Thursday, October 24, 2013

Chickens on the Farm

The girls always run to the gate when we head to the barn.
They are such friendly chickens, but are also looking
 for some fruit or bread to snack on.

This hen is enjoying the sun in the front of the barn.

How sweet!  The White Leghorn is giving her Rhode Island Red friend a hug!

Champ is checking this hen out as she gets comfortable on the hay.

Mikey also stopped by to see the hen.

Kitten doesn't seem to mind the chickens and they're also comfortable around him.

We had a truckload of hay parked under the roof of the barn
 and within minutes the hens had climbed onto the hay and then
 proceeded to climb onto the rafters above the alpacas!

This hen is tight rope walking high above the boys.

This is one daring hen!

This hen got on top of our storage cabinet in the barn and
 was acting like she wanted to nest up there!

The next day she got up there again, so I set her up with
 some hay and she laid an egg!

The chickens never cease to amaze us with their antics.  They're a lot of fun to have on the farm!

Alpaca Snapshots

The boys are enjoying some grazing time out back.

Adonis stops grazing to sniff noses with Mia.

I find Mellea in the hay box every once in awhile, just like this!

Miko is showing that he's a tough male while standing tall on this rock.

This is a great female named Peg.

Miko is heading back to the barn from enjoying some grazing time.

Smokey enjoyed a roll in the grass and ended up with this piece stuck in his fiber!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Alpaca Manure is Great For Your Garden

Alpacas are ruminants having three stomachs, which makes them able to digest their food very efficiently.  You do not have to wait to use alpaca manure in your garden, it won't burn your plants, just spread it over and let the rain soak it in.  The manure has high levels of nitrogen and potassium which makes it a great fertilizer.  It also has low odor and breaks down quickly due to it being low in organic matter.
 Contact Lavender Hill Farm if you're interested it trying alpaca manure in your garden!   

Alpaca manure resembles small beans, similar to goat or deer droppings.

This manure is great for your garden!

We have spread composted alpaca manure over this area of the field.  
You can see it is a dark, rich color.

This year we grew three kinds of tomatoes, eggplant, broccoli, zucchini, pickling 
and salad cucumbers, celery, basil, strawberries, catnip, chives, jalapeno, 
bell, and banana peppers in the garden. The sunflowers come back every year, 
then are replanted in rows in the back.

 This is the first year we had success with broccoli! 

This tomato plant was damaged by tomato hornworms.
  It's amazing how much and how fast they can eat your plants.  
You have to find them and remove them from your plants
 if you want to get any tomatoes.

This is a tomato hornworm.

A mix of fresh veggies.

Another days harvest!

This was the first year we grew celery.  It's small, but tasted great!

We made poppers with the jalapenos from the garden!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

National Alpaca Farm Days 2013

Lavender Hill Farm participated in National Alpaca Farm Days on September 28th and 29th.  Visitors enjoyed perfect weather to come to our farm!  

The shop and barn were open from 10 - 4 both days.  The weather was beautiful!

The shop was open, with apparel, yarn and roving, raw fiber, some stained glass,
 felted ornaments, alpaca photos and rag rugs for sale.  Loose lavender, satchets, and lavender bunches were also for sale. You could enjoy a cup of hot cider along with a piece of homemade pumpkin bread.

This is the entrance to the barn.  The males are on the left and the females are on the right.
  We have 11 males and 10 females.

We hang name signs with photos to help identify an alpaca.

This is the inside of our barn with an informational board on alpacas.

This is Champ, a five year old male that was born at Lavender Hill Farm.

Miko enjoyed this weather as much as we did!

These boys enjoyed getting close to the alpacas.

JJ demonstrated how alpacas only have teeth on the bottom
 in front and have a hard palate on top.

The chickens are really comfortable around the alpacas.  
This one was catching some sun.

The hens layed eggs as usual during their first National Alpaca Farm Days!

Champ seemed to know where his name sign was and stood right behind it, not once, but twice!

Acura enjoyed a dust bath while her daughter, Rose Petal, relaxed.

Mikey is our youngest male (two years old, on left) who JJ was play fighting with.  JJ is an older male
 that has allowed other younger males to play fight with him also, almost as if he's training them for 
when they're bigger.

Mikey was really trying to fight while JJ just went along with it.  It was fun to watch.

Champ enjoyed some hand fed hay by many visitors this weekend.

Mateo is chasing Miko as Thor looks on.

The alpacas had a long weekend full of fun with visitors.  Kimmy and Ember took
 a nap laying like this!  Thanks to everyone who came by to see us at 
Lavender Hill Farm.  It was a great weekend! 

Monday, June 3, 2013

We Have Chickens!

We now have six Rhode Island Red hens at Lavender Hill Farm!  The alpacas were a little unsure about them at first, but now they exist happily together.  They will be a year old this fall and lay around six brown eggs a day.  These hens are very friendly!  When visiting the farm, you'll be sure to see them.

The hens stay busy all day looking for bugs around the farm.

The alpacas seem to enjoy the company of the chickens!