friend, but, by God, hit the steel bar square on, applying an incalculable mechanical advantage far greater than the greatest, finest turboencabulator might ever exert! The distal end of the steel extrusion hit me in the middle of my right tibia. Crack!

Rube Goldberg laughed from his Heav'nly perch! The World stood still. The herd ululated from afar!

I swear, the bullock-to-be smiled, laughed, and winked a big brown eye at me as I limped away.

By the time a got home, a grapefruit-sized lesion had arisen on my right leg. I was on crutches for two months. My leg hurts to this day, but, by God, I use it to predict weather with accuracy far better than the best college post-doc meteorologist.

And I still love a good steak, medium rare, with a baked potato smothered in butter, sour cream, salt, pepper, and bacon. Asparagus or a good salad on the side doesn't hurt.

I thank those of you who take the time and effort to bring all of us those amazing gustatory treats, starboard bollock pain notwithstanding....

Ed
 
A beautifully written description . . . you may have an extra chocolate biscuit with you morning coffee ;) .
 

philc

LE
A righteous and excellent post. As to my ethnicity I sport a spectacular 'Farmers Tan' at this time of year: face, forearms and neck brown/burnt/filthy, the rest like the front reflector on a pushbike.
In my part of Italy known as Bronzatura Contadina, Suntan of the Farmer.
 
A righteous and excellent post. As to my ethnicity I sport a spectacular 'Farmers Tan' at this time of year: face, forearms and neck brown/burnt/filthy, the rest like the front reflector on a pushbike.
Snap ...... wife did call me a minger yesterday ......only some of the tan subsequently washed off ....
 

Oops

War Hero
A righteous and excellent post. As to my ethnicity I sport a spectacular 'Farmers Tan' at this time of year: face, forearms and neck brown/burnt/filthy, the rest like the front reflector on a pushbike.
I'll ramble on a bit about the cereal progress up here now you've got chance for a breather to count your blessings.....
I've got three mates who managed to get a bit of W Barley in the ground last back end, various establishment techniques, made not a blind bit of difference..
Two @ 1.8- 1.9T/ac. Hybrid variety Bazooka
One @ sub 1t Standard variety Tower
Osr...
Much the same as you.. around 0.75t/ac. with an odd field doing the magic Ton
( When it was first grown here in 1978 it did 45cwt/ ac. Neighbour averaged 2t for the following decade)...
One or two are going to persevere one more time, however they're just chucking 5 kilos of plain seed on and seeing what's around come December as to spending any money on weed control etc.
Wheat...
Ha ha ha.. There are a couple of fields in the district....there's more weed showing than ears.
Sprayers have been in em this week splashing Roundup about...draw your own conclusions !

Sp.Barley...
Our Agronomist's email is telling everyone to shut their eyes and roundup them too....
Every seed that managed to germinate put one stunted shoot up, under immense drought pressure, which are now ripe, however once it rained in late June the plants tried their best and put up several more tillers..
These are vibrant lush green....
( There are a few decent stands about, but these are mainly on moss soils after veg.)
W/SpOats all sown in Spring, look like being the saviour, it's just how the monopoly breakfast cereal buyer reacts to the new economic realities.

20150819_101541~2.jpg

This is how we mostly harvest our cereals for home use,around 60 ac oats and barley, this time it won't pay the Contractor cost, but with barley in abundance and cheap it'll probably get left to feed the birdies anyway.

Strange times indeed.
 
I'll ramble on a bit about the cereal progress up here now you've got chance for a breather to count your blessings.....
I've got three mates who managed to get a bit of W Barley in the ground last back end, various establishment techniques, made not a blind bit of difference..
Two @ 1.8- 1.9T/ac. Hybrid variety Bazooka
One @ sub 1t Standard variety Tower
Osr...
Much the same as you.. around 0.75t/ac. with an odd field doing the magic Ton
( When it was first grown here in 1978 it did 45cwt/ ac. Neighbour averaged 2t for the following decade)...
One or two are going to persevere one more time, however they're just chucking 5 kilos of plain seed on and seeing what's around come December as to spending any money on weed control etc.
Wheat...
Ha ha ha.. There are a couple of fields in the district....there's more weed showing than ears.
Sprayers have been in em this week splashing Roundup about...draw your own conclusions !

Sp.Barley...
Our Agronomist's email is telling everyone to shut their eyes and roundup them too....
Every seed that managed to germinate put one stunted shoot up, under immense drought pressure, which are now ripe, however once it rained in late June the plants tried their best and put up several more tillers..
These are vibrant lush green....
( There are a few decent stands about, but these are mainly on moss soils after veg.)
W/SpOats all sown in Spring, look like being the saviour, it's just how the monopoly breakfast cereal buyer reacts to the new economic realities.

View attachment 495833
This is how we mostly harvest our cereals for home use,around 60 ac oats and barley, this time it won't pay the Contractor cost, but with barley in abundance and cheap it'll probably get left to feed the birdies anyway.

Strange times indeed.
It is a tough year for many, that much is certain. I know of one large estate in the south who have averaged 1.9t/acre for winter wheat and have had to bring all the milking cows in as there is no grass. Conversely my agent told me today of people along the M3 corridor getting 3 and 4 tons to the acre in spring barley. I will find out tomorrow how our SB has done.
Whatever the outcome, I recognise that we are extremely fortunate this year to 1. Have any winter corn to cut, and 2. We only driiled eveything once.
 
With reference to your kicking cow....

When I first moved up here and I was still very new to all this, I was helping the brother in law clip one of his prize shorthorn bulls before a show.

As you can imagine this beast was absolutely massive.

So he’s in the crush and we’re there painting his toenails (seriously), brushing his eyelashes and giving him the full Vidal Sassoon makeover.

For some reason he decides to just lash out with his back left leg.

The leg comes straight out the crush and with a whip like crack, strikes me perfectly on the starboard bollock.

Not a full force kick that would knock you over, more like when some ****** towel whips you in the gym changing room, except the leg of a 1000kg bull instead of a towel.

Did I mention it was in the bollox?

It hit just at the very extension of his leg and is up there with the greatest pain I’ve ever experienced.
Detour from this excellent thread, only veering slightly back to ARRSE: when I was doing my basic training fuck ups on drill were often described as ”like a kicking cow”. Without the blows to the nadgers.
 
A few buffer feeding here....neighbour has 40 or so followers / young stock on a couple of fields next door to home .......one has got a good sledging slope in it.....now with a trailer of round hay bales parked at the top and occasionally one or two are rolled off the trailer , de- netted and rolled down the hill .....the youngsters don't leave a lot so obviously need it.
Watched a Class combining a field of wheat today with a 24ft header...... thought he was chopping from a distance as the row behind was so small.......bloody glad I'm not round baling behind that.... even worse big square baling when you could do 14kph if only he hadn't muddled it in so the ground is full of ruts..... yield was not good but sample looked bright and bold with no shrivelled grains....
Certainly in the south a very strange year weather wise .....not seen the streams dry up like this since 76 when as boys we caught trout with our hands in the puddles left on stream bends
 
Detour from this excellent thread, only veering slightly back to ARRSE: when I was doing my basic training **** ups on drill were often described as ”like a kicking cow”. Without the blows to the nadgers.
If you have ever kicked a cow in frustration you would appreciate how your DS felt .......utter waste of time and probably a broken toe as a result ..... Cows also fully understand the slow increase in pain they inflict when they stand on one of your welly clad feet and with a dreadful inevitability slowly apply all their weight to that one foot ;-)
 
If you have ever kicked a cow in frustration you would appreciate how your DS felt .......utter waste of time and probably a broken toe as a result ..... Cows also fully understand the slow increase in pain they inflict when they stand on one of your welly clad feet and with a dreadful inevitability slowly apply all their weight to that one foot ;-)
A cow kicking, not kicking a cow. I would never kick a cow. A cow once kicked my dog. Luckily he was a collie and apart from an afternoon of being dazed, he got over it. No sense, no feeling.
 

sand_rat

Old-Salt
Im a man who used to do mobile phone masts so have met more than my fair share of people from farming stock, one lad up on Hadrians wall had a cow fall on him, in a right state he was, essentially disabled had to get around in one of them utility vehicles farmers use but a bit like a engine driven mobility scooter, had a tommy bolt on the door to secure it, how the hell he made a living was beyond me. Think the B&B side kept them afloat, I even got the rent for the mast up to beyond parameters to help out, obviously before the 'new code' came in.
 

Oops

War Hero
If you have ever kicked a cow in frustration you would appreciate how your DS felt .......utter waste of time and probably a broken toe as a result ..... Cows also fully understand the slow increase in pain they inflict when they stand on one of your welly clad feet and with a dreadful inevitability slowly apply all their weight to that one foot ;-)
Ahh, I'm not stupid....
I got wise to that one....

Steel toecap boots instead of wellies ( for the six days when the shit dries into dust in this neck of the Woods per year)
Not tight laced up ones you Mil. lot live in you understand, no the ones you can slip off really quickly under the table when the Missus starts moaning about "What's that bloody dog been rolling in?" and the dog's still three fields away...
Anyway, a mate turns up to run a couple of bullocks through our handling system to weigh/worm/clip....
"No worries,are they wild, do I need a stick?"
"Nah, quiet as mice, mate" ....

I knew I was in trouble when his rickety wooden gate exploded as I dropped the ramp ....
I met Billy flush on his nose with a perfect toe ender a là Wilkinson just before he was about to smear me up the wall of the loading bay...
The adrenaline slowly subsided giving way to a throbbing in my boot allied to the realisation my toes we're sticking together in my now slippy sock...
It's amazing what damage you can sustain approximately one inch worth of rapidly accelerating big toe suddenly comes into contact with a suddenly immobile steel toecap....
I repeated the trick several years later with t'other foot and someone else's cow.
( ref. Stick ban in abbattoirs).
Hmm, forget the ' not stupid' bit...

At least the kids say they'll easily identify my body if any distinguishing features are requested!


Eta.

P*ssing down here as usual, cows headed in undercover at one spell
Cool bordering on chilly at dusk.
 
Ahh, I'm not stupid....
I got wise to that one....

Steel toecap boots instead of wellies ( for the six days when the shit dries into dust in this neck of the Woods per year)
Not tight laced up ones you Mil. lot live in you understand, no the ones you can slip off really quickly under the table when the Missus starts moaning about "What's that bloody dog been rolling in?" and the dog's still three fields away...
Anyway, a mate turns up to run a couple of bullocks through our handling system to weigh/worm/clip....
"No worries,are they wild, do I need a stick?"
"Nah, quiet as mice, mate" ....

I knew I was in trouble when his rickety wooden gate exploded as I dropped the ramp ....
I met Billy flush on his nose with a perfect toe ender a là Wilkinson just before he was about to smear me up the wall of the loading bay...
The adrenaline slowly subsided giving way to a throbbing in my boot allied to the realisation my toes we're sticking together in my now slippy sock...
It's amazing what damage you can sustain approximately one inch worth of rapidly accelerating big toe suddenly comes into contact with a suddenly immobile steel toecap....
I repeated the trick several years later with t'other foot and someone else's cow.
( ref. Stick ban in abbattoirs).
Hmm, forget the ' not stupid' bit...

At least the kids say they'll easily identify my body if any distinguishing features are requested!


Eta.

P*ssing down here as usual, cows headed in undercover at one spell
Cool bordering on chilly at dusk.
I think a book is in order .....you could be the next Herriot ........ ;-)

For those that fancy a little light reading in a country style ...
Milk my ewes and weep by Joyce Fussy and "Binder twine and Rabbit stew by Joan Kent are worth a read.

Just had to come home and have a shower due to a mix of diesel and hydraulic oil liberally coating me after changing 4 hydraulic pipes and the suction and return fuel lines from the tank on a customers JCB (with a full fuel tank of course )..... this was achieved in full sun with the temp about 33 degrees in the shade.....any spanners left for a few minutes in the sun are literally too hot to hold....... another customer has just informed me he has a problem..... seems he just drove past the grain store in his combine.......

With the unloading auger out !!!!!!!
 

Oops

War Hero
I think a book is in order .....you could be the next Herriot ........ ;-)

For those that fancy a little light reading in a country style ...
Milk my ewes and weep by Joyce Fussy and "Binder twine and Rabbit stew by Joan Kent are worth a read.

Just had to come home and have a shower due to a mix of diesel and hydraulic oil liberally coating me after changing 4 hydraulic pipes and the suction and return fuel lines from the tank on a customers JCB (with a full fuel tank of course )..... this was achieved in full sun with the temp about 33 degrees in the shade.....any spanners left for a few minutes in the sun are literally too hot to hold....... another customer has just informed me he has a problem..... seems he just drove past the grain store in his combine.......

With the unloading auger out !!!!!!!
Ha ha ha ha.....

Tell em a bloke you know in Internetland is just having to slop out the feed passage cos the 30 mm of rain we had at 2am this morning blew the downspouts off .....
( And he backed over the New Pup with the skidsteer!)

Then slip em the link to Natural England's
Mid Tier Environmental Schemes Webpage, and tell em they could get £200/ac. for growing low input cereals to feed the birdies, so could sell.the £80k telehandler, the £300k combine........ and let the Yanks and Canucks ship our corn in at World COP....

Meanwhile, you could start trawling the saleyards of the Country outbidding the Polaks by a tenner and start restoring old IH's to sell to the plethora of Goodlifers who "Just need a tractor and trailer for Willowblossoms Shetland ponysh*te to be emptied once a week by 'The Nice Man' with the oily overalls and the 'quaint' accent..... who's soooo reasonable at only £30 an hour" (cash), "d'you think he'd mind cutting the grass too?"
( Which you promptly sell back for said pony to munch through in winter)....

I know two lads in Gloucestershire doing this exact thing , and making a fortune!

Meanwhile, you're in for a Sh*ttonne of grief ...that thin film of hyd oil/diesel/ sweat and chaff doest half take some gettin off the chrome and glass ( I'm regularly informed)
 
Ha ha ha ha.....

Tell em a bloke you know in Internetland is just having to slop out the feed passage cos the 30 mm of rain we had at 2am this morning blew the downspouts off .....
( And he backed over the New Pup with the skidsteer!)

Then slip em the link to Natural England's
Mid Tier Environmental Schemes Webpage, and tell em they could get £200/ac. for growing low input cereals to feed the birdies, so could sell.the £80k telehandler, the £300k combine........ and let the Yanks and Canucks ship our corn in at World COP....

Meanwhile, you could start trawling the saleyards of the Country outbidding the Polaks by a tenner and start restoring old IH's to sell to the plethora of Goodlifers who "Just need a tractor and trailer for Willowblossoms Shetland ponysh*te to be emptied once a week by 'The Nice Man' with the oily overalls and the 'quaint' accent..... who's soooo reasonable at only £30 an hour" (cash), "d'you think he'd mind cutting the grass too?"
( Which you promptly sell back for said pony to munch through in winter)....

I know two lads in Gloucestershire doing this exact thing , and making a fortune!

Meanwhile, you're in for a Sh*ttonne of grief ...that thin film of hyd oil/diesel/ sweat and chaff doest half take some gettin off the chrome and glass ( I'm regularly informed)
How is said pup ....seems like a tragedy in amongst a funny post !
 

Oops

War Hero
It yowled like a Scouser who's Giro hasn't been paid on time, then shot into a building footing full of stagnant sh*tty water looking very sorry for itself once I'd drawn up off it...
It's come out on three legs, but by the time it made the bales in the Dutch barn it's putting weight down on all four, but very gingerly...
I can't get near it yet,(it's blaming me!)but I'll get .3ml of metacam in it and see what develops, I've also gotta convince it the hosepipe isn't a gun barrel.

Daughters' have flown to Belfast for a couple of days, so I've been in charge for four hours......

"Fit for nowt, Gormless, Spaz."......

Apparently that's me they're referring to, not the vehicularly naïve canine !
 

Londo

LE
Questions for the farmers out there .
The field behind my place about the size of Belgium has been planted with spuds this season .
A couple or three weeks ago all the haulms were taken up , I was out for the day and missed them doing it so thought the spuds had been harvested .
Then about four days ago they were watering the field and then yesterday and today they were lifting the spuds .
So two questions .... Can the haulms be used for anything or just landfill ?
and the second .... Why water the field a few days prior to harvesting ?
 

Ravers

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Another case of fly strike.

Managed to catch this one in time I hope.

Poor little fella.

CB53A807-933A-4C8D-800B-7F7F91C3C7EA.jpeg
736A1991-1189-48C1-88D7-FC2B81B4DC01.jpeg
C4175709-8CDD-40AD-9B1D-9171E163D8AD.jpeg
 

Ravers

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Everything else is fine though.

Nice little sunset ride out on the quad to check on the rest of the stock.

E039AAB4-EB9C-4232-A6A8-ECBCEDA7A2A5.jpeg
1E795287-3795-4277-B93E-0A9898C7F85D.jpeg
 

Oops

War Hero
@Londo
Haulm poisonous ( same family as deadly nightshade)

Topped to 'shock spuds ' into 'skin set'.... Toughen em up a bit for the rigours of harvest...

Irrigation.....soften the soil up a bit for the harvester to deal with easier, thus protecting delicate soil/skin interface......

( Its not an issue round here, I've heard one report of a tractor getting stuck this morning..... Reports of between 18mm and 30 mm recorded within a mile of each other last night ( we'd 28 ) and rumours of 80mm recorded on the Fylde)
 

Latest Threads

Top