On Wednesday 9th July we ran another full Introductory Scythe Course. It is always interesting to learn about where our course participants have come from and what they intend to use the scythe for. This time it included controlling bracken and brambles, maintaining a permaculture garden and a plan to grow and mow wheat which will be used for sourdough bread making.
Since Wednesday we have been working with the grass that was cut on the course. The grass was left to wilt in the windrows for the remainder of Wednesday then it was spread on Thursday morning. It was rowed up Thursday evening then Phil spread and turned the grass again yesterday. The grass had cured a lot, but was no where near dry enough to bring into the barn. So yesterday evening Phil and I put it up on to racks as it was forecast to be wet today, which indeed it has been with a persistent wet drizzle for a good part of the day.
The hay that was nearest the hedge was damper then that further out into the field, as it is in the shade for more of the day. We built the racks in a line down the mown area, away from the hedge to avoid excess shading. We used the driest hay to build the bottom layers of each rack, where it will be most protected, then built the upper layers with hay pulled out from towards the hedge line. All the hay will continue to cure on the racks and the heavier, damper hay on the top forms a better “hat”. Five racks were built in all.
We have a Social Mowing event here on Sunday, so there will be plenty more grass cut. With an unsettled forecast, I expect we will be building many more racks over the coming days.