Spring is one of the busier seasons. The barns and lambing
pens are being cleaned out and scrubbed down in preparation
The grass is growing and the ewes are
thinking about lambing, which takes place in March to
April. By the middle of April most of the ewes have lambed and
are out at grass with their lambs. The lambing pens are
taken down and the barns cleared for shearing,
which takes place towards the end of spring, or earlier
if the weather is hot.
All the ewes and lambs are out at grass.
With shearing complete, the barns are being prepared for
all the summer hay. Good hay is vital as its the flock's winter feed and bales need to be kept totally dry. Old pallets are put on the barn's floor to
keep the bales off the damp and roofs are
checked for leaks. Hay making is dependent on the
weather, we keep an eye on the grass, and the weather
forecasters, before choosing our moment to move in with
The lambs are being weaned and most will be close to being
fully mature and fully
grown. Hopefully all the hay is in. The fields
are being tidied with a topper, (a large mower) and our neighbouring organic farmer may put his cows on them, to catch the autumn
flush of grass. Towards the end of
the season farmyard manure will be spread on the fields taken for hay. The manure helps return the
nutrients to the soil and increases the soil's fertility
and the organic matter content. The rams
are being prepared for tupping. Their feed is increased and they are checked over before
going in with the ewes in October.
Short days and long cold nights. The slowest season, but
often one requiring the most work. Hay bales need to be
carried, water troughs have their ice broken and pipes
defrosted. The hedges might be being laid, trees pruned
and ditches cleared out. The rams will remain with the Ewes until the end of January.