Last week was a dry one, and we were able to cut and bale the first cutting of hay. We choose to hire someone with a large baler to make big round bales of the first cutting hay, which goes in the sheep barn. There is still a lot of work involved in haying this way, but it is machine work, and not back-breaking manual labor.
The crew spent the better part of two days preparing the hay storage area (which recently held lambing pens), hauling the hay in from the field and carefully positioning it in the storage area.
We place each bale (weighing over 1,000 pounds) on a wooden skid or pallet. Hay that comes in contact with concrete will mold and rot. The pallets allow air circulation underneath the bales.
Each bale is labeled with the field information. The hay has been chopped and netwrapped, making it easier for The Farmer to feed by hand come wintertime.
More first-cutting hay is being cut right now. The weather forecast is for scattered showers off and on all week, unlike last week's completely dry forecast. We will see if we can get this batch of hay in without it being rained on. Always a gamble.