Category

Farming

in Blog, Farming, Farmlife, Published in Daily Press

Farmer Safety and My Broken Arm

As I sit at my computer, awkwardly attempting to type this article with one hand, I am inspired to reflect on the dangers of farming.  Granted, my arm is broken from training a horse, but livestock injuries are an all too common part of farming and this is definitely not my first farm injury. Dealing with large animals, long hours, big equipment, bad weather and other intense conditions, farmers don’t just sit on their porches all day sipping lemonade. Our work can actually be quite dangerous. A decade-long study of farm safety issues shows that injuries and fatalities can almost…

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in Blog, Farming

Presidential Hopeful Hillary is pro-GMO

Not that any of us are surprised.  You all know about Monsanto, “The most evil company in the world” of course.  Their GMO’s have been linked to fatal kidney disease in humans, tumors in rats and the crop failures cause a farmer suicide every 30 seconds.  Monsanto and their GMOs have been banned in 50 countries.  Not our’s of course. Monsanto is well known to have the government in its pocket and with Hillary Clinton, it’s no different. This video is a recording of a speech at the BIO Concention 2014 where Hillary talks about how she supports GMOs.  It’s a bit…

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deep bedding chickens
in Blog, Chickens, Livestock, Poultry, Published in Daily Press

The Deep Litter Method

A good friend of mine prides herself on how immaculate her chicken coop is. Granted she only has about five chickens, but it seems as though the droppings have only barely hit the floor before they’re cleaned up. She cleans it morning and evening and it’s so clean you can eat off the ground (okay, not really). Then there’s my coop. We have a little over a hundred chickens and I clean my coop once. No, not once per day. Once per year. Disgusting you say? Healthy is what I say back. What is the Deep Litter Method The Deep…

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in Blog, farm business, Farming and the law, Uncategorized

We got our permit! Cottage Industries Permit Part IV

It’s 9:45am and the San Bernardino County Inspector was supposed to be here at 9:30am.  Hopefully she won’t be much later.  I’m very nervous.  Not because I think there’s anything wrong with our kitchen, but because once you invite county onto your property, they now are looking around at everything.  I might get approval for this Cottage Operations Permit, but I might get 10 other citations for who knows what else.  I’m praying that it goes well.  We’ve had county out enough times for our farmstay permit so hopefully anything they would pick on is already taken care of. 9:57… still…

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in Blog, Livestock, Sheep

How to Shear a Sheep

Nobody shears sheep in the High Desert where we live.  Well at least nobody I could find.  And the summer’s are excruciating so when I first got sheep, they HAD to be sheared.  I decided, like so many other things, that I could just do it myself.  Well, let me tell you, shearing sheep is NOT easy, but it can be done. What you need to shear a sheep Muscle It takes a lot of muscle to hold the sheep and maneuver it around so the very first thing you need is muscle.  If you only have a few sheep…

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in Blog, Farming, Livestock, Published in Daily Press

Handling the Summer Heat

Heat Coping Strategies For You and Your Animals Yikes!  It’s 85 degrees at 7:00am and it’s not even officially summer yet. There are many things I like about living in the desert, but summer is not on the list.  It wasn’t so bad back when I spent my days inside an air conditioned home, but now I am outside most of the day working with animals, mucking pens, pulling weeds or, if I am inside, I am hovering over a hot stove cooking caramel or jam to sell (which is delicious by the way). Heat Coping Strategies For Your Animals…

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in Blog, Farming and the law, Uncategorized

Cottage Industries Permit Part III

Well I went back into county to turn in my application and fee.  After sitting and waiting for an hour, I was finally able to turn in the application.  The worker made a photocopy of it for my records and an extra photocopy of the back of the application where I could write and sign: “I agree to abide by the 17 restrictions.” I have no idea why I had to write this because there is a place to sign on the bottom of the application that you agree to abide by the restrictions.  *sigh* They wouldn’t take my fee,…

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in Blog, Bloodhounds, Farm Dogs, Livestock, Published in Daily Press

Farm Dogs

Dogs have always played an important role on the farm from helpers, to protectors to simple companionship.  And the breeds are just as varied.  There’s no wrong breed for the job of farm dog, but each dog has special and unique abilities. The dogs of Flip Flop Ranch At my farm, we have two different breeds of dogs: Bloodhounds and Brussels Griffons.  The hound personality just seems ideally suited to farmlife-easy going, but willing to work hard when asked.  Hounds of all varieties are fantastic for hunting, but our’s are actually trained to hunt people.  We work with police departments…

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in Blog, Chickens, Livestock, Poultry, Published in Daily Press

Basics of Incubating eggs

As soon as the weather begins to warm, chickens across the world begin to think of hatching eggs and raising baby chicks.  But they’re not the only ones.  Spring also begins humans thinking about hatching eggs and raising baby chicks.  Of course the way we do it isn’t nearly as natural and our success rates vary.  Still, with practice and knowledge we can get just about as good.  Human success rates for incubating eggs is about 80% while hens are at 90%.  Not bad. Incubating eggs Out at Flip Flop Ranch, incubating eggs is one of the biggest parts of…

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in Blog, Chickens, Livestock, Poultry, Published in Daily Press

Why you should raise chickens

Chickens are usually the first livestock the aspiring farmer purchases and if you don’t have any of these fluffy critters running around your yard, you should really consider it. Here at Flip Flop Ranch, we have a few hundred of them, but our start in farming began with only one. Betty was a Frizzle with curly feathers. She was raised in a cage on my bathroom counter, wore diapers around the house and pecked at the door to go in and out. I remember being so proud when she laid her first egg…on the dining room floor. Chickens make great…

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