So, we have all been enjoying the Fall weather. Its cool and breezy. But now the days are getting really short and it is getting much colder out.
Due to the short, cold days most of the big outside tasks will be put on hold until Spring gets here. However, there are still some things you can do around the farm. In addition to the daily chores, of course.
4 Winter Farm Activities we will be doing this year:
1) Get ready for Goat Kiddings – if like us, you bred your goats in the Sept – Oct range, then your does may be due in Feb – Mar. Since it is our first year for kiddings, we will be spending some research and education time learning all the ins and outs to be the best prepared that we can be. We will also be getting all of our kidding supplies ready. Additionally, we will be updating our website with the expected due dates to open up waiting lists for the kids.
2) Start Garden Planning – OK, you may think at first that it is a little early to plan your garden. But trust me, it isn’t! Depending on your planting zone, some crops should be started inside as early as February. We do square foot gardening and have a mapped out plan in Excel. So, each year we make a list of what we want to grow, plan how much we will grow, and map out what boxes each thing will go in. If you are growing new things, you can spend the time to research the best ways to grow them. And, of course, order your seeds.
3) Replenish Your Layer Flock – again, this may seem like it is too early to think about. However, if your layer flock is getting older and you want hens ready to lay in Spring/Summer, you will need to start thinking about getting chicks in Jan or Feb. We also offer growouts to our customers each year, so we will be ordering a batch of pullets in January. That way they can start growing out for those who don’t want to deal with brooding their own chicks.
4) Spring Expansion – each Winter (maybe due to lack of outside time) we always come up with one big, fun, new exciting project for the next year. This year we did two — chicken breeding pens and goats. So, use the time to sit and think about what you might like to expand into next. Maybe it will be a new animal. Maybe more of something you already have, a new gardening style, an orchard the list could be endless. If you are farming for profit (and not just self-sufficiency), go through your books and see what was most profitable (maybe you should add to that venture), least profitable (is it still worth doing?) and what months you would like to add income to (what activities can fill in this gap?).