Kiss My Grass Farm

  (Morgantown, Indiana)
[ Member listing ]

Spring is finally here!

 Spring is here! After what has been a hard winter at our place it is a relief to see the grass greening up and hear the peepers calling.

Spring has brought quite a few new additions to the farm. We have four 1/2 Dexter calves (one set of twins) romping in the pasture, there are 2 litters of Red Wattles in our new barn with 3 litters expected any day now. And the sheep have started lambing. There are 3 lambs already.

We've added a Jersey milk cow named Hazel who is ready to calf any day now and 5 Muscovy ducks.

And every morning I go down to the basement to check for peeps in the incubator. We have moved 13 little fluffy chicks to the brooder so far.

I love spring!

 
 

Support Heritage Pork with your fork!!

After what seems to us a very long time, we have Red Wattle pork available for sale by the pound.  We are really excited. In fact I put a ham in the slowcooker as my husband was bringing in the frozen meat from the processor.

Red Wattle pork isn't the other white meat. It's real pork for real people - juicy, flavorful, filling.  It's the pork I remember from my grandpa's farm back  when pigs were out on pasture not on concrete.

Our Red Wattles are pasture raised and free from hormones and antibiotics. We a proud to helping to conserve this critically rare livestock breed, but we need your help.

To save rare livestock breeds we need to use them for their original purpose. In this case - food. If there is no demand for Red Wattle pork then these wonderful giants will disappear.

We have most cuts available for $4/lb including breakfast sausage (mild & hot). To check available cuts and to reserve your meat please email us at: kissmygrassfarm@hotmail.com or call Brian at 812-521-1063.

Unfortunately, we are not set up to ship and regulations would not let ship out of state in any case. We welcome pick up at the farm. We'd be happy to give you a walking tour while you are here! :)

 

Dot

Kiss My Grass Farm

Brown County Indiana

 

 
 

The Secret Garden Tour in Brown County the 11th and 12th of July

Just wanted to to drop you a note about the Secret Garden tour in Brown County, Indiana taking place July 11 & 12th.
 
The tour features gardens that are not usually open to the public. It is sponsored by the garden club and is one of their major fundraisers for the year. The garden club uses the proceeds to fund projects like landscaping for Habitat for Humanity homes. It is a driving tour featuring 5 gardens throughout Brown County.
 
We are very excited to be the first working garden featured on the tour!

We are planning to offer walking tours of the farm on the hour. The tour will include not only the gardens but an introduction to our pastured poultry and the egg mobile, a stop at the apiary, a visit with our heritage cattle herd, the haflingers & Shetland sheep and a chance to feed a biscuit to our critically rare Red Wattle Hogs. We are looking forward to this great opportunity to re-aquaint folks with family farming and where their food comes from. 
 
Tickets are available from the Brown County Visitors and Convention Bureau all week or from a garden club member or they may be purchased the day of the tour at any of the garden stops. Below is the information from the Bureau's site with a link to the brochure.

Secret Gardens of Brown County Tour
July 11, 2009 - July 12, 2009

Third Annual Secret Gardens of Brown County Tour.... This self-guided tour of five gardens lets you see a secret area of Brown County, never shared before... Brown County Garden Club members open their gardens, sharing their secrets and selling plants, seeds and garden items!  Map and brochure included when tickets are purchased.  Tickets available at the Brown County Visitors Center.  All proceeds support the Brown County Garden Club's activities in the community, including landscaping for Brown County Habitat for Humanity Homes.

Times: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
Location:  Various gardens in rural Brown County
Phone:  812.988.6927; 800.753.3255
Admission:  $10.00 adults; under 13 free

Here is a link to the brochure:  http://www.browncounty.com/docs/Event-2009SecretGardenbrochure.pdf
 
Come on out and support a good cause!

 
Take care,
 
Dot & Brian
Kiss My Grass Farm

812-521-1063

 
 

Meet me at The Brown County Village Market for a muffin in the morning!

House Bill 1309 passed into law about a month ago. We've been waiting very impatiently for it to go into affect July 1st. It's a great thing for home based vendors and consumers alike. It means we are now able to sell baked goods we've produced in our home kitchens at the farmers market. . . with the appropriate labeling of course. Labeling requirements include: contact information, common name, weight or count, date processed, ingredients listed from most to least and the official Dept. of Health disclaimer. "This product was home produced and processed and the production area has not been inspected by the State Department of Health. " - in at least 10 point font. It's hard to get all that on a label small enough that it doesn't cover up the whole package! It does allow you to post one label/sign with the required information on say a cookie jar so you can take out just the number of cookies the customer wants. That makes it easier. We have been feverishly baking at our house in preparation for market in Nashville in the morning with loaves of cinnamon, dill, whole wheat and white bread; banana, blueberry and mixed berry muffins, and lots of yummy cookies. Come on out and join us!
 
 

Indiana House Bill 1309 brings bread to the masses! ... but not until July1st 2009

Yes, Indiana House Bill 1309 has passed into law. And we are really excited to have one more roadblock out of the way for farmers to sell value added items at farmers market. We started making plans for all the goodies we wanted to sell as soon as we heard the news.

Then we got a copy of 1309. It doesn't take affect until July 1st, 2009.

Rats! Oh well so now we have more time to plan and make ready.

When the law goes into effect we will have egg noodles, my daughters amazing cupcakes, artisan breads, homemade chocolate covered marshmellows, jelly rolls and persimmon pudding at the VIllage Market in Nashville on Saturdays until the end of October.

Hurrah!

 
 

Chicken Review

One of our workshare CSA members bought our first Poulet Redbro broiler this year and took it right home for dinner here is her review: 

"I just wanted to pass on a quick review of these chickens. I picked mine up on Thursday. We cooked one and cut the other in half then froze.


We used the bbq and did a dry rub that included several of the herbs that came with our share this week. We cooked the chicken whole in a beer-can chicken style. This chicken was moist and very flavorful. You could taste the meat, but it was not overpowering. Sometimes when you bbq chicken, you taste more of the sauces than the chicken. Not the case with these birds. Moist, tender and flavorful - one of the best meals I've had in a while. It was a real treat.

If you haven't reserved at least one of these birds, I suggest you do - just to give them a try and compare them to the fowl you typically get at the grocer. The 4 lb chicken fed three adults very well and we had left-overs for the next day."

It's nice to get some feedback on our birds! :)

 

 
 

Dexter bull + White Park cow = skunk

Yep that's right now we have a skunk calf. lol
We bred our Dexter bull, Will to our 2 White Park cows. White Park calves are usually white with a black noses, black in their ears and black "freckles" on their backs and legs. One of the crossbred calves came out with a black body and head and a white stripe down his back like a skunk.
He sure is cute!

Kiss My Grass Farm Grass Kissed Chicken

They're here again - our pasture raised, hormone free all natural chicken!!

This year we changed the type of broiler we raise to the Poulet Redbro. These new birds are more agressive foragers and have a more natural growth pattern than the Cornish Cross.
It's been a challenging spring to raise chickens on pasture with all the cool wet weather. We've kept plastic sheeting over 3 sides and the top of each chicken tractor to retain warmth and protect the growing birds from the weather. We've had to move the tractors more often than usual because of the wet ground. But it's all been worth it!
We'll be processing our first batch of broilers this week.
Every spring the first batch is like learning how to process birds all over again. It takes Brian and I a while to get our rythm back. Once we hit our stride, we'll be able to process about 100 birds in a day thanks to the scalder and chicken plucker that Brian built.
Some folks wonder why we process all the birds we raise ourselves. There are a couple of reasons: 1. Chickens that aren't stressed out from travelling hundreds of miles to a processing plant are better tasting and tenderer. 2. We like to know how the meat is handled.
In a processing plant, chicken carcasses can soak in cooling vats for hours in water that is changed infrequently.
On the farm we take care not to stress the birds any more than is absolutely necessary. We pay close attention to how the meat is cooled and handled and packaged.
We believe that you will taste the difference, but you won't know if your don't try it.
Try one and decide for yourself.

Here comes the SUN!

HURRAH! the weather report doesn't call for any significant rain for the next 4 days.
Hopefully that will dry things out enough to finish getting the first plantings into the garden. :)

Our workingshare CSa folks will have lots to do this week in the garden.

 

I haven't done much blogging on here lately. So today I'll be posting more than one!

 Have a great day

 

Dot

Tags:
 
 

Finally Spring!

Daffodils blooming, grass growing, piglets rooting, chicks peeping and the lambs frolicking in the field. It's spring and all's right with my world. :)

 It was a trying winter around our place. Brian was in a cast, I had pneumonia and a straight line wind took out barn down. 

But now it's spring and we're both better. The barn's still broken but we've taken this disaster and turned it into an opportunity to redesign the barn to better suit our critters.

We've got our new greenhouse up. Just a little leveling to do inside and we'll be able to use it. All the little seedlings are nestled in warm and snug right now in our sunroom.We've got lettuce and spinach up under floating row covers in the garden and i'm hoping for 3-4 dry days so Brian can till the balance of the garden. I need to get more veggies in and I want to get my strawberry patch moved.

 It's all very exciting! This is my favorite time of year with everything waking up and all the possibilities stretching out into the future.

 kissmygrassfarm.net

 Dot

Ps. Give us a call and stop out to visit


 
 

A little new year miracle

She's finally here!

We have our first baby Dexter. Katie gave us a beautiful little black heifer sometime during the night on Friday. We found her Saturday morning. She's shiny, black and frisky. I think we'll name her KMGF Grass Kissed Promise.
My mother, Brian and I had a "baby pool" to guess when Katie would calf. We each put in $1. I won. I'm putting my cash in the piggy bank for future wishes.
Momma and baby are in the barn now and doing fine. I'll post pics as soon as I can get them off the camera.


We have 3 more Dexter heifers ready to calf any time now... so stay tuned for updates!

Dot

 
 

Christmas Critters

Well, it's 4 days 'til Christmas the Red Wattle hogs are all nestled snug in their hay and the Scottish Highland Cattle are wishing the horses would all go away and 200 hundred chickens are ready to lay...

Ok so it's not the 12 days of Christmas but it is our farm. This year we decided we would add to our menagerie of endangered livestock breeds. So we purchased 7 Highland heifers and 2 more Red Wattles instead of presents that wouldn't eat the wrapping paper and the tree. :)

The Highlands have joined our rainbow herd: 2 White Parks, 1 Belted Galloway, 1 Charlais/Simmental cross, and 5 Dexters. Brian loves these shaggy cows with their graceful horns and friendly curious personalities. They may just be nosier than our Dexters! But not wider. The Dexters are due to calf any time now. . . maybe we'll have calves on Christmas morning.

The 2 RW's we brought home from Bud Nichol's farm in Missouri.( Read more about that adventure on our farm blog at: kissmygrassfarm.net )Grass Dancer is the queen of the hog house now. She tolerates us and will come up to the fence for a biscuit. Sampson has become the darling of the farm with his gentle nature, big old ears, rubbery lips and his huge size. He will lumber out to visit with anyone who comes close to their field. He loves having his back scratched. He'll even sit for a biscuit if he's in the mood!

Yes the hogs love treats. They will sniff at them. Then ever so delicately take the dog biscuit in their rubbery lips before chomping it up. Even my 7 year old nephew likes to give them treats even if they are taller than he is.

So on Christmas morning while other folks are unwrapping their present under the tree, we'll be out feeding our Christmas presents their Christmas treats.

Merry Christmas to all to and to all a good night!

Dot

 

 
 

What do you do with a 25 pound turkey?

25 pounds  - that's a dressed weight not live weight turkey.

You see each year we decide on a couple of farm "experiments". Some times it's a new vegetable or a new gardening technique this year it was a turkey "tractor". 

In the spring, we bought 6 "test" turkeys. Broad-breasted Whites were available at the mill where we have our poultry feed custom ground. Ok. So far so good.

We'd been told all sorts of horror stories about raising turkeys: they die for no reason, they'll drown in a rain storm standing there with their mouths open, you'll never be able to raise them on pasture and on and on and on. . .

So we decided we would treat the turkeys much as we have our pastured broilers. We kept them in the brooder an extra week and then moved 6 turkeys to a tractor cage in the pasture. So far so good.

We moved them daily and 6 turkeys ate and grew all summer. Brian enjoyed the turkeys immensely. He would gobble at them and they would "talk" back to him. They didn't eat all that much feed but foraged very effectively.

At 16 weeks we brought 6 turkeys in to butcher just like the books we had read said to do. I had to work that weekend. Brian said, "It's ok, honey. There's only 6 of them I can do it by myself - no problem!"

Butchering day:That's when Brian realized he had a problem. The toms were huge and the hens weren't much smaller!

He soon discovered that trying to scald a 40 lb bird was like trying to dead lift a wet 50 pound bag of feed over and over.... that's really work!! Brian could barely get the job done. Next it went to the plucker. We have a tub plucker. The bottom plate is supposed to turn. The turkey was so heavy it wouldn't turn fast enough to pluck.

Time to regroup. He ended up plucking all six birds by hand.

The largest tom dressed out to almost 27 pounds with the smallest hen at 15 pounds. So what are we going to do with all that turkey? We wondered that too for a little while.

Well the lord works in mysterious ways. The next morning my sister-in-law called with big news: my nephew is getting married and he wants to have a "Parker style" pitch in for his wedding reception complete with turkey.

Well, we gave them 5 turkeys for a pre-wedding present on the spot. We saved the largest tom. Now we are anxiously waiting for Thanksgiving day to taste how our experiment turned out. I'll let you know.

What did we learn from our experiment? 1. Turkeys are enjoyable to raise. 2. Smaller birds would be better. Maybe midget whites. 3. Everything works out for the best in the end.

We're looking forward to raising turkeys next summer.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Dot

 

 
 

Rites of Fall

The changing season brings with it some new chores around our place. The last batch of broiler chicks has gone to the pasture, we're putting up the hoop house for winter quarters to house the laying hens in warmth and comfort for the cold months and the new high tunnel and heated greenhouse will go up soon. It's time to cut wood and button up the barn and sheep shed. Time to think about going over the chicken tractors and making repairs. But the best things about fall here on Kiss My Grass Farm are persimmons are falling and green leafy vegetables are growing like crazy! Brian's been picking up and pulping buckets of yummy persimmons every day. He's taken to rewarding himself for all his hard work by baking a persimmon pudding from each batch. Hmmmmm is he gaining weight? Don't worry we have plenty of pulp packaged up in pint bags, frozen and ready to go. In the garden, we've been blessed this fall. We have 5 kinds of lettuce, 4 kinds of mustard, mesclun, beet greens, kale, spinach and chard ready for picking. Soon we should have baby beets and baby carrots too. So consider yourself invited: Come on out to the farm, enjoy all the fall colors and go home with fresh greens, persimmon pulp and some fresh eggs from our pastured hens. Take care, Dot
 
 
RSS feed for Kiss My Grass Farm blog. Right-click, copy link and paste into your newsfeed reader

Calendar


Search


Navigation


Topics


Feeds


BlogRoll