Saturday, May 30, 2020

Time To Be Grown: Solve This Problem

When I was a kid no homework made me madder than those problems about  "Johnny leaves on a train going 60 MPH going east and Sally Leaves on a train going..."

Only thing that they ever did for me was to cause me to seek a life with out train riding.

But here is a real problem. it could be an extraordinary learning experience, not just for kids but for the entire family.

Between August 15 and Sept 15 I want to plant our winter pastures. I want to plant a seed mixture that will:

1. provide some green forage throughout  much of the winter.
2. improve the soil by increasing nitrogen fixation
3. provide enough root depth to help fight compaction
4. be hardy enough to take pretty heavy hoof traffic.
5. be affordable.

We will need to seed nearly thirty acres. We will be using no heavy equipment, although we might rent a seed drill for some of the seed.

Now--how much seed should we buy? What kind of seed? Exactly where should we order it from? When will we need to order it by?

Now here will be the hardest part for a lot of people. Do not simply send me the most expensive plan that you can imagine on the assumption that it will be better. It likely will not, but even if it would it does not matter because if we cannot afford it we will not be able to use it.

I want all of the young people in the program to get me a plan by July 1. I hope that you can work on it as a family. Not only will it be great for the program and take a lot of work off of me, your research will help you understand why caring for the health of the soil is the most important that that we can do to care for the health of the horses. Not enough program participants realize this.

I look forward to receiving a plan from everyone in the program between the ages of 11 and 20. Older program participants are invited to submit a plan also.

Don't procrastinate. Don't wait until the last minute to get your plan together. Research. Be skeptical of advertiser's claims. Rely on science.

And do not assume that whatever cost the most is the best.

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