We are seven weeks out from the start of our truffle season and I am already completely run off my feet. So I thought what a great time to start a blog!?! Hmm maybe not…
So seven weeks to go…with seven being my lucky number. Let’s hope that rubs off on the season and it is a successful one. The thing about truffle farming is you can’t see your crop. That is what makes exciting, but also a little bit scary.
The beginning of 2016 has been hectic. It all started with the official purchase of the farm. The sale process was far from uneventful, and once the farm was settled we discovered it had been left in a pretty poor state. It has already been a long few months getting the trees and soil prepared in order to produce a good crop.
Our first bit of media for the year was an article on our dogs. What started out as feel good story for Doglovers @DAS (Domestic Animal Services) newsletter which went viral. Obviously it was fantastic that rescue dogs were getting so much attention, but all of a sudden I was inundated with requests to help more dogs find new homes.
One of the requests led me to being introduced to the fantastic people at Labrador Rescue. If you weren’t already aware, this group of volunteers work hard to find homes for Labradors of all ages. I personally found it staggering to hear the number of dogs that they help every year - 365 per year on average. My hat goes off to all the volunteers and the work they do.
Twelve months on my truffle pigs, Winnie and Piglet, are no longer cute and cuddly…well that’s not exactly true…it’s just that it is now near impossible to cuddle. They each must weigh more than 100 kg now. Actually they still are pretty cute, especially the way they say hi to me each morning…with a “la la la” and a nod of their head.
With the pigs growing so quickly, so has my food bill for these two little pigs. So what else was I going to do but try my hand at growing pumpkins. To be fair growing pumpkins didn’t turn out to be very hard at all. I dug a hole and threw in some pumpkins seeds and a few months later ta da! Success! However, they ate through my whole crop in one afternoon so I may have to expand on Operation Grow My Own Pig Food (GMOPF).
At the farm we know the season is coming when the leaves start to change and so does the dogs behaviour. By their own accord, they start to wander over to the gate that leads to the trufferie. We will know its definitely game time as soon as Samson starts to wander over and instead of looking longingly into the oak forest he will start to lift his nose and then he is off! Running up and down the fence line, bounding with sheer joy in his eyes.
Finally, and with a huge sigh of relief, our DIY website is up and running. It will no doubt require constant improvement but we are pretty proud of our efforts nonetheless. The most important part is that tickets for the best treasure hunt in Canberra are now available.
Well, that’s about all for now. I look forward to sharing this truffle farming journey with you all!