"Self-sufficiency does not mean 'going back' to the acceptance of a lower standard of living. On the contrary, it is the striving for a higher standard of living, for food that is organically grown and good, for the good life in pleasant surroundings... and for the satisfaction that comes from doing difficult and intricate jobs well and successfully." John Seymour ~ Self Sufficiency 2003

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Manna from Heaven required...

A widening chasm was developing where the
water enters the dam
After a 35mm downpour in November our dam entrance gully took a hammering.  When RMan plowed the fodder fields in order to remove the weeds a whole bunch of stones were exposed, so those have been used to fill in / support the ever widening / deepening gully. 
Stones / rocks will hopefully prevent the chasm
getting any worse...
All we need now is some rain to fill the dam again.

Some serious praying and rain dancing needs to take place.  The water situation here is quite dire.

Our 7 X 5 000lt rain water tanks are completely empty...
 our dam...
That looks like the bentonite layer peeping
through on the lower left hand edge of the
... is at it's lowest level since we added the bentonite to it.  We calculate that perhaps only 2 - 3 feet of water remains.  Not more than that.
The leaves of the trees are all curling
 up in an effort to try and conserve water
... the leaves of the trees, in self-preservation mode, are closing...

...and the local rivers and streams are drying up...
This weed inside
the duck enclosure
(under a shadecloth
"roof") is not a happy
 ... and even the weeds are wilting.

We are desperate for some manna from heaven.
Our weather report for the next 9 days
Today (Saturday 24th January) the temperature outside is a stinking, claustrophobic and stifflingly hot 37oC (+/- 99oF) and there is no rain predicted for the next 9 days.

Taking into account that our rainfall for the past winter and summer months was, and is, well below average, I am very grateful that we are not having to financially support ourselves on what we grow as other (commercial) farmers have to.

Thankfully, our municipal supplied water is keeping our summer veggies alive.

Just.  (I shudder to think what our water bill is going to be this month...)  I have to store up whatever I can harvest to get us through the upcoming winter.
My strawberries have taken some serious
Figuring that the oats for the alpacas was more important, we allocated the mulch to the fields and fruit trees, and we're letting everything else battle on on their own...

The rain is critical to planting, and successfully growing the oats for the alpaca fodder.

So - anyone care for a dance...?


  1. I pray that you'll see some rain in the near future.

  2. So much here and not enough there. I will hope that some of this makes its way there!

  3. I hope you'll see some rain soon, Dani.

    1. Quinn - 40 - 50mm would be a gift from heaven...

  4. That looks pretty dry. I guess no matter how many tanks you have you run them dry whenyou hhave such a long dry spell. Any way you could increase your storage for the future? But I guess space and costs are such an issue as well as installation.

    1. Kev - You're correct. But first one has to have the rain to fill the tanks!

      I reckon that if we had double the amount of tanks (14 X 5 000lt = 70 000 lt or 18 500 gallons) we'd be more or less OK - but that wouldn't include water for the alpaca fodder.

  5. Nope its tough Dani we suffering too, its safe to say that we are in a drought situation .....Pray :0

    1. Dire straits guys, dire straits. Yup, am praying...

  6. I sympathize with you. Georgia had a bad drought 11 years ago, and people still remember it with dread. In the American South West, the drought has lasted for several years and the huge reservoirs there are going empty. I sure hope you get some rain.

    1. Harry - We're sweltering here again today - unbearable.

      Still no rain on the forecast... :(

  7. I can't imagine what this must be like for you :{ I hope you will be able to work out more storage for future years, but I know that comes at a price.

    No rain = crops don't grow so well = less feed harvested & stored for the animals overwinter = big bills because you have to buy more.

    I wish you could have some of our surplus rain, I don't keep accurate records anymore but we've definitely got more than enough up here :}

    1. Jayne - You've hit it spot on.

      Yeah - I wish we could have some of your rain too.

  8. I must be pretty good at rain dances because we get an awful lot of rain here! I'll do one for you xx That heat must be unbearable.

    1. Chickpea - Yup, the heat is definitely making me wilt - big time...

      Thanks - prayers and dances very welcome :)

  9. I would do a rain dance but knowing my luck it would try and rain here and then it would snow instead as it is cold today.

    Beaming you RAIN thoughts

    1. Sol - LOL - with all that beaming perhaps I should rename you Captain Kirk.

      Oh, for some COLD weather...


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