Monday, June 11, 2012

Spring Cut

We're back at Paia getting settled in and working on various projects. There are a number of spots to clean up, like the firewood left over from cutting trees last Winter, which was stacked out on the meadow.

We moved it and restacked it closer to the house.

The Spring cut of the entire property is done. Jüri started last Wednesday and finished Saturday. The job's gotten harder with all the young trees that need to be cut around, but we won't do the whole thing again until September. During the Summer we'll cut the yards and drives, areas with invasive species like goutweed, and of course around the new trees.

In the past we've left the hay on the ground, which isn't the best practice for wooded meadow management. The clippings return their nutrients to the soil, which advantages species like goutweed and dandelions as well as woody plants. A less rich soil favours meadow plants. So this year we're raking up the hay and composting it.

Paul is learning to use a pitch fork,

and hauls hay away while his mother rests.

His interpretation of "make a stack next to the old foundation" was interesting. We meant all on one place.

After we piled it up he seemed to get the idea.

We started with the river bank so that the grass at the edge grows back right away and prevents any erosion. We raked up the other side today. This is the neighbor's property where we planted some black alder to screen the Ojakalda house.

We had to install a bridge to get the hay back across.

There's a lot more raking. Some of it is less critical. There are areas where the soil is poorer, where waterlines were dug in and too much clay made it to the surface that will benefit from a little more biomass.

The raked areas look better as well. The new grass on the bank behind the Ojakalda house is filling in nicely.

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Location:Taadikvere küla, Estonia

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