Spring in Vermont


Here's what the farm looked like on April 27th this year:

a field lightly covered in snow

Of course it was all melted by around noon the next day! In northern Vermont it's a good rule of thumb to keep your snow tires on from Halloween to Mother's Day, lest you incur the wrath of the spring snow storm. There's a saying about snow that its "poor man's fertilizer". Turns out this isn't just an old farmer's tale. All precipitation brings nitrates out of the atmosphere and on to the soil, the advantage of snow is that this fertilizer is "slow release" gradually soaking into the ground as the snow melts!

Grazing season start late around here too. The cows and I spend April and early May impatiently watching the grass grow! The cows would happily munch down every scrap of grass as soon as it appears but it's much better for the grass (and late season grazing) if it gets a chance to put on two or three leaves first. So even though they are ready to eat grass and I am ready to be done feeding hay, it's not time yet! I wonder if they dream of lush green pastures this time of year.

red devon cows grazing on a lush green pasture

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