Sunday, July 23, 2017

A Look At Our New 2-Ply Rambouillet Yarn!

Wild Rose Farm - 2-Ply Rambouillet Wool Yarn
Here's a glamour shot of our yarn finishing up the process at The Mill At Meadowlands. We have ~200 yard skeins of this 2-ply, but I don't have a total skein count or wpi on it at the moment ... details, details!  Rumor has it that it's soft & squishy too ... a lovely farm yarn.  You'll have to stay tuned for the details on this batch!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Yarn Processing Continued ...

The Mill at Meadowlands - Skein Winder
Wild Rose Farm 2-ply Rambouillet Yarn

Here's another picture of our Rambouillet 2-ply yarn in process at The Mill at Meadowlands. The skeins will be ~ 200 yards. The bobbins below will be wound off next and turned into skeins ...
It's interesting to see the process and Ruth makes sure to keep you posted every step of the way as we make decisions on the final product.  Or, as she likes to say, "what kind of yarn the wool wants to become", lol! :)

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

More Yarn Coming!

The Mill At Meadowlands
Ruth Processing Wild Rose Farm Rambouillet Wool!
 
Wow! We had a chance to view our Rambouillet wool processing at The Mill At Meadowlands a couple of days ago. We visited family in the Chester County, PA area and then took a ride to the mill in Maryland to see our wool being processed. Thanks to Ruth, owner of the mill, and Brianna for taking the time to explain & show off the process.  Brianna was operating the spinner and here is a sample of what our current batch of 2-ply looks like ...
The Mill At Meadowlands
Wild Rose Farm - 2-ply Rambouillet Yarn Sample On The Spinner!
We picked up our finished 3-ply "sport/DKish" weight yarn while we were there. It's currently resting and releasing the moisture from the mill spinning process. All in all, a great visit and we've gotten some really soft, squeezable fine wool yarn ... can't wait to gather some natural dye materials as the season goes on and start dyeing some yarn!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Out For A Morning Stroll!

Two Wild Turkey Hens & Their 5 Little Ones Tagging Along!
Just before we went out to do the usual morning chores & feeding, these 2 wild turkey hens showed up at the stream crossing in the pasture field.  This is the second time in a week that we've seen them at that same spot. Today they decided to walk across the paddock & come up on the driveway.
You can just see four of the five little ones next to the fence. A couple of them had hopped up onto the fence rail, but I wasn't quick enough to get the picture. The picture was taken from the kitchen window that was opened very carefully so that the hens didn't get spooked. They are experts at detecting motion & noise!

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Rambouillets In The Barn

Wild Rose Farm Ewes & Lambs Heading To The Barn
We're getting ready to sell some lambs, so we started the weaning process. Every Rambouillet ewe lamb this spring was born as a twin to a ram lamb. So ... if we want to sell a ewe lamb, we end up weaning both the ewe lamb and the ram lamb off of their mother. We now have 12 lambs in the barn. Registration papers have been filled out & sent in for 5 ewe lambs and 1 ram lamb. We'll wean another group of lambs once we give the last newborn lambs their booster shots and move them out of the barn.
Final lambing update: WRF #143 had a ewe lamb, the last lamb of the season, on the 4th of July!  

Thursday, June 29, 2017

More New Lambs!

New Ewe Lamb at Wild Rose Farm!
Well, who knows what happened, but we have a group of 3 ewes that are now lambing. These are their first lambs and we figured that they were not bred for some reason. Then they seemed to be getting a little bigger, so we penned them in the barn to keep a closer eye on them. Sure enough, their udders started to fill in and we now have 2 new lambs. The first one from #146 was born on Tuesday and last night #147 had a ewe lamb. One more ewe to go!  We pulled the ram out on February 4th, once he started to rough house with the bred ewes, so it was possible for these three to get bred. Let's just say that this saved them from the auction as non-breeders (and the lamb & rice "natural" dog food bag).

Friday, June 23, 2017

Farm Activities ...

Sheep Watching The Cherry Picking!
We've been busy with all kinds of activities here (and not here) at Wild Rose Farm. On the home front, the sour cherry trees were loaded this year and we got a lot picked and "put up" as they say.
Cherry Picking 101!
 So far the count has been 2 cherry pies, 8 quarts of frozen cherries, and a dozen half-pints of cherry jam.  We've been sharing the tops of the trees with the birds and the season's not done yet ...
1st Fresh Baked Cherry Pie of the Season!
During some pruning work along our road frontage I discovered a previously unknown (to me) mulberry tree.  The branches were hard to reach, but a quart of mulberries managed to find their way into the freezer too!  A few of the ewes and lambs found their way over near the fence line while I was picking the mulberries and kept an eye on things ...
A Few Of The Ewes & Lambs Morning Grazing
 Do you ever wish you'd done something 20 years ago?  On one of our rainy days, we drove to D-S Livestock Equipment in Maryland & picked up this piece of equipment to add to the end of our processing & sorting chute. We've been an operation that makes the sheep pay for their equipment and this will make processing and hoof trimming a lot easier for us ...
D-S Livestock Equipment "Roll O'Matic"!
Finally, this week we took what I call our "non-committed" wool to the Washington County Wool Pool. I volunteered with check-in for both days. It's a great way to get to talk & meet with regional shepherds!  This year the high bidder for the pool required that the wool was NOT GRADED and had to be shipped in plastic wool sacks. They will re-weigh & grade the wool and then send checks directly to the producers.  This was a big change and some folks were not happy since they had already bagged their fleeces according to past practice.  We made sure to separate all of our fine Rambouillet wool in one bag.  We'll see how it goes.