Posts Tagged ‘alpacas’

Don’t Panic

Hedgerow at Hayefield March 2012

Though I start every new garden project with the same sense of enthusiasm, each one seems to end up with a different theme, depending on how it progresses. I still think of the big border out front as the “I’m Going to Die Border” (it was really hot the week I dug and planted it), and beds in The Shrubbery, which involved a whole lot of quality time with a manual sod cutter, as the “It Seemed Like a Good Idea at The Time Project.” This year, the mild weather allowed for an extra-early start on outdoor work, so I finally decided to tackle a project I’ve been putting off: removing the invasive vines and woody plants from the hedgerow out back. Continue reading

Guest Posting, with Bonus Alpacas

2004_1117Image0005Two bits of Hayefield news today. First, I’m guest-blogging over at At Home in the Garden; if you have a few minutes, come check it out. And second, Daniel and Duncan finally have their own page here, at About the Alpacas. They figure that with other alpacas getting their shot at stardom in commercials and on late-night television, it’s their turn to act as ambassadors of alpacadom. At least they haven’t asked to have their own blog – yet.

Hayefield Happenings

Hayefield House from orchard path June 8 08

Text and photos ©Nancy J. Ondra

Wow, I can’t believe how fast the weeks are passing. So much for the days of blogging every day or two! Besides the usual busy-ness of this time of year in my own garden, I’ve been working every other day at a friend’s nursery/garden center for the past month, installing and maintaining some huge new gardens, so I’ve been gloriously immersed in extended hours of hands-on gardening every single day.

In many ways, it brings back the days when I used to be a professional gardener. I enjoyed it then, but I remember it being pretty tough physically. Getting back into it 20 years later, I find it’s actually easier now, maybe because I have a lot more experience, and a good selection of time-tested tools as well. Still, dealing with the intense heat we’re experiencing now in PA is tough at any age, so I’m grateful to be indoors for today. Continue reading

Shearing Madness

Duncan in November 06

With temperatures in the 70s and 80s in southeastern Pennsylvania this week, gardening has to take second place to a more critical spring ritual here at Hayefield: freeing “the boys” from their year’s worth of heavy fleece so they don’t pass out from the heat. It’s rather early this year: Last year, my notes say, I didn’t start until May 7. There’s always the worry that the weather might turn cold again, and once the fleece is off, you can’t very well stick it back on. It doesn’t look like cold, rainy weather is very likely any more, though, so we have to take our chances. Continue reading

Are Alpacas the Answer?

Duncan and Daniel

Text and photo ©Nancy J. Ondra

“What made you decide to get alpacas?”, people ask me. Well, the fleece has some value, if you can find someone who wants it, and they’re fun to watch and hang around with. Plus, the endless supply of manure is invaluable for the garden. But apparently that’ not all they’re good for! Check out this link from The Onion: “Congress to Raise Alpacas to Aid Struggling Economy.” If only I’d gotten a boy and a girl, instead of two boys. (But no, I wouldn’t give up either Daniel or Duncan to get a girl instead.)

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