With the onrush of Christmas and the last few markets of the year to manage it is clear another year is about done.
2017 has been an interesting year, with great variability in both weather, people and projects and a salutary reminder that change is a constant. Nothing sits still. From the deluge of rain during winter/spring 2016, when the farm looked at times like a rice paddy, 2017 flipped and then entered a long extended drying out period reinforced by one of the driest and frostiest winters we have seen. It was looking like summer was to arrive early and all growth would be gone by early October.
We were beginning to batten down the hatches in expectation of extended low rainfall, selling off excess cattle early and reducing our grazing numbers. And then the rain returned, the grass responded and early summer turned into spring. Which is a beautiful reminder how in farming we dance to the elements and they circumscribe all we do.
2017 also saw some long planned projects come to fruition.
Due to the increasing and sustained pressure of kangaroos from neighbouring land we made the reluctant decision to erect a solar powered electric fence on our northern boundary to help us manage the kangaroo numbers and their grazing pressure. This has proved to be successful, in the sense that it has allowed us to reduce the overgrazing that was occuring and to restore ground cover. The broader issue of kangaroos and their place in rural landscapes that are largely dysfunctional ecologies has of course not been resolved. Our society still has a long way to go on this issue.
On the marketing front 2017 has seen the redevelopment of our branding from our logo to the new website. This is all aimed at making contact with Boxgum Grazing easier for our customers and heralds a new direction in our marketing which will be further developed in 2018 to include an online shop platform. We are excited by the possibilities.
Lastly we would like to thank all our customers whose support makes it possible for us to do what we do here at Boxgum Grazing. Without you our vision of a regenerative agriculture & consumer alliance would not exist.
I will finish with a poem that distills what drives us as farmers and gets us out of bed each day.
Poetry of Farming
each day is an amalgam
the way the light comes over the hills, through the trees across the valley
we take part in this dance of the elements
the animals rocks grass and trees
the daily tasks seem to stretch out in front as tasks to begrudge on occasions
to savour on others
and always under behind overhead us is this beautiful vital world of life
that moves independent of us
that has gone on before us for time unimaginable
and will stretch on into the future when we have vanished like a breath
what is our purpose in these few short years
if not to take part in this vitality
to not diminish it
to give possibility to more futures
to nurture the capacity for abundance
to allow life to thrive in concert with our world