We love our technology, but in some ways we are taking the old road.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Hand-crafted Hay Bales

We planted our orchard in an alfalfa field. The alfalfa between the trees remains. But you can't drive a tractor and baler between the trees. And we needed some bedding for our chickens, having nothing else without purchasing it.

So my husband borrowed a weed cutter from his brother and has been cutting it by hand. It's like swinging a golf club.

Then he and the kids have raked it up and hauled it in the wheelbarrow. We had a hay pile most of the time while we had many chickens. But now we don't need so much bedding with just a dozen chickens in the coop. So my husband wanted to make litte rectangular bales somehow to store the extra.

He invented a manual haybaler:

It's a hinged frame made from scraps we had lying around. He and the kids would pack lots of hay into it, and he'd hold the kids' hands while they jumped up and down to pack it. They thought it was fun. Then my husband would tie twine around the bales and dump them out.

So now we have a few haybales stacked for sometime later when we need some bedding.

We'll probably just mow the hay with the lawnmower for the rest of the season since we shouldn't need it.

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