Farmer Zippy's Notebook: Straw Garden

Zippy, translated by Hannah
Tuesday, June 17, 2014

We worked hard today. Really hard.

When we planted the tomatoes a few weeks ago, we put down rows of plastic in the field. The plastic keeps the weeds from growing around the plants, and it helps protect their roots. But we only put the plastic down where we planted tomatoes, which means that the paths between the rows where the farmers walk are empty, and even though they get walked on a lot by work boots and little sheep feet, weeds can still grow there. Which means that we have to cover it up with straw to keep the weeds from getting enormous.

So this morning, Ike’s farmer neighbor brought us . . . guess how many? Three hundred bales of straw. Three hundred. Which meant that there was lots of work to do.

First we had to haul all of the straw bales off the wagons and out to the field (some of the farm helpers can really move them!). Then we had to cut them apart and lay the straw all down along the rows between the plastic. Farmer Ike showed us how to do it. He said that we should take the straw out in leaves (did you know straw came in leaves? I didn’t!) and lay them out one at a time on the rows, because the leaves come in just the right thickness. I think it’s amazing that they fit perfectly between the rows of plastic. They’re just the right width . . . it’s like they were made for it!

The straw was really itchy to work with, and it scratched my legs, but it smelled really good! I’m still finding straw caught in my wool, and in between the soles of my hooves!

It looks nice, with all the straw spread out in the field. And it’s nice that the field won’t be a muddy mess anymore, the way it was last time it rained. And no more weeds!

But we really did work hard today. I am now one tired sheep. I think I might lay down in all this yummy straw and take a nap . . .