Friday, June 25, 2010

Manure and Farm Keeping Recognition

We strive for excellence in farm and manure management.
We pick our paddocks every other day, at least.
We use straw bedding to break down faster.
We turn our manure.
We cover our manure with special covers to keep the right level of moisture and let it breathe.
We take the temperature of our manure to make sure it is decomposing and killing bacteria and fly larvae.
We rotate our grass paddocks.
We have sacrifice paddocks.
We are solar.
We collect rain water off the roof and filter it and use it for drinking water.
We sweat a lot and go through a lot of pairs of gloves, this is a lot of hard work.

Well, lucky us:  the state of Connecticut recognizes farms like ours with an award!!!

I took three inspectors on tour.  One from the DEP, one from UConn, one from some water awareness soemthingorother.  They apparently liked the place and today I was presented with our award!!

You can apply for this award every year, which we will be doing.

It is an awesome program.  They will come out to your farm, recognize good practices, and make recommendations if they see things that they don't like.  If they really like your practices, they give you an award.  It is a great support for us to be able to call and ask questions, find out things or check to see if we are doing things correctly. And we are.  YAY!!!


Here is the "turning bin".  The freshest stuff goes here, gets covered, then moved and turned to another bin.
Steaming...

170*  Nice and hot.  This means that any bad stuff is killed.

We take out a scoop... steamy... like a smelly sauna.
Mmmmm... look at all that composting goodness.

This is me moving some of the stuff from one of the other bins and putting it on a windrow where it is covered and will wait for us to spread.  It is a nice fluffy compost.  Apparently that is very good.

Me on top of the windrow shaping it. 
We like a certain shape and uniformity to our windrows.
OK, I don't care so much, but Mr. Java's Mom is particular.


And finally:
Being presented with our award. 
It's the Horse Farm of Environmental Distinction award, which is part of the Horse Environmental Awareness Program, or HEAP program..  Get it HEAP.  catchy.
That's me on the left and Carol Donzella on the right who is head of the heap program.
This is exciting and really an honor.  Thank you!!!

4 comments:

Kate said...

Impressive that your state has an award - congratulations!

the7msn said...

That's terrific! You're totally deserving of the recognition for all the thought and effort you've put into designing and managing your farm. Great to know that scooping poop has its just rewards.

Melissa-ParadigmFarms said...

Congratulations!

Terry said...

That's really cool!