we’ve had plans since we moved here of turning our first field into a pasture suitable for raising livestock on. like most folks in this area, we are on the acequia (ditch) irrgation system.
at long last, after a very great many planning conversations, some experiments with flooding it the way it was (too high for the water to get all the way across), we tackled the project this weekend. our friends Don & Leiah at Johnny’s Garden brought their tractor down, and plowed, disked and then levelled the field.
we began the day by moving a giant pile of barnyard compost. in the 4+ years we’ve been here, the barnyard compost “system” had gotten completely out of hand, and become a giant sprawling pile of straw and manure, too close to the chicken pens for comfort — providing a prime habitat for rats. so we started by moving it, and spreading it all out in the field prior to tilling.
just a little cleanup left to do. which is now something that can be easily managed with shovels and wheelbarrows.
and included tilling the edges, disking the whole thing, and then using the box to begin to level the field.
the extra dirt, pulled up along the north edge there, will become the first layer of what will be the road running along the north side of the property. we’re essentially extending the driveway so that we have access to the back.
meanwhile, all this removed our old walking path through the field. Alan and I made a new path, lining the edges with sticks to keep people on the path (rather than compacting soil everywhere with our feet).
all in all, a fantastic weekend’s work! i’m very excited to finish this job and flood the field. by the end of next month, we’ll have a green pasture out there!