Haying Time In The Valley

Reader Contribution by Ginnie Baker
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The weather has been so wet, with rain every other day, that haying time has been delayed here in the Valley.

My friend and neighbor, Gary, and his sons were here and finally able to mow and bale this week between sudden downpours. It’s really late for the first cutting on the front pasture, but they got more than 30 round bales.

Another friend and neighbor has been mowing and baling their fields; they raise cattle and ended up with more than 90 round bales a couple of weeks ago. They are safely stored in the barn for winter feeding.

This is a busy time for our farming friends.

It’s August but it feels like fall is in the air. Our average night temperatures have been in the low to mid 50s. I’ve noticed that some of my pumpkins are already turning orange along with the berries on my Bittersweet. I certainly hope it doesn’t mean an early fall and winter.

Winter last year was one of the hardest in this part of Ohio in many years.

I’m still waiting for tomatoes to ripen. Several friends are saying the same thing; with the cool night temperatures, they just aren’t ripening. I’m very glad I had a bumper crop last year and canned as much as I did because I think I’ll really need it this year.

Our Richland County Fair is going on this week. It’s an exciting time for the 4-H kids when they show their prize animals. My neighbor’s son, Spencer, will be showing one of his calves. This will be the last year he can participate because he graduated from high school last year. He’ll be showing “Nugget.” I think Nugget has taken lessons on how to act up from my miniature donkey, Samson, also called Sammy!

Spencer has been working on leading lessons in their back pasture. We share an electric fence that divides our pastures so when I go to the barn, I can watch Spencer with Nugget. Nugget will do very well for a while but then suddenly bends down on his two front legs with his hind quarters in the air and refuses to move. I’m sure it’s very frustrating for Spencer but it’s funny to watch.

Spencer will try his hardest to get Nugget up but he just stays down until he’s ready to get up. Then he jumps up and tries to walk faster than Spencer. Spencer’s mom and I have decided we both have “unique” critters! Her Belgian, also named Sammy, has the same disposition as my Sammy. He’s just a lot bigger!

It’s hard to believe that our school will be in session on August 20th this year. It seems to begin earlier and earlier every year. I remember when I was a kid, we didn’t go back until after Labor Day and the last day of school was around May 25 because the boys had to be on the farms during planting.

Times have changed….

I’m the coordinator of our adult Safety Patrol for the Bellville Elementary School so I have to get busy and make sure I have enough volunteers. I’ve done this for 11 school years and enjoy seeing the kids grow up and go on to the middle school.

Summer is going much too fast!

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