Beneath the blanket of snow that covers our farm, lush pastures rest and wait.
Winter provides one the longest stretches of time when our pastures can rest before another grazing season begins. Rotational grazing is an important component in our sustainable farm practices. Each summer and fall, we utilize rotational grazing. We subdivide each of our fields into smaller paddocks, allowing the sheep to graze in one area while other areas rest. The sheep are moved sequentially through the fields throughout the grazing season. By rotating the sheep through smaller portions of the field, we reduce parasite loads, prevent over grazing, allow for natural selection of plant diversity, and promote natural nutrient replenishment.
We also share a couple of fields with a neighboring farmer. We graze our sheep lightly in the early spring, and he gets a cut of hay off the fields in mid summer. Haying the fields provides a natural way to eliminate parasites, allowing for clean grazing and improving animal health.
Now, during our long winter months, the pastures lie in wait, covered in a sparkling blanket of snow, for another year of grazing.