Collecting Straw – A Day of Abundance

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The Mudgee Show was on last Friday and Saturday. So Sunday was clean-up day. We turned up with 2 utes and our small cattle trailer to help. Collecting straw doesn’t appear to be a high priority of most people. In the absence of people willing to collect the soiled straw from the animal exhibits, it would end up at the local tip. What a waste! It took us a couple of hours with the help of one of the show volunteers and his bobcat. We had 5 pitch forks and a few other implements. At various times, Adon, Antoine and Adeline were in the utes and the trailer jumping up and down on the straw, compacting the loads. We knew we had collected a lot, but until we got home and unloaded, we didn’t realise how much!

Windrow of straw
Windrow of straw

Adon is a very happy boy. More straw means more mulch, more compost heaps, more soil fertility, more soil. He has plans to completely mulch the two covered vegetable gardens. The outside one has already been sown with some of its winter crop. Unfortunately Adon sowed the brassica row the day before we were evacuated because of the fires. The temperatures were searingly hot and the winds were ferocious so many of the seedlings died as they germinated. He’ll be resowing today. The inside covered garden will now be used as a tree seedling nursery. If Adon has any straw left over, he wants to start fully mulching the orchard.

And next time there’s a race meeting, the local agricultural show with animal exhibits or the local ram show, we’ll be there with our hay forks, rakes and brooms, willing to clean up and utilise what others are happy to take to the tip.

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