We moved to our 15 acre farm at the end of August. The month before the move, we were busy procuring what we needed to set up our own housekeeping (the Granada rental was completely furnished). We had fun working with a local metal shop to design and make grillwork for our windows and doors. Granada is full of beautiful ironwork so there were lots of examples to choose from.
Since July we have had two teams rebuilding our fence. The perimeter is .75 miles so it was no small task; this past Saturday was the day they closed the loop. It is a “living fence”, the branches are cut from certain types of trees (on our property) known to grow roots and become living posts. Once established they will not rot. To keep animals out, or in, we are repairing the barbed wire and adding new strands. As soon as the wire on the front side was complete, the neighbors’ pigs stopped coming in. We are also reinforcing a line of pinuelas, a cactus-type “hostile” plant with barbs that you do not want to get hung up on. To achieve the coverage we wanted, we purchased plants from neighboring farms that our guys dug up and had delivered with a horse cart. Once the front line was planted as densely as possible, the neighbors’ chickens stopped coming through (except for one very persistent one that Gerard is having fun chasing off). We also have a clean wide path now all the way around that we can use for walks and runs.
Three weeks ago, we got a female Rottweiler puppy, Dulci. Gerard and I have never had a dog together so it is a new, fun parental experience for us. Rotties are described as devoted, good natured, alert, obedient, calm, confident, fearless and they make excellent guard dogs and family pets. She is going to be very big, 100+ lbs and she is growing, literally, before our eyes. I think she has doubled in size since we brought her home. She is so smart and eager to please, learning new puppy tricks every day. We love her and so does everyone else who works here. I now get what all the fuss is about in having a dog!
It is great living here, so much cooler and quieter than Granada. With rainy season finally kicking in, everything has turned green. It rains every two or three days for less than an hour, usually toward the end of the day. Close to the house we have seen toucans, parrots and other colorful birds in our trees, and iguanas and frogs on the grounds. Our guys are clearing brush and we are thrilled to discover numerous fruit trees of many interesting varieties and 100+ coffee plants. We intend to bring these mature trees back to their productive best. We are pruning and using the fallen leaves and sticks from this and all the clearing as mulch (no organic matter goes wasted) and will soon add manure from the farm next door.
Our first three weeks were with very limited wifi but now we have a seventy foot tower that transmits a good signal. Gerard spent mucho time on this, assessing the options and choosing the best one to meet our longterm needs.
We are excited to welcome our first volunteers. Brett and Nathan will be back after Thanksgiving, two of their friends in January and my sister in law, Laurie and nephew Adam in February. We are getting ready for them!