August 30th

Wednesday, August 30th, 2017

When dad’s home at lunchtime, that can only mean one thing: its hay time.

As a profession my dad is a small business owner, so normal weekday hours he’s at his shop. So when he’s home during the day, he means business.

My parents own a hobby farm, and that’s where my farm images are taken. Most of their land is rented out to neighboring farmers who plant commercially but the one thing we do harvest at the farm is hay for our horses, and our summers revolve around that. It’s your birthday? Hay’s ready, let’s bale. Out at the lake? Come home, hay’s ready.

Its a natural thing for farm kids (hobby or not!). When there’s work to be done, it doesn’t matter what you had planned, you cancel.

Usually I’m not a large part of the initial cutting of the hay, but today was different. We have a small fungus infestation in our red clover, so I had to be on hand to spot areas that we can’t use.

A couple of weeks ago, Junior came in from the pasture with what we dubbed “the slobbers.” He was literally creating a pool of excessive saliva on the stall floor. A quick google search pointed us to a “Black Patch” fungus that grows on red clover during certain weather patterns that can be toxic to horses, creating the excess saliva. It poses no health threats or concerns, it’s just unsightly.

We attempted to mow areas that we found to be infected, which helped for a couple of days at a time, and then he continued to find new infected patches. So, our last resort is to cut the entire pasture, bale it, and remove it.

IMG_0599The white patches indicate the beginning of the fungus growth.

However, here’s the stickler. We found it in our hayfields. Luckily, not all of our field contains red clover, but we had to come up with a cutting plan to avoid what we could. (Bandit was a big help – ha!)

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