Sunday, March 23, 2014

The "fruit's of his labors - - -

Most of the time you think of "harvest" on the farm as being in the fall.  Not so with sheep - your harvest is the fleece, that comes in the spring with the shearing.  The "crop" you have worked on all year - keeping good nutrition, TRYING to keep them clean, etc.

Elliott's fleece is fluffy and soft, and comparatively clean, in regards to what he's been up to lately -

 As you can see, he's taken a little dislike to the "ramada" on his little barn.  None of the other rams we have ever had have bothered it - they seemed to realize it kept the rain and the heat of the day off  of them - but this little  stinker banged on the 4" support post until he broke it, then proceeded to run and jump up at the roof - further deteriorating the particle board that was under the shingles - covering his fleece with it.  Luckily, while The Shepherd was waiting for the shearer to arrive  a few weeks ago, he had some one on one time with Elliott and was able to pick a lot of that crap out of his fleece prior to shearing. 

This is a sample of Vanessa's fleece - it will  wash up a real pretty honey color, I'm sure.

Another sample of Elliott on the left, with Donna on the right - Donna's fleece has really lightened up this year.  It has nice crimp to it though.

This is the sample that really made me swoon - which I was already doing from the lovely smell of the fresh fleece and the grease from the lanolin on my hands - This is Sandy's fleece - look at those crimpy locks.

The ends are kind of sticky with the dirt/lanolin "gunk" that gets out at the tips of her fleece and The Shepherd was going to take a pair of scissors to it and cut off those ends.

"Wait a minute!" I said - "let me try washing out a bit of it!"

Here is part of her fleece after a little soak in a "hot tub" of hot hot water and wool wash.

Oh, yeah -baby - look at that - and you should feel it.  I think any spinner would love to get his or her hands on this fleece, don't you? 

Here's a close up of the washed locks -

Very nice. 

And of course, an obligatory Kitteh picture of George, that I managed to nab while he was out tearing up the nursery the other day. 

Speaking of Cats - A "sweet 16" side note - The Shepherd was beside himself this evening - do you root for your "home team" - in this case the Arizona Wildcats - from his home town of Tucson, or for the "home team" - the Gonzaga Zags - the local team from Spokane.  I think he ended up rooting for his Wildercats - they won pretty handily.   Go Wildcats! 


Katnip Lounge said...

I want to buy some yarn from those wonderful sheep! I see a colorful winter cowl in my future...

Lilylou said...

I enjoy learning about fleece (real fleece, not the poly kind) from you, Tina!

Michelle said...

Our shearer comes Wednesday morning, but I rooed Annabelle yesterday. I really need to check and see if any others are roo-able, but haven't had time!

Anonymous said...

Your wool looks beautiful as always! Our shearer comes on Friday. The I will have a lot of wool to play with!

Leigh said...

Ooo, what a yummy harvest! You will have some wonderful dyeing, spinning, and creating this year.

Funny you should mention that about home teams. I've always wondered the same thing, ;)