Blogs | Living the Country Life


June 20, 2014 | Betsy's Backyard
I visited farms in northern Iowa this week and saw many flooded fields and swollen creeks. It's always either too much or too little rain. Southern Minnesota just set the record for June rainfall. More is falling. The creek above is actually a...see all
June 16, 2014 | Betsy's Backyard
Bob finally baled the first cutting of alfalfa (mixed with a lot of wild mustard) and the kids stacked it in the barn. First cutting is never the best hay, but you have to get it off the field for the prime second crop to grow. Now it can rain...see all
June 11, 2014 | Betsy's Backyard
Bob took a sick lamb to the vet clinic today and Charlie the clinic cat became the caregiver. What sweet animal bonding. Charlie makes a fine nurse. "It will be okay, little lambie," says Charlie. Let me hold your hoof and give you a kiss....see all
June 9, 2014 | Betsy's Backyard
The strawberry picking season is in full gear at my home farm in Maryland, Walnut Springs Farm, The weather has been beautiful and customers abundant. Dad is still recovering from a fall a few months ago, using a cane and tiring...see all
June 2, 2014 | Betsy's Backyard
1. Fresh mint from my garden, added to a cool lime drink. 2. Blooming irises. 3. Sitting in the yard with a stack of magazines or good book. 4. Watching one of my kids mow the lawn (Nowlan, this time). 5. Fresh asparagus from my garden. 6...see all
May 30, 2014 | Betsy's Backyard
I planted potatoes on Easter weekend and they are growing well. This week I hilled them and then covered them with straw. The red potatoes are already starting to bloom. I will leave them in the ground until late July when I will dig them all,...see all
May 27, 2014 | Betsy's Backyard
Every evening we call the sheep into the barnyard and lock the gate so coyotes don't kill them overnight. Most of the animals come running (we give them a bit of alfalfa). See how fast they run here: all
May 22, 2014 | Betsy's Backyard
I'm on the north shore of our 3-acre pond. It's lovely this year, with no signs of drought. A goose made a nest on the south side. I scared her off when I walked by. I'm afraid the babies will be eaten quickly by the fox that walks through our...see all
May 20, 2014 | Betsy's Backyard
We sent the sheep to pasture this week, but not before a rainbow touched down behind the barn. In preparation for the foray into grass we vaccinate and worm every animal. Caroline arrived home from college just in time to help. Literally, the...see all
May 14, 2014 | Betsy's Backyard
This invasive weed is wild mustard (sinapis arvensis), not leafy spurge. I brought a few samples to the office and research showed it to be wild mustard. Bob was right all along. It's not great news, however, as the weed has taken over both alfalfa...see all