Small Farm Makeover: 10 Tips to Keep Flying Pests at Bay – Naturally!

10 Tips
Swallow box with nesting Violet Green Swallows. Photo Courtesy Alayne Blickle.

Biting Insects Can Lead to Serious Health Problems in Horses and Humans Ahh, summer… the long days, the sun and warmth. The season is wonderful in so many ways, except when it comes to those annoying bugs. Flies, gnats, and mosquitoes can make our horses’ lives miserable (ours too), and …

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Small Farm Makeover: Free and Natural Insect Control

Natural Insect Control
Image Courtesy Alayne Blickle.

Free and Natural Insect Control One of my favorite times of year is the March/April time frame when swallows begin returning to the Pacific Northwest. These vivacious little birds overwinter in Central America and return to North America in time for the spring nesting season.  These pretty little birds provide …

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Small Farm Makeover: Winter Preparedness on Horse Properties – Part 2 of 2

Winter Preparedness
Photo Courtesy Alayne Blickle

Take Winter by Storm! The dead of winter and early spring are times for damaging, dangerous storms in North America. Making chore efficiency updates on your horse property and having backup supplies on hand is helpful for getting through the most challenging time of the year for horse owners–and it …

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Feature Story: Winter Preparedness on Horse Properties – Part 1 of 2

Winter
Regular manure removal is critical in winter. Photo Courtesy Alayne Blickle.

Fall Chore Efficiency Farmers and ranchers know the drill well—they use late summer and early fall to do their prep work for winter. Horse owners can take notes from our older and bigger cousins and do the same, as fall is the right time to get things done! Cooler temperatures …

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Small Farm Makeover: Spring Cleaning Tips

Early spring is a good time to hang nest boxes. Photo Courtesy Alayne Blickle

Get Ready for the Busy Season Ahead! Earth Day is just around the corner on Saturday, April 20, 2023. In some parts of the country, daffodils are poking their heads up and may even be blooming. That means now is the time to get things done around your horse property …

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Small Farm Makeover: Composting Horse Manure-Simplified!

Composting Horse Manure
Photo from Alayne Blickle

Correctly Managing Manure Doesn’t Need to be Difficult or Expensive There are many reasons why a mismanaged manure pile is a problem—from chore inefficiency to horse health issues (horses allowed to graze near their own manure are quickly reinfested by larva that hatch from worm eggs shed in manure), to …

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Small Farm Makeover: Create a Winter Paddock

winter paddock
Photo by Alayne Blickle

Considerations for Building and Locating a Sacrifice Area on Your Farm Probably the most important aspect of managing pastures is the time when you take your horses off your pasture. You can greatly improve the health and productivity of your pastures by creating and using a winter paddock or confinement …

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Fencing Considerations for Horse Properties – Focus on Safety, Appearance, Chore Efficiency, and Budget when Planning Fencing Projects

Photos from Alayne Blickle.

Horse owners agree that a well-fenced property is a beautiful sight and the cornerstone to proper management. When building or modifying a horse property, a primary consideration is what type of fencing to choose, and many great options are available. Here are a few guidelines to help you make a …

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Hog Fuel, Gravel, or Sand? Winter Footing Options for Equine Confinement Areas

One advantage of sand is that horses love to lie down and roll on it. Photo by Alayne Blickle.

The dead of winter usually comes with footing challenges for horse owners. It’s unhealthy for horses to stand in disease-causing muck and it’s difficult to get chores done when pushing a manure cart through ankle-deep mud. Plus, there are detrimental implications for the natural world around us since dirty water …

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Pre-freeze Planting on Horse Properties – Native Plants Benefit Everyone on the Farm

Red flowering currant works well in hedgerows

Fall in the Pacific Northwest (before the ground freezes) is an ideal time to plant all kinds of things— cool-season veggies, pasture grasses, perennials and both evergreen and deciduous trees and shrubs. Of all these, native plants can be of particular importance on a horse property. Humans, horses, wildlife, and …

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