Do livestock and native flowers mix well?

Yes, they do.  Most of California’s native flowers evolved with grazing animals and they rely on animals to till, fertilize, and weed their seedbeds. With the introduction of non-native annuals and the reduction of grazing animals, our native flowers start to decrease in numbers. Confusing cause and effect, many people feel that livestock hurt the flower population. Here at the ranch, we show that the opposite is true. Grazing livestock help increase the flower population.

One of the rarer flowers around is the Adobe Lily (fritllaria pluriflora). Well, rare other places than on our ranch. Watch the video to see how many Adobe lily’s we grow.


A present that only a rancher would like

I will admit it, I am a bit of a grouchy when it comes to birthdays. I just don’t see the point in them, so you have lived 365 days, so what? The sun still comes up and the stuff still needs to get done. But every now and then, the whole celebrate one’s natal day thing turns out OK. This year was one such year. Yesterday, I got some Muckboots and that was just about as good as a present one can get. I immediately put them to good use (see below).

Nothing like feeding pigs in mud to test out a new pair of muck boots. These passed with flying colors.

All hail hail

Spring is an interesting weather season. You never quite know what you are going to get. This morning was a prime example. I got my trusty Droid all fired up and recorded the two extremes.

First, the hail:

Then, 15 minutes after the video, I took this still shot.

Hail, what hail?

Then about two minutes after this shot, the clouds went away and now the sun is blazing!