The work Phil did yesterday setting up a “staggered start” on Cae Mari Jones was put to good use today by the participants on the Introductory Scythe Course. With plenty of grass to practice on and Phil on hand to sort out any initial difficulties, everyone was soon mowing well.
After lunch, the course went out to do a bit more mowing, while I baled up some of the hay we bought in last night, with our hand hay baler. This was built using plans from the AgriLIFE website. While we usually use loose stacked hay to feed our sheep and for our spring potato mulching, it is useful to have a few bales around for people who are interested in taking some of the flower seed rich hay to help establish their own meadows, or to feed to small pets. One local Guinea Pig breeder says her pets love our hay, and it is much cheaper then the small bags sold in pet shops.
While the course was enjoying the shade of the barn and a lesson in peening, I went out to spread all the grass they had mown.
This evening we bought in the last of the Saturday hay and rowed up the last remaining hay on the Top Field. The children enjoyed helping using their new “half-pint” sized hay rakes, which a local coppice worker has just made for us. Hopefully some of his adult sized hay rakes will be available on the Social Mow on Sunday.
The hay on Cae Mari Jones was spread late in the day and was still very green. Greener hay is not so vulnerable to damage by dew, so we decided to leave it spread overnight so it can be drying from sun up tomorrow. This hay should be pretty much ready by the Social Mow and Hand Hay Making Day on Sunday. As the weather is continuing to look favourable, we should have hay at several stages of ripeness for people to see.