March 15, 2012:  This weather has just been awesome!  Yet, it has been the most challenging and thought provoking spring I ever can recall.  This continuous warm and sunny weather is such a "teaser" - you just want to get out there in the fields and plant, plant, plant and yet you just know that this is much too early for cropping.  Cold wet weather is still to come before it actually is time to get out there and get some serious planting done. 

  My dad who will be 88 years old this summer keeps mentioning that this spring reminds him of the year of 1945.  The weather that spring was also unseasonably warm and dry so they planted their crops anyways and were all finished by April 14 of that year.  In those days they usually planted oats, barley, mixed grain, and corn.  Well on the evening of the 14th, the weather changed!   Cold and rainy weather greeted them for the next month and by the time the soil had dried out again the weeds had taken over and most of the crops they had planted had either rotted in the fields or were stunted.  He had only one good field of grain that year and that was a field that was so bad, he had ripped it up on the first day of June and replanted it.   So, is this spring a real true and honest early season where we are given a 2 month extention on our growing season or is this year like 1945?  No need to go to Casino Rama to get our gambling fix; we can get it right here on the farm.   That being said we have worked up a little of the gardens and planted our safe and early veggies: peas, radishes, spinach, swiss chard, and salad turnip.  They are very cold hardy plants that can withstand any miserable weather that might come along.   We have been seeding trays in the greenhouse this last few weeks, and are beginning to run out of room for the trays.  Most of the seeds we have been planting in the trays will be either transplanted into our third greenhouse next month or will be transplanted outside when we are sure the frost scare is over.   Speaking of the third greenhouse; we are in the midst of building it.  The base was finished this week, and the greenhouse arches will be delivered today so hopefully we will begin to put them up next week.  The most difficult part in bulding a greenhouse in my opinion is putting up the base.  It has to be level and square, and it seems to take forever to get that accomplished.  Once the base is done, the arches go up and it actually looks like we have done something!   March is the time for our newborn spring calves to arrive.   Last week was the first one of the season - mom and calf are doing very well.  Mom was new at this and wasn't really sure about this wet and furry little creature.  It had caused her alot of discomfort and what was he really doing when he was trying to nurse her for the first time?.  Once he was able to get his first drink, everything was fine, and now I have noticed mom at least once chasing our farm dog Lily out of the barnyard when she was getting too close to her baby.  This day in 1916:  "Dad helped ma wash.  Gordon went to New Lowell with 10 bags of barley to chop.  We shipped a can of cream today.  The old black cow had a calf,  We are milking 10 cows now. (all by hand I might add).  Ken and Ellwood loaded up 2 loads of wheat and took them away.  Harry started working at the Basket Factory in Minesing at $1.70 per day.  

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Close By Barrie & Collingwood:

2904 Rainbow Valley Road
Minesing, Ontario
(close to Barrie and Collingwood)

Thank you for the wonderful stay in your guesthouse.  We had a great time.  You have a beautiful farm and we really enjoyed the animals, especially the kittens.  We will make sure we tell all our friends about your great B&B!

Jack and Barb, Waterdown, ON