New meat grinder

22 Apr

I received my meat grinder last Friday. After looking at several different models I chose LEM #8 .35hp.

I ground a couple of briskets with it Sunday evening and I was very impressed. I think this grinder is going to work out very well this fall when I harvest a couple of hogs.


My crowder peas are coming up

15 Apr

As I was roaming around outside today in our lovely west Texas spring wind, I noticed a few of my Mississippi purple crowder peas had popped up.
More of my io chief corn had came up. I’m hoping this drought resistant corn does well.


I need to get my large patch of black-eyed peas planted and my field corn also.
Hercules is doing well and is very talkative, anytime I walk close to his pen he starts grunting and meets me at the gate to be rubbed. I’m excited about the piglets he’s going to produce, he’s a good looking hog in my opinion.



General homestead update

12 Apr

Well it’s been awhile since I’ve update on B-K Homestead, so here’s what’s been happening.
I’ve recently added a new hog, Hercules a 5 month old Hampshire boar.

He should be a good addition to my breeding later this summer.
I’m also going to pickup a Chester white gilt this weekend that’s weaned and ready to go.
I’ve planted most of my garden, I still have some to go though. Its about a 50×50 with two rows of potatoes, one row of onions, 4 rows of sweet corn, five rows of crowder peas, four rows of green beans, 1/2 row of bell peppers with zucchini in the other 1/2, about 15ft of speckled butter beans, 5ft of cukes, and 9 tomato plants if last nights freeze didn’t kill them. I also decided to plow up my larger field since it had been grazed to bare dirt by the previous owner. I’ve planted about 200 ft of field pumpkins and another 200 ft of big max pumpkins, 100 ft of black diamond water melons, 100ft of desert yellow water melons, 100 ft of Israel melons. I’m going to plant 200 ft of black-eyed peas and the rest of it will be disced and sown with Bermuda grass and I’ll also come back and plant field corn in with the grass just to let dry on the stalk and use as feed. As soon as the weather gets a-little warmer here I’ll plant my okra. Pray for rain!
I lucked out and was able to get 5 round bales of coastal hay for free from the company I work for. That saved me about $500. Hopefully I’ll be able to get some more.
The weather here has been kinda nuts. In the 90’s one day and 50’s the next with below freezing temps that night. I’m hoping that was our last freeze for the year.

Monsanto protection act

28 Mar

Furor Growing Against Obama Over ‘Monsanto Protection Act’
Anger is growing against President Barack Obama the day after he signed into law a spending bill that included a provision opponents have dubbed the “Monsanto Protection Act.”

That bill, the HR 933 continuing resolution , was mainly aimed at averting a government shutdown and ensuring that the federal government would continue to be able to pay its bills for the next six months.

But food and public safety advocates and independent farmers are furious that Obama signed it despite its inclusion of language that they consider to be a gift to Monsanto Company (NYSE:MON) and other firms that produce genetically modified organisms (GMOs) or genetically engineered (GE) seeds and crops.

And protesters have spent the past couple of days demonstrating in front of the White House , first calling on Obama to veto the bill, and now criticizing him for his failure to do so.

The protests come on the heels of a massive petition campaign organized by the advocacy group Food Democracy Now , which gathered the signatures of more than 200,000 people who wanted Obama to veto HR 933 in order to stop Section 735 — the so-called “Monsanto Protection Act” — from being codified into law.

But Obama ignored it, instead choosing to sign a bill that effectively bars federal courts from being able to halt the sale or planting of GMO or GE crops and seeds, no matter what health consequences from the consumption of these products may come to light in the future.

“This provision is simply an industry ploy to continue to sell genetically engineered seeds even when a court of law has found they were approved by USDA illegally,” the petition stated. “It is unnecessary and an unprecedented attack on U.S. judicial review. Congress should not be meddling with the judicial review process based solely on the special interest of a handful of companies.”

Many food safety advocates maintain that there have not been enough studies into the potential health risks of GMO and GE seeds and crops, and the judicial power to stop companies from selling or planting them was one key recourse they were relying on to stop them from being sold if health risks come to light.

But the “Monsanto Protection Act” — referred to as the “Farmer Assurance Provision” by its supporters — removes that course of action, and those who are angry at Obama for signing the bill are also incensed with Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D- Md., who is accused of failing to give the amendment that inserted the language a proper hearing.

“In this hidden backroom deal, Sen. Mikulski turned her back on consumer, environmental and farmer protection in favor of corporate welfare for biotech companies such as Monsanto,” Andrew Kimbrell, executive director of the Center for Food Safety , said in a statement . “This abuse of power is not the kind of leadership the public has come to expect from Sen. Mikulski or the Democrat Majority in the Senate.”

A number of the provision’s vocal opponents allege that it was quietly inserted while the bill was still in the Senate Appropriations Committee, which Mikulski chairs, and that her committee did not hold any hearings on its language. They say many Democratic members who voted for the bill were unaware.

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Poor ducks

26 Mar

Well I had to move our 4 ducks out of the chicken coop and in the pen with my bottle baby goats. The ducks started getting their wing feathers and with the Pekings white feathers all the pullets started pecking at them. It looks like they are going to heal up fine. I’m thinking of moving them into the back yard for now so I can move the bottle babies over to the goat pen an move my boer buck over to that pen. He’s getting a little to mature for my doeling. And she needs some more time to mature.

We’ve finally moved

25 Mar

It’s been awhile since I’ve updated, we’ve been very busy moving and trying to get everything situated.
I went and picked up our weaner pigs a couple back on the 13th. We have 4 gilts, one of which my brother in law and nephew are going to split. Out of the 4 I’m going to choose one to keep and AI this fall for a spring litter. I’ll prob keep one or two out of that litter and sell the rest.

I also got my old tractor running to start on my garden area for this year. This has been a fiasco. My dad and I bought a ford n series tractor about 14 years ago that he used to shred around his antique store. We’ve slowly accumulated various implements over the years. About five years ago we had the engine overhauled, but the old tractor has just been sitting for the last two or three years. So I go and get it jumped off and let it run for about 15 min. One of the front tires won’t hold air so I decide to pull it up to a clear spot to pull the tire and take it for repair instead of pulling it in the grass burrs. Pretty uneventful until I show up a couple days later with the new tire, battery and my 17 year old daughter to load the tractor and implements on a trailer to move to our new place. We get there and I notice I’ve left the gas valve open. So we get the new tire and battery put on and crank it over. Just as I thought its flooded. So I tell my daughter to back my truck to the front of the tractor, and chained the two up. I tell her she’s going to pull me around the property slowly. All’s going well and after a couple of laps it’s trying to catch. That’s when a splice in the chain snaps. So I rehook the chain and have her slowly ease forward to take the slack out. When it’s starting to get where I want it, I yell whoa. At this point let me remind you of a quick safety note. Turn the switch to the off position. I failed to do this. So I yell whoa, she hears go. She takes off, the tractor roars to life, she slams on the brakes and the tractor slams into the back of my truck which kills the tractor, and shoves the radiator in to the fan. So antifreeze is running out, radiator is shot. So we get out the come alongs and wench it up on the trailer and move it to our new house. I find a new radiator online for $200 delivered. So yesterday my daughter and I tackle taking it apart to replace it and try to straighten out as much of it as we can. By that evening we have it running. And I’m listing the garden area, until it starts dying. From the way the fuel filter looks I think it’s starving for fuel. I’m going to grab some new filters and some sea foam and see if this helps. By the way the years composted horse manure in this pen is going to make an awesome garden area.


Babies everywhere & socks the horse

5 Mar

I have mostly finished the chicken coop at our new house and have moved our 2 hens and all the chicks out there. The coop is 12×10 and the run is 42×12. The chicks are loving having all this room in the coop to run and flutter their wings.
I bought two bottle baby milk goats last sat. they are saanan cross but are larger framed than the Nubians that she also was selling. I think they will cross good with my boer buck. Their names are Daphne and Maris from Frasier.


Part of the deal we made when buying this house was that they would leave a horse. He team ropes and his family breed their own horses. So the horse he’s leaving hasn’t been broke yet and it’s been 20 years since I’ve broke a horse, so I found a 3yr old filly that some people were selling. It was their daughters horse that she rode in play days. She decided that she wanted a bigger horse and I figured this would make a nice addition for my girls. Meet Socks.