We normally harvest much of our hay and silage in late spring and early summer, but this year has been different, in almost every way. The extremely hot and dry weather that began as early as March meant that first cuttings were skimpy, and second cuttings were non-existent. Putting up hay now feels like it's the first hay of the season. A couple of nice rains this month have given the plants just the boost they were waiting for; it seemed as if you could see the grass, alfalfa, lespedeza, orchard grass and crab -- yes, crab -- grass grow. (University extension studies show that crab grass makes a very nutritious feed.)
I ate mine as I watched him for a while.Every little bit he would stop and let the baler deliver one of these babies.
He was working in the field through which I normally take my walk.
I've been noting the progress of other crops along my route. The one I've been keeping a close eye upon is the crop of buckeyes.
I love these small trees! They bloom beautifully in spring, and their fruit is so interesting. This is how they look when they begin to ripen,
and this is how they look when the shell splits and the seeds emerge.
No wonder they are named as they are -- see the eye?
Despite the difficult summer, there appears to be an abundant crop of most everything, including walnuts,
and some straggler wild plums.
I have never ceased to wonder at the vision of our ancestors who saw the potential in the Ozarks land, for it was surely rugged and rough, covered with deep woods, with nary a prairie to be seen down here.
But with lots of hard work and sweat equity, farms have been carved into the hollows and on the ridge tops. While it may not be the easiest place in the world to farm, surely it is one of the most beautiful.
growing among the ditch weeds. If it were dug up and trained upon a fancy trellis in the garden of a society horticulturalist, it would be oohed and ahhed over, its lovely blue noted as remarkable. I note it each time I walk -- another gift.
Hope your Wednesday has been a remarkable fall day.