We had a lot of fun with the kids from the Monmouth-Independence YMCA who came out to the Rogue Farms Hopyard last week.
They’ll be regular visitors this summer. We built raised garden beds for them and they got to work right away digging holes and filling them with the plants they brought with them.
And then they saw the pigs…
It’s been over a week since we put the pigs on arthritis medicine and the difference is amazing.
To be honest, it’s also quite a relief to see that Voo and Doo have plenty of life left in them
When the first flowers of the season appeared in our neighbor’s cherry orchard, we knew the spring nectar flow had begun.
This is one of the prettiest times of the year on the Rogue Farms Hopyard. And for the Rogue Honeybees, one of the busiest.
In Greek mythology, it was the hunter Narcissus who was so handsome that when he saw his own reflection – he fell in love with himself.
Today, we’d call him Tom and he’d be a turkey.
The first big event of the hops growing season is stringing the trellis wires in the Rogue Farms Hopyard.
There are thousands of strings, made from Sri Lanka cocoanut husks, that are tied to the wires, dropped to the ground, and staked into the hop rows.
As you’ll see in the photos, it takes military like precision to get it all done right.
It will not be necessary to bring your own sheep to the workshop.
You don’t have to be a professional wrestler to shear a sheep – but it sure helps.
Getting the right combination of strength and balance while shearing off wool is just one of the things you’ll learn at our DIY Workshop: Sheep Shearing and Spinning. The workshop will be held this weekend at Rogue Farms in Independence, Oregon starting at 1:00pm on Sunday, April 14th. There’s a $10 charge for this workshop, but you’ll be going home with your very own drop spindle.
At Rogue Farms we love DIY. It’s why we grow our own hops, barley, pumpkins, rye, honey and other ingredients for our beers and spirits.
We hold a DIY Workshop every month. Here’s the schedule for the rest of the year.
DIY Workshop Calendar: (All workshops are held on Sundays)
- May 19th: Backyard Beekeeping
- June 2nd: Cycling the Willamette Valley
- July 21st: Composting and Worm Farms
- August 11th: Sausage Making
- September 14th: Soap Making
- October 27th: Cider Making
- November 10th: Smoking Food
- December 15th: Cooking with Rogue Beer
We call them Free Range Chicks for a reason, and lately they’re ranging farther and farther away from their base of operations near the Rogue Farms Hop ‘N’ Bed.
Just the other day, we started seeing them on the lawn between the Hopyard and the Chatoe Rogue. For a Chick, this is a pretty good hike. So what’s going on?
The sad-looking picture you’re about to see is our Potbellied sow Voo on the examination table at the Lois Bates Acheson Veterinary Teaching Hospital at Oregon State. Voo’s had some trouble with her back legs, so we took her in to find out what was going on. The official diagnosis is Bilateral Stifle Osteoarthritis. AKA, knee arthritis.
Click here for printable version.
Hops bines appear in early March and are ready for the first cut by the end of the month.
It’s almost time for the first cut of our 42 acres of aroma hops.
We trim back the bines every March. It’s good for the health of the bines and it prevents uneven growth.
Hops are susceptible to mildew and fungal diseases, which are most likely to start in early spring because that’s when we get the most rain during growing season. The first cut removes diseased leaves and spores. As the the bines and leaves grow back, the weather turns drier and the crop is more likely to be disease free.
We also want to give the bines a “fresh start” so they grow and ripen at the same rate. I’s important that the all the hops are ready for harvest at about the same time. The harvest is usually spread out over a two or three week period in August and September. That gives us enough time to process one variety while the other varieties finish ripening. But what we don’t want is a situation where half the Revolution hops are ready for harvest, but the rest won’t be ready for another week. That’s a hop growers nightmare.
And so, the first cut is almost as big of a deal as the second cut, aka the harvest.
While waiting for the bines to grow, March is also a good time to repair and maintain the trellis wires.