News

Celia's email, containing snippets of farm news, have become infamous and are included here. Updated fortnightly - follow the events at Penrhiw and Cefn Coed / Fforest - good and bad ...

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John and Celia Thomas

Latest News

Hello.   Not sure what happened 2 weeks ago but you didn't get a farm / market update  ...... thought I'd better get in early this week.   Winter seems to have crept up on us all  -  the cows have come in and are sleeping in the sheds and eating precious hay which is eked out with good quality barley straw.  The tups are out with the ewes - there is plenty of activity so we should be really busy during the first week of April.   Autumn calving is underway (Bendy bus has just had a boy calf this year)  -  Graham and Ffi  are diligently watching 4 lovely first time heifers but they seem to be in no hurry !  Pig feeding has become a muddy chore again with a huge risk of being upended by boisterous pigs.  

Markets this weekend  -  the usual Rhiwbina and Riverside in Cardiff with Usk and St Fagans on Saturday; Porthcawl next Saturday (24th).   I am taking orders for Christmas but I am not dwelling on that for a few weeks yet !!   I have the builders in the meat preparation shed carrying out a few essential repairs  - that's enough stress for a while  .......

Hello

I'll start with market news this week, in particular, Riverside.  I can't believe we have been going down to Cardiff on a Sunday morning for 20 years.  I can remember the first one in a small marquee in Dispenser Gardens - we were more than a tad apprehensive, nervous and, in those days, very shy - country bumpkins going to the big city !!  How things have progressed over the years - there are lots of tales to tell - some good and a few hairy ones.  What is amazing is that we are still coming - we have some incredibly loyal customers and made lots of friends.  I can say exactly the same about Usk - we started going to the 2 markets at the same time.  There are celebrations planned for Usk too.  Long may both continue .....

The farm is WET but not like some poor souls in West Wales.  Cows are still out thank goodness  and are still eating grass without making too much mess.  Cefn Coed cows are enjoying some rape -  a welcome late season feed.  The longer we can postpone feeding precious hay and silage the better.

Celia

Hello

Where has the time gone.  No email for ages it seems.  Lots has been happening - the weather has helped at last !   Harvest all finished - haylage made (that was hoped for but we wondered if it would actually happen -  goes some way to helping with the winter fodder reserves); all winter crops sown - turnips for the sheep, some grass leys for the spring;  pigs turned onto the wheat stubble; sheep sorted for the sales and sold; ram sale this Friday - big day out for the boys ! (we are not holding out for too much here - our yearling rams are not the best).   All we want now is for the good weather to continue to allow us to graze all the autumn grass - this again will help shorten the period we have to feed our precious hay to the cows.

Busy market weekend coming up  -  Rhiwbina on Friday, Usk and Tonteg on Saturday with Riverside on Sunday - ½ Marathon will impact on Sunday but we will be there.

Celia

hello from a wet and windy Penrhiw - yes it's still raining and the grass is growing again.  Penrhiw is not so desert like now - I will put some photos on the facebook page to show what a difference 2 weeks makes.

We have all been busy on the sunny days  -  the peas and barley have been combined on Fforest and some of the straw baled; rape and Italian ryegrass have been sown at Penrhiw and Fforest for some winter grazing and Graham is out late tonight ploughing the barley stubble ready for turnips.  We are going to need all the help we can this coming winter to eke out the hay and silage.  The flip side is it is too wet to combine the oats which are ripe and ready and bale the rest of the straw.  Hopefully we will get a window next week - no hope in the forecast for the next few days.....
Markets this weekend  - Rhiwbina on Fridays and Riverside on Sundays, Usk on Saturday and Porthcawl next Sat 25th
Hope to see you

Hello

Well we have had some rain which has made a HUGE difference to the colour of the fields at Penrhiw.  There are hints of green in the Sahara Desert "esque" fields.  Let's hope everything keeps growing and there is more rain to come.  The flip side was the Gelligaer Horse show which we host on the farm every year  -  we had no option but to postpone until September. 

We have had to wean the lambs early - they are grazing the fields where we had hoped to take a second cut of silage.  the ewes were finding it hard work to milk for the lambs and hold body and soul together with no fresh green grass.  They are now eating hay whilst we wait for the grass to grow.   The cows are mumping but, as we promised them when they went into last fields of grass 2 weeks ago, things were going to get tough.  They have enough to fill their bellies but not quite the quality they are used.     

Markets this weekend:  Usk and Tonteg on Sat, Rhiwbina on Friday and Riverside on Sunday.

Penrhiw

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