Sunday, December 30, 2012

Our new mobile home

[Please keep in mind. We pick a topic and then write independently so we don't know what the other is writing.]

Karen:  She's a beauty, isn't she?  I mean the trailer, not the truck.  I'm sure that's what you thought I was talking about.  They're very similar, rust and all. 

Oh the possibilities this stock trailer offers.  We don't have a tractor (yet) or a log splitter or mulcher or......., but this trailer is something a "farmer" would have, isn't it?  Last year we had to borrow an inadequate horse trailer to take our hog to the butcher and breeder, AND we had to rely on a friend to arrange this loaner.  

Not only will we haul pigs, we'll haul donkeys to trails and use it as a moveable shelter for the goats so we can rotate pastures or use it as a portable milking room sometime.  The possibilities are endless. 

I'm super excited about this purchase (actually, it's a Christmas gift to me from James).  Rust and all, it's ours.  Maybe we should paint it and put our farm logo on it.  Oh, yeah, we don't have a farm logo.  Anyone have any ideas? 

JamesAll farmers have tractors, except for those who don’t. We don’t. Well, maybe we aren’t real farmers. I’m not going to argue that one, but I aspire to the title. A fine farmer is a Renaissance person, knowledgeable about meteorology, mechanical engineering, automotive mechanics, geology, chemistry, biology, botany, anatomy, veterinary medicine – the list is endless. Some day I’d like to feel comfortable posting this sign: “Elk Cliff Farm/Karen and James Pannabecker, Farmers.”

In the meantime, we and our homestead will gradually grow. Today we added a livestock trailer, bought from friends who, like us, are “moving up.” Why do we need a trailer?

“Need” is a loaded word. “Want” might be more accurate, at least until we hang that sign.

We wanted the trailer for two main reasons. First, we’d like a dependable vehicle of our own. A year ago we borrowed a trailer to deliver Velma the pig to an abattoir. Velma was too much for that trailer until we stopped en route to retrofit it. See

Second, we’d like to implement the rotational grazing promoted by the likes of Joel Salatin (Polyface Farms). To do this, we need a movable animal shelter. Our new trailer will protect our goats from wind, wet and sun as we rotate them through our 25-acre pasture.

Someday maybe we’ll add a tractor. Or not – perhaps our mammoth donkeys will train us to pull a plow instead.

1 comment:

  1. So much to enjoy... following the two of you. Take a ride over to Short Hill and see what's happening on the old Tilson farm. I think it's called Broadview Ranch... a most natural place and they have a really neat mobile chicken unit.

    Happy New Year!