Sunday, April 10, 2011
Fencing is one of, if not the, biggest expense in setting up a farm. Our farm already has 4-board wood fencing around part of the perimeter which is great but its really meant for horses and probably isn't enough for sheep and pigs. And the rest of the fencing is woven wire. Which might be perfect but unfortunately we didn't pay close attention to it and can't remember what the spacing on the wire fencing is. Hopefully the wire fencing is in good shape -- if so then we won't have to spend thousands of dollars on fencing, yippee! We won't be able to inspect the fencing ourselves until we go up for closing on the 22nd, but assuming its in good shape all we'll need to add is woven wire to the front line of fencing, since its the wood board type. Then we'll need install electric net fencing to divide the pasture in half. This is so that the sheep can eat the grass down in one part while new grass is growing in the other part. We may be able to wait until next summer to install this fencing, though, since this summer we'll only have 3 sheep and so they won't eat the grass down as much.
Then we'll need some electric fencing to separate the pigs from the sheep. Pigs don't require much fencing because they have short stubby legs and aren't good at climbing or jumping, BUT sheep really like to eat pig grain and it makes them sick, so we have to keep them separate with 36" electric netting.
Since we haven't found the perfect pigs yet and since they will require additional fencing, which is an extra expense, we may start with the sheep and get them settled before adding the pigs to the mix.
We have graduation, a wedding and two festivals in May so we will be driving back and forth between KY and NC all month but will finally be done and ready to spend all our time on the farm after the Carolina Fiber Fest at the end of May, so hopefully we can pick up our sheep that week. Now we just need to figure out how to get the sheep from NC to KY since we don't own a livestock trailer!!!