This week holds many firsts for Fox Hollow Farm

Dante Valvo, our summer intern, started today and hit the ground running. The farrier came to take Molly and Polly’s shoes off and trim their feet (they were not happy with the process). Today we also took the first batch of chickens to Pleasant Valley Poultry Processing. Taking birds to this business instead of butchering them ourselves will give us more options for when and where to sell them and hopefully save time.

Last, but definitely not least, today Molly and Polly pulled something other than a wagon for the first time. We got out our new Pioneer Homesteader with the cultivator attachment and practiced in preparation for weeding the potatoes. The process required learning and patience from everybody but by the end we were starting to get the hang of it. By the end of the summer we hope to be harvesting potatoes with the horses!

Hatchling

This little hatchling has just broken through its shell and is calling for attention.
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Lambing has begun - Busy, busy!

There is not much time to write news now because lambing has begun! We had our first official lambs early along with another surprise…A new baby calf! The first of our dairy cows has given birth to healthy bull calf. This means milking will start as lambing starts. Yeah. (It will be nice to have fresh cream again though). You can see photos of the calf on our facebook page.

Grazing in winter

The sheep are able to graze during the winter and heavy snow.
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They just move the snow off the grass and feed. It's another aspect of the natural and sustainable approach we take.

Draft horses arrive

The Haflinger draft horses, Andy and Ray, have made their arrival at Fox Hollow Farm and Chelsea and I have been working them every chance we get! Both horses are 12 years old (late 50s for a horse) and benefit from the frequent exercise, especially Andy who has some joint pain. Today we hitched up the cart and went driving through the woods on some of the farm’s most remote and exciting logging roads. Andy and Ray handle the rough terrain beautifully and we hope to start harvesting more firewood with their help next week. At the Winter Farm Pickup day in February we hope to also give wagon rides around the farm with Andy and Ray’s help. The two young fillies we are also horse sitting, Clementine and Cordelia, will also be on display.

Happy New Year

We have been “making merry” over the holidays. We did, however, also make time to steer the farm through the melting snow and torrential rains. The pastures and the animals weathered the storm nicely, and we are ready to face whatever else winter has in store for us.

In the last 2 weeks, we also added two more Jersey cows to our home dairy. (We now have four cows.) Just in time! We’ve been buying butter from a local dairy for the last two months. Now we will have our own butter again.

This Saturday marks the first Mount Vernon area delivery for 2014! Happy New Year from all of us at Fox Hollow Farm!

Happy Holidays

Here at Fox Hollow Farm, we ALL enjoy the holidays!
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The hens are tucked into their henhouse with the spirit of the season.

Skidding logs with draft horses

We have arranged for an opportunity to house two Haflinger draft horses, Andy and Ray,
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here at Fox Hollow Farm over the winter this year. We have also been learning to drive draft horses with the help of some local experts. We hope to use draft horses in the future but want to try it out first. Here we are skidding logs out of the woods to cut into firewood nearer the house.

Moving pigs

About this time of year, as the pigs
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are about ready for market, we move them to the hoophouses where they can enjoy more warmth and protection. They enjoy their plush hay-strewn habitat and cohabitate happily with the hens.