Creole speak

Those of you familiar with Bob Marley may have heard this one before. Dedicated to politicians everywhere...

Everyday bucket go da well, one day di batam drap out.

Literally: Everyday the bucket goes to the well, one day bottom drops out.

Meaning: The course of events, especially secret misdeeds, seems permanent but eventually there comes a change. This is a well-known British proverb but the version recorded here has a distinctive touch.

From Creole Proverbs of Belize, compiled by Colville Young.

Johnny Pinecone

What Greer takes, Greer gives back. Two years ago we clear cut about 60 acres of our property. Because of the drought we were unable to replant last year. If we had planted we would have lost every single tree. So instead we had to spray herbicide to keep the undergrowth from filling in the empty space. We were finally able to plant on January 8, 2007. 22000 trees. Since then the weather has been perfect (cool & wet), so we hope to have high survival.

Replanting Photo Gallery

Replanting trees does not appear to be that common in this area. I see trees being hauled out every day, but I never see the telltale signs of a replanted area. Most people just take the money and let nature fill in the gap left behind. The difference is that in twenty years we'll have another beautiful pine forest and they'll have an East Texas thicket. That's only an end difference of about $3,000 an acre (without including inflation). Not bad income for the amount of work involved, which essentially consists of lifting the phone and writing checks.

Sure it costs money to plant trees. But you make money when you cut trees. Here is what it cost to plant 22,000 trees.

Site prep - $10,657 (gov't cost share paid $5,328)
Ripping (tearing a trench in rocky soil to plant in, helps collect rainwater) - $1,485 (will request cost share)
Herbicide - $5,828 ((due to drought no gov't share, but they will pay 50% of any additional herbicide work)
Herbicide used: One Step and Oust XP
22000 containerized Loblolly Pine seedlings - $2,696
Planting - $3,850

Grand Total... $24,516, not excluding government cost share. A little more than a dollar a tree. Assuming a 90% survival rate and an average final sale price of around $13.50/tree (without inflation), that ain't bad. Yes, this is paid out over the next 30 years, with the first payment in 10-15 years, but we here at Greer Farm like to take the loooong view of things. These aren't my trees. They're my unborn child's trees.

Pied Piper of Goatville

What do you do when you need to move a herd of goats from one location to another? Well if you're big-time goat "ranchers" like us you don't load them on a trailer... No siree... Instead you take a bucket of feed and any newborn kid (as in baby goat, not your nephew) you can find and lead the followers out of their barren field, across the front yard, and through the rusty gates to goat paradise (aka lush winter pasture). Since our goats had basically been grazing wood chips, and I get tired of feeding animals hay, and since it's kidding time, and since the rye grass was tall enough to start grazing... the goats had to go!

- Our hero leads the goats across the front yard -

- Goats getting down on the good stuff -

- Mama goat licks snooky off baby goat -

- Our hero in an Aw Shucks moment -