The depths of winter

Here we are entering the middle of August – wild windy days, lots of rain. The place is a bog but bit by bit we’re making progress. We have renovated four rows of the orchard now, basically cutting the rampant old branches back to near the stump in order to replace them with new fruiting wood. The rows have been weeded out to. They look renewed. Basically we are sacrificing their 2014 crop so that these trees will be productive in future years. Next we’ll refresh the southern-most rows of the orchard. They’re not in the same state of neglect as the four rows we’ve just finished on, so Damien plans to be more selective, renewing perhaps a third of the trees – the ones most in need of it. His plan is that aver the following two years the other thirds will likewise be renewed (that is, pruned with a chainsaw).
The horses now have a massive paddock up on top of the hill and we’ve sorted a permanent water solution for them. That’s fantastic. The hill thing is more challenging than I initially thought. We can get up there in the ute under normal circumstances, but recent weeks of heavy rains have turned the ground into a bog so now the ute won’t get us up there.
So – we bought a quad bike! It’s actually a six wheeler with a tray on the back, ex-army so we got us a camouflage finish which the mud is working hard at concealing. It’s a heap of fun, but we’ve discovered the hard way it’s just as easy to flip as a quad. Damo could tell us more about that…. Maybe when his ribs heal.

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