Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Hay Fever

Any Southerner who knows a thing can tell you that no farmer would ever let fescue or orchard grass go to waste when there's livestock to feed during the winter months. And so, we cut it and bale it and store it for later! Back when I was a kid it got laid out nice and neat in those little bitty square bales that had to be pitched onto a trailer and into a barn by sweaty young men who did it because that was the only way. Nowadays, the process has been streamlined a bit. First pass of Summer '08 went into play this week and I was privy to the entire process just by driving down the road.

After the hay is cut and dries for a day or so, this young lady comes up with on her tractor pulling a big old rake that pulls the cut grass into neat long piles. She seemed to be loving every minute of her work!
Then the guy with the baler comes along behind her... sometimes they cross paths...and when there's enough in the back of his rig, a big fat round roll of hay drops out onto the ground behind him.
These bales are way too big to throw up on a trailer, so my brother spears a couple with his John Deere and takes off down Pecan Lane toward the main road.This year we've got a brand new pole barn to store the bales in. It beats the heck out of having to maneuver the tractor into the ancient dairy barn on a cold winter's morn when the cows are hungry.

Gives a whole new meaning to the term "hay ride" doesn't it?