now on Instagram

Redleaf Farm is now on instagram.

I can do it from my phone, rather than wait til I’m in the office, so click on the link to follow for more regular updates on #farmlife

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Huntress

Hunting is something most people consider a solitary exercise… Not with the Sparke family! We have 4 kids who don’t want to miss out on anything. So we all went out camping in our bush to go early morning hunting.

fireroast

We started with a big camp oven roast by the creek, then set up swags around a fire in a cleared area the kids are now affectionately referring to as ‘the hunting ground’.

mum camps

It was a clear beautiful evening, and then a still morning and a slight mist – perfect!

Trying to keep kids quiet was the hardest thing – but they were quiet enough for us to come across a small herd of fallow deer, and we took one.

We were lucky enough to have chefs visit the afternoon we were butchering! They cam to pick plums but got venison too. Thanks James and Nicola of biota!

butcherKat

Every piece of this lovely doe was enjoyed. The hide is tanning. The dogs got a shin bone each, and even our yabbies enjoyed the remnants of cheeks!

Redleaf Summer fun!

2016 has seen lots of summer fun at Redleaf farm. Kids have been swimming and enjoying the dam and creek, floating away the days…

floating

We have had several litters of piglets keeping us busy and have baby ducklings and even a baby turkey.

fluffy

I’ve been making apricot jam and fig jam for the kids, and endless wheelbarrows of ‘muesli mash’ for piggies.

muesli

We’ve had chefs visit to pick plums, fig leaves, nettles, mallow and herbs – and catch yabbies!

chefs visit

There’s been camping out by the creek, camp oven roasts on the fire, and lots of motorbikes over summer. Life is good!

fireroast

 

Free-Ranging Pigs

Anise the black Slavonian has been doing some clearing in the bush paddock in readiness for her babes. The sheer volume of foliage she has bulldozed into a nest overnight is astounding!

It is what pigs do…. So lovely to have them living and nesting naturally in a pigs’ paradise paddock.

photo

Gee they have made some mud though….

Free-Range Salami!

Our dear sow Poppy damaged her ligament in her knee. She was a Saddleback X Large Black – our greediest and fattest sow. She is now the most magnificent salami.

We have Mild Italian, Spicy Italian and Spicy Spanish style available now at $30/kg.
Large sticks are approx 1.5kg, small sticks 800g.

photo

Let katrina@redleaf-farm know if you would like some!

Irish Wolfhound puppies for sale!

Whiskey and Guinness have had their second (and last) litter of puppies. Unfortunately for Whiskey, one of them got stuck, and so she was raced to the vet for the rest to be delivered by caesarian. She had an unprecedented 17 puppies!

whiskey pups

It’s been a sleepless week for me, making sure every one stays warm without getting squashed, but with the help of our lovely farm girl Sarah we have managed to juggle the wriggling mass onto nipples and under blankets – and still have 17.

They will be ready to go from 8 weeks (mid July) and will cost $1500, vet checked, vaccinated, microchipped (and well handled). Both parents have beautiful temperaments and are fantastic with children. Both have exceptionally good hip scores.

whiskey sapphire

I have started a list already, so if you know of anyone or are interested yourself in having one of these gentle giants in your family, please let me know katrina@redleaf-farm.com

IMG_9236

Ultimate ‘farrowing crate’

Our friendly sow Anise has demonstrated beautifully how a free-ranging pig chooses to birth. The ‘sow stall’ she built herself under the trees resembles a lovely nest – protected and cozy, she has ripped low branches off the surrounding trees to line the hollowed out patch.

It did take us a few hours to find her – we knew she was due any day.

nest

She had snuck off to have some privacy – and deliver 9 healthy piglets.

It makes us so happy to see the pigs exhibit this natural behaviour! These babes will no doubt make a complete mess of the paddock in the next 3 months, grazing, rooting and wallowing – and turning into lean, succulent, sweet little suckers. They will have the best (if somewhat short) life any pig could hope for. Their taste will reflect the joy they have known, right from birth.

Creek-to-plate lunch

Well everyone loves paddock-to-plate, but we have had a cracking summer of creek-to-plate lunches too…NixYabby

We have found that the yabbies love pork and venison – making sure nothing goes to waste!

The kids favourite is a simple yabby spaghetti with sage and burnt butter.

cooked yabby

yabby spag

Paddock-to-plate late lunch

What a fantastic way to celebrate life!

Bubble and Crackle.

The table was set for 36 friends.

There were as many children, with Irish Wolfhound puppies interrupting their cricket game. Pork and Champagne kept the masses happy, served up by ‘Hogget’ of biota dining, with a few simple garden salads and bread rolls. Delicious.

Cheers!

B&CtableB&C pig crackle

lawndinner