The good and bad of summer | Living the Country Life

The good and bad of summer

July 20, 2016

Let's start with the bad part of summer.

The deadliest internal parasite for sheep is the blood-sucking stomach roundworm Haemonchus contortus, also known as the barber pole worm. It causes severe anemia and death. Wet grass and hot weather bring it on in our herd. Some ewes are are not affected, but those who get it stop eating, turn white, and then die. Two of our ewes died last week. We had to lock them in the barnyard. Allowing the pasture to rest helps get rid of the larvae. Sheep graze close to the ground and overgraze in the same areas. We need to use fencing to create multiple paddocks in our 22-acre pasture. See more about these deadly parasites here.

We have had an unusually wet summer. On July 19 we had 5 inches of rain. That is crazy. Good thing we are turning half of our corn farm into wetlands next year, because it's going that way on its own.

Now for the good parts of summer.

Nephews in our grove.

Relatives visiting from California enjoyed walking around the pasture. 

Grandpa Freese has all 13 grandchildren around him. They range in age from 7 to 37.

The Iowa state bird is the goldfinch. This one tapped on my windows all weekend.

Another view at another window.

My onions are drying on the south side of the shop. After two days, I put them on the porch for two weeks.

I love to sit in the shade of my backyard.

Bob got a practical gift for my birthday - at my request. I took the day vacation and had great plans to sit in the yard with a book, but that was the day it rained for 10 hours.

Rain makes grain! (I'm wearing my favorite t-shirt. "I'm blogging this.")


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