An Unofficial Start to Summer

It’s been a wild couple of weeks around these parts. J and I have been finishing up spring cattle work, fencing, thinking about haying, entertaining friends and praying for rain. I blinked and the calendar changed over to June. It doesn’t feel like it should be June yet.

Our Memorial Day weekend was a great one. The Puffer family got here on Friday afternoon. We kicked off the weekend with a near toilet overflow and brisket on the big green egg.

Saturday J and I went to a Memorial Service for J’s Great Aunt. Puffer’s went hiking in the Slim Buttes. We all got home close to the same time and regrouped. We did a little target shooting and grilled burgers for supper.

We had a relaxing Sunday morning visiting and attended Church. After dinner we headed to the stock dam to go fishing. We had a couple short lived rain showers pass over before the sun came out and gave us a nice afternoon. We caught a couple of fish, but no keepers.

We bid our dear friends farewell after a big Monday morning breakfast. It’s always fun to catch up with friends, spoil a Mom of four and take it easy for the weekend.

We are dry here, very dry. J mowed the morning of Friday May 26th and our lawn turned brown. The early summer grasses are headed out and the hay is not growing.The stock dam water quality is questionable. Many producers are testing the water and finding some stock dams unusable.

J and I went to get the fire truck on Friday and a passed a few winter wheat fields. The wheat is 5-6 inches tall and shooting a head. I told J you know it’s dry when the cat tails in the ditch have brown leaves.

As part of our drought management plan we put up a temporary electric fence. We have a patch of grass that runs between the “Windmill Pasture” and a hay filed with access to a good dam. We are hoping to get a good week to ten days of grazing for the replacement heifers there.

This week a second temporary electric fence is going up on the east side of the same hay field. This will utilize a patch of grass that usually gets grazed in the fall and still have access to a clean dam.

Last fall J wanted to build several corners in our summer pasture and put in a few fence line wood posts. Last Wednesday was the day. J talked Roy into helping him! Roy is bigger and stronger than I am, both excellent qualities for building new corners.

While J and Roy were hard at work I went to the dentist. A few weeks ago I managed to pop off one of my crowns while flossing. Ironic, I know. My original appointment was for the end of June. When the dental office called to see if I could come in May 31st, I eagerly said yes.

Thursday J and I went back to the summer pasture to bank dirt around the water tanks. The extra footing helps make sure the calves can reach the fresh clean water. J and I also put in one more corner.

On Sunday the 28th the last cow calved! Friday J and I branded the last five babies and got them kicked out to summer grass. It’s a great feeling to be done calving, have all the cattle worked and turned out.

Saturday morning, June 3rd, we worked calves at Todd’s. That wrapped up calf branding for spring of 2017.

When we got home from Todd’s, J went to getting tractors ready for haying season. He is going to try to piece around in the hay fields and put up what we can.

While J was turning wrenches I power washed. I cleaned up the tractors and gave the 4-wheelers and ranger a good wash. The weather has taken a hot turn the last few days with temperatures in the 90’s. Power washing wasn’t a bad job to have.

How did you kick off the unofficial start to summer?

Are you experiencing hot, dry and drought conditions or getting moisture? 

I’ll be out and about this up coming week and will not have a blog post for June 12th. I’ll try to post on Facebook and will be back June 19th with a blog post.

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3 Responses to An Unofficial Start to Summer

  1. Rita says:

    Unlike your farm ours has been getting lot’s of rain and the grass/hay is above my waist and I’m 5′ 7″ . We need a couple weeks to get out hay harvested. We had a very early spring and rebuilt out cattle working pen.

  2. Kim's County Line says:

    I’m sorry you are dry. We were this winter, but we’ve had ample rain this spring. It’s rained on hay that we have down twice now. But it was great weather for filling wheat heads and for getting the row crops up and going.

    We took the 4-wheelers and checked pastures on Friday. It was a beautiful spring morning. A neighbor had a bull in the pasture, and we weren’t successful separating it out. He called a cowboy to come do the job on Saturday. I haven’t heard the result of that.

  3. Darcy says:

    I’m so sorry to hear that it is so dry. 🙁 Praying for summer rains….that’s one of the hardest parts about ranching; the lack of control of weather. On a positive note; your pictures are wonderful. 🙂

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