December 08, 2022

From the Pastures: Spring coming soon

March is always an up and down month for weather. Nice one day and then cold and snowy the next. I am choosing to be positive and know it will not be long until spring. March is a good time to plan for projects when the weather turns nice. This spring, my pasture needs to be fertilized. I have started talking to some local suppliers about the best fertilizer to use with the big spike in prices. I will be out of hay this year and need to get at least one good cutting. Last year, the pasture growth was slow, mostly due to the amount of rain. The fertilizer should help if there is a moisture issue this year also.

The mill participated in an online sales event in February. A lot of people from across the country watched and were very complimentary of the fiber I had for sale. I dyed wool with light blue, light green, yellow and a light purple. Then I carded the green with a little yellow and the blue with a little purple. My thought was bright spring colors. They were very popular and I needed to make more. I am very grateful for all the interest in the wool from our farm. If you have not tried dying your wool, it is a lot of fun to use your imagination and see what turns out.

Illinois Lamb & Wool Producers is planning an educational meeting beginning at 9 a.m. on Saturday, March 19. The meeting will be held at the University of Illinois-Champaign in Room 131 of the Animal Sciences building. Speakers from the U of I, Illinois State University and Illinois Department of Agriculture will share information on sheep topics.

The annual meeting is an excellent opportunity to see your fellow shepherds, catch up with those outside your local area, gain practical information and share insights to support your successful lamb and wool production. For more information, send an email to Carol Lingley at

Jane Zeien

Jane Zeien

Belvidere, Ill.