Monday, April 30, 2012

Madcap Monday: Horse power

A growing number of ecologically-minded small farms are turning to draft animals (horses, donkeys and/or mules) to work the land instead of using tractors and other heavy machinery. We're not one of them. Our old (28ish) thoroughbred horse is retired and largely functions as barnyard eye-candy. And the donkeys? Well, they're supposed to be on predator watch, but we all know how good a job they're doing there... or not.

However, the grassy paths in the kitchen garden were looking a bit unruly last week but instead of cutting with the mower, I enlisted the help of my four-legged friends.

While they mucked up the beds a bit, they did a great job razing the grass to more manageable levels. And the natural fertilizer* they left behind can't be beat! Now if I could only get them to help me plant peas...

* Yes, I know you have to age manure before you use it in vegetable beds.


Anonymous said...

I love the tone of this post: Very tongue in cheek. I empathize with your anticipation of criticism before it is given and your wish that your critters could help you garden. I feel much the same about my brush-clearing goats. They earn their keep, but I can't help but wish they could be farm hands!

Erin said...

You need to find a job for those donkeys... I LOVE donkeys and when I talk about them my husband just rolls his eyes! Let us know when they get a job so I can tell hubby all the great things they can do LOL!!!! :)

Mama Pea said...

That's what we need . . . a couple of animal lawn mowers. We had to cut our lawn yesterday for the first time this season but it was also the earliest it's ever needed cutting in our 16 years on this property. Wonder how our granddogs would get along with a couple of grass-munching lambs? said...

@ Laura -- thanks! I love the tone of your comment!! Madcap Mondays often involve some kind of gentle jab at some of the nonsense that goes on around here!

@ Erin -- I would LOVE to see Cinder hooked up to a cart! I think she'd actually do a pretty good job. She may have an attitude when it comes to Gall's grain, but otherwise she's a good girl. Leeroy on the otherhand... I'd love to try to put a pack on him, but I'm sure then he'd be the one rolling the eyes (and kicking his heels!)

@Mama Pea -- this reminds me of a conversation that I had with a mum at hockey a few months ago -- she said her dad needed a new lawn mower, so he was looking at a few highland cattle! She thought that was a bit over the top, but then when her mower went belly up, she started considering a goat or two! Gotta love country/rural thinking! P.S. I think the granddogs would LOVE a few lambs!

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