Category: Blogging

Cutting, Splitting and Stacking Wood

Cutting, Splitting and Stacking Wood

Winter offers those on the homestead an opportunity to cut wood. As you may know, we are slowly clearing off the land we plan to farm this spring. This is giving us plenty of free firewood. We are cutting, splitting, and stacking the wood so it will be seasoned when we need it next winter.

We have cut down many of the large trees but there are many little ones that still need our attention. We are cutting them down and grubbing up the stumps with our trusty tractor.

My son is notching the tree on one side so he can drop it in the direction he wants it to go.

Do you notice how the land is beginning to look? Many of the fields are almost ready for plowing.

Once the tree is cut, all the limbs need to be removed.

When those are removed the tree will be cut into rounds waiting to be split. This is my husband preparing this tree he just cut down.

Here is my son splitting and stacking the wood.

Handy Tools For Cutting and Splitting Wood By Hand

Chainsaw

I know it’s possible to use a crosscut saw but a chainsaw makes the work much easier.

Wood Splitting Maul

A maul looks very similar to an axe, but the edge is fatter and blunter. It’s more like a wedge with a handle. More about using this tool.

Splitting Wedges

Having a few wedges is a good idea. Tough, gnarly wood will require the use of these.

Log splitters

Log splitter is a good idea if you want to make this process more easier. More about this tool here.

Sledgehammer

A sledgehammer is needed to drive the wedges into the wood.

Chopping Block

A chopping block is simply another round of wood that is used to place the wood being chopped onto. It’s not really needed but it does make things a little easier.

Please be cautious when cutting or splitting wood. Accidents can and often do happen.

How is your wood splitting going this winter?

New Spring Piglets and Buying Tips

We purchase spring piglets every year to raise for pork. We recently bought a few to add to our barnyard.

They are a Yorkshire, Spot, and Landrace mix. All these breeds are known for their exceptional meat production.

These piglets were exhausted from a long ride home.

They were not too tired to explore their new home.

Raising a pig is a wonderful experience. I like knowing my animals are raised humanely and eating a healthy diet. Many people think pigs are just nasty, smelly animals; but that could not be more untrue. If their pens are kept reasonably clean the smell is minimal. They are also intelligent animals, and each has its own personality.

We have plans to raise our own pigs in the future, but for now we buy. Here is what I look for when buying my piglets. It’s really common sense tips, but I thought I would share.

1.  Healthy and lively. When I watch piglets I want the ones who are running around and playing. I do not want a pig that is coughing, lethargic, or excessively scratching.

2.  Long and well muscled. These type of pigs tend to grow the fastest; producing the most meat.

3.  I buy barrows, which are castrated males, because they tend to have better meat to feed ratios.

4.  Unusual growths. If I see something that looks unusual on a piglet, I don’t buy.  

Do you have any other piglet buying tips that you would like to add? Do you raise pigs or are thinking about it in the future?

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