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Zink Berry Farm and Kiko Goats

RAISING BERRIES NATURES WAY

My Blog

Blog

Berries and goats

Posted on July 1, 2016 at 10:36 PM Comments comments (160)
The blueberries are huge and delicious! The black raspberries are winding down. We still have some available but they will only last a little while longer. The red raspberries are sparse not sure why but our plants appear to be dying.  I planted an English walnut tree in that area and maybe that is the problem? The black berries are going to be plentiful this year they are already making berries and are red . They are going to be early this year too. My husband has been picking so we have been selling prepicked along with having the you pick. Thanks to all the folks who have came out and persevered the heat to pick berries.  We also have fresh free range eggs available and goat milk soap.  The eggs are $1.50/dozen and the soap is $2/bar. It does make your skin soft!  We also have a couple of bucklings for sale for anyone searching for a herd sire for their goats. They are 6 months old and weigh in around 80-85 pounds. One is a purebred for $250 and the other is an 88% commercial buckling and he is $175.  We are also selling our 5 year old purebred buck for $500.  He is great with the girls, easy to handle and throws beautiful parasite resistant kids.  Have a great July 4th, handle fireworks with care and stay safe!    Jill Zink

kids and berries

Posted on March 9, 2015 at 1:18 AM Comments comments (28)
Our new kids are growing faster than weeds.  We have some very impressive bucklings this year.  They seem to be built with large bones and long bodies.  The kids are very colorful this year.  I think God had a good time and great imagination when creating them. 
 The weather is finally starting to break so we also need to get busy on the berry patch and try to stay ahead of the weeds and pruning. 
The end of 2014 and the beginning of 2015 has given us some  tough losses recently with the loss of  my step mom, a dear friend of ours, and 2 very much loved dogs Bear and Bailey.  Hopefully all the sadness is done for the year and we can start to heal.
We look forward to spring and getting the garden put in and planning for canning.  Hopefully we don't have any late frost and the berries will bear lots of yummy fruit.  I hope this finds all of you well and anxious for spring to arrive.  We look forward to seeing you all again. Until then Jill

Berries and goats

Posted on July 10, 2013 at 5:25 AM Comments comments (80)
Blueberries are available, they are ripening faster than what we expected.  Black berries are really turning red so they should be available in 2-3weeks.  For those who follow the bucks in the buck test they are still doing good. Anxious to see their next weigh in.  We weaned the last 2 bucklings over the weekend.  I think they and their mom are all hoarse from crying.  They both were 60+ pounds. 

b erries and goats

Posted on May 13, 2012 at 11:04 PM Comments comments (145)
The blackberries are blooming and the red and black raspberries are growing.  The blueberries were full of blooms but got nipped by the frost.   We would apppreciate any donation of old bedsheets so we can make row covers for our blueberry bushes.  The raspberries will only have a fall crop this year since we replanted them last fall. 
     Maggie and Lucky have not been around for roughly 6 weeks now.  I hope and pray they are just hanging out with other deer and are safe. 
     We are getting ready to take 7 bucklings to the Maryland buck test.  They count all fecal egg counts unlike the Oklahoma buck test so it should be a more accurate representation of the goats actual parasite load and its ability to resist parasites.  They also inject the goats with barber pole worms so they will have a parasite load during the test.  We are hoping to have our boys do as well in this test as doc holiday, thor and tnt did at the Oklahoma
buck test.
     We look forward to seeing everyone again this summer. 

new babies

Posted on February 6, 2012 at 9:50 PM Comments comments (43)
The new kids are sure bouncing around and growing like weeds.  We put a stack of skids in an area that they can get to and jump on.  The bigger they get the more it looks like we have.  They already love attention and want you to pet them and play.  We are trying to get the DNA done on everyone so they will be DNA genotyped and parentage verified.  All the does are being good mothers and even the 2 sets of triplets seem to be getting satisfied.  Tomorrow we are going to weigh them again to check their average daily gain.  It will be interesting to see how the triplets compare to the singles and twins.  We have already had to adjust their chains (we use the plastic chain) and will probably have to adjust them again tomorrow.  We are only having trouble with one doe not wanting to let her kids suckle both tits.  She seems to be getting better but we are actually having to milk out the one tit a little so she doesn't run into trouble.  Hopefully by doing this the soreness will be relieved and she will stop stomping when the kids try to nurse that side.
 

Berry Update

Posted on July 31, 2011 at 12:56 AM Comments comments (30)
 
Blackberries are still plentiful.  We had an issue with ground bees and burnt out their nest tonight.  Hopefully there aren't any more in the berry patch but we are going to try and weedeat through the blackberries and that will surely stir up any in that area.  We were thankful for the shower we got but I know we could still use more rain.  I don't believe it was enough to help the blueberries set fruit but miracles do happen.  The raspberries are taking their sweet time ripening for the fall fruit set but the good thing is that they will produce another crop.  Maggie Mae and Lucky came to the house around 3:30 this afternoon and hung out until around 6:15 this evening.  They ate some corn and hay then just lay in the shaded area of the front yard until it was bottle time.  I have decided that during hunting season I want to get a paint stick like they use at sale barns and write PET on their sides.  Hopefully hunters in the area will respect the fact that they are bottle babies and not take aim.  I just hope they will take refuge on our property during that time and remain safe.  I would like to find a good home or homes for some of our goat whethers so if any of you hear of anyone desiring a goat pet for brush clearing or companionship I would appreciate it if you would mention our babies.  They range in age from 2 years old to 7 months old and are all very loving and gentle.  They need a place that they can browse for food (they prefer a wooded area with brush) , have shelter from the hot sun, rain, and cold winters, and fresh clean water to drink. We are also going to be selling some bucklings that will be ready to breed in the late fall.  They are also very people friendly and enjoy being loved on.  Also if anyone knows of someone that would like to find a home for a hen turkey or two I think Peep Peep would calm down and not be so protective of me if he had a real girlfriend.  Warrior our New Zealand buck seems to be walking better.  He is by no means back to normal but with each passing day I at least am not thinking about having to have him put down.  I am thankful for that since he is such a beautiful buck and throws awesome babies.  We got another set of results back from the buck test in Oklahoma yesterday and our boys are doing good.  Two of them (Momma & Warriors ) are gaining weight and showing excellent parasite resistance.  Samantha & Zorros buckling is still superior in parasite resistance (has had no parasite eggs in his feces to date) but actually lost a pound in the 17 days.  I am not sure why since the other two gained, one 4lbs. and the other 8 lbs. but hopefully he will get use to their forage and heat and catch up.  Gunner the new horse has really caught on to the idea of shadowing my steps.  I plan on working with him on side passing and then teaching him to dance the electric slide with me.  He honestly seems to enjoy the attention and is very in tune to my game of shadowing.  I think with lots of love and patience he will enjoy learning as much as I will enjoy working with him.  I want to get him to do it with music so he can get to feel the beat. LOL   We are very happy to have him as a new addition to our family and I want to expose him to many different disceplines and see which ones he enjoys the most.  I believe that  he will be a wonderful all around horse.  I am hoping to compete with him in the extreme cowboy trail challenge next year which is where you race your horse through obstacles.  He seems to be unafraid of things that most horses find spooky.  Hope you all have a safe and wonderful weekend.  Jill Zink 

berry update June 28th Tuesday

Posted on June 28, 2011 at 1:07 PM Comments comments (22)
 
There are plenty of raspberries for picking.  There are still some blueberries to ripen but we are anxious for the next bushes to start blooming.  There won't be a daily blog on Thursday or Friday this week since I will be out of state taking our bucklings to Oklahoma.  You will still be welcome to come pick on those days since my son and his family will be here to feed and take care of the business. 
    One of our hens has hatched out 2 new chicks.  One is yellow and one is  black.  I know people have the general impression that chickens are dumb but I saw something last night that  refutes that generalization. Her new chicks can not make it into the hen house through the side door because they can not jump up that high.  I opened the walk through door so they would not have to jump as high.  I felt that I would still have to help them get in but their mother hopped in the hen house and when she saw they could not jump high enough she took her beak and raked out some of the corn stubble onto the ground so that they could stand on it and jump into the hen house. 
    Maggie Mae and Lucky are still meeting me in the woods to get their bottle.  We seem to be getting better at meeting and if I just stay in our spot and call they will come without me having to walk and call.  Yesterday though they followed me back to the garage since they were wet from the rain the night before.  I towel dryed them and gave them a small bottle at noon and then took them back and met them at their supper time.  I am going to always look for them even when they are out on their own and no longer need me to bring them a bottle.

Sunday June 26th Berry update

Posted on June 26, 2011 at 10:35 AM Comments comments (20)
         At this time there is only a small amount of blueberries left to ripen (several pounds) and our mid season are not yet blooming.  There are still alot of raspberries yet to ripen but will need a day to be plentiful again.  The blackberries are still a couple weeks? away from being ripe. 
         Update on  the deer:  They are now living in the woods full time and I just walk down to feed them their bottles twice a day.  It is stressful for me because I have to walk and call them to get them to come for their bottle.  The girls don't seem to live together and therefore one may come immediately and I still have to look for the other one.  Today Lucky followed me back to the garage and I towel dryed her after last nights rain.  Maggie Mae ate first this morning and then ran up and down on the dam road until she was warm and then went back into the woods.  I miss being able to check on them at any time, but I want them to maintain their wild streak for their own safety.  They are at least living in the area where I took them for many walks and is not close to where anyone will hunt them and there are no roads.
            Emily from Premier Ag has taken our berry samples to the lab now and we should here the results from them by next Friday.  Hopefully it is not a disease where we will have to destroy the berries and wait to plant again.  I know that we are not the only ones that are having the same symptoms. 
           We finally got another 7 acre  hay field planted so we can plant more berries in the field next to the berries.  Our goal for the future is to plant more raspberries, some black raspberries, and more of the early and mid blueberries.  we did a trial plot of strawberries and they seem to thrive, so that may also be another option for us.  We have considered planting the strawberries in planters that are mounted to posts in a tier.  I would welcome any feedback as to your thoughts and feelings about this method as to picking standing up compared to on your knees.  Also I would like to hear your thoughts as to June bearing vs. everbearing.  I know with the other berries even though we have fall raspberries, blackberries that are going strong late and late variety blueberries we don't have many people wanting berries in late August and September.  Also if there are any requests for a berry that we don't grow please mention it to us and we will consider planting them.  Our goal is to try to have the berries that you enjoy and in quanties that are in line with the demand. 
             We have had some requests for upick vegtables also.  We planted large gardens this year so that we can resupply our canned goods.  Also a friend of ours had cancer and was unable to put out a garden so I thought we would share  our crop.  We still may have veggies available though so if you would like any please just ask and we may be able to accomadate you.  Thank you all for coming and we hope to see you again soon.  Jill Zink
   

Berry Update

Posted on June 25, 2011 at 12:50 AM Comments comments (28)
Saturday June 25th 
 
 There are several pounds of red raspberries that are ripe and ready to be picked.  The blueberries have been well picked over the last few days and it will be several days before there are any ready to be picked.  I was surprised when I saw the raspberries  we had pickers for several days in a row and they were keeping them picked clean.  It was just a week ago that we got our first berries off for the season and it amazes me how quickly they are ripening.  We actually turned people away on Friday and they just have magically ripened!!  One thing that has hurt us this season too is that we actually have a row and a half of raspberries that appear to be dying so there is very little fruit to start with. Premier Ag out of Trafalgar is sending several samples to the lab for us to try and determine what is happening with our berries and if there is anything we can do to stop them from dying.  We applied some aggrand 4-3-3 fertilizer and that seems to have slowed their death but not sure if they will survive.  By this time next week we should have some answers.  If any of you are encountering the same problems please feel free to share your symptoms with us and see if our lab results can help you resolve your issues also. 
    I apologize that we are not available by phone....we are on T Mobile but live in their roaming area.  We are on an AT&T tower that is possibly down we are really not sure.  I have to go to Franklin, Indiana to make a call or receive any voice messages.  I tried to get most called but if I did not get to you please just keep checking the website for updates on the berries.  I will post again each day with updates on the berries and thanks for being patient ,
Jill Zink

1st day of berry picking

Posted on June 17, 2011 at 5:03 PM Comments comments (22)
       June 17,2011
    Today we picked the first berries of the season.  We only had 2 lbs. of raspberries and  we picked 2 lbs of blueberries.  There were still a few more blueberries but we thought we'd leave them  a bit longer.  The raspberries will be a few days before there are any more ripe.  This season everything seems to be behind a couple of weeks.  We are going to have our blackberries and raspberries tested by a lab next week to see what is causing  some of them to die and the blackberry canes seem to have died back  halfway down the canes.   Ours are not the only ones that seem to be suffering and hopefully we can nip the problem in the bud before we lose our plants.  We planted a test plot of strawberries and they seem to be doing ok .  I am hoping that next year we can add strawberries to our list of berries that we have available.  We are going to hopefully make a trip to Michigan and see how they grow them in pots on posts and learn more from a commercial grower up there. 
    Our critterws are all doing well.  We have a new rooster  named road runner who seems to enjoy being petted but not really held.  He came to us from a family that hand raised him and showed him lots of love.  We also purchased a couple of paint boer goats from Kansas that make a wonderful addition to our farm.  Three of our young bucklings are going to go to Oklahoma the end of June to compete in the buck forage test which identifies bucklings that have a good average daily gain, good parasite resistance, and a loin eye that grows above the other competitors.  This is our first year to send any bucklings and we are hoping they do well.  We currently have 31 goats, 2 calves that are just over a year old, 4 ducks, 13 chickens (although more to come since we have 3 hens setting on the nest), 1 horse ( we sold Kiowe the app mare), and 8 dogs.  Our turkey, peep peep, has gotten very protectve of me and so we have to keep an eye on him when we have visitors.  He likes me to kiss the top of his head and everyone else he seems to want to flog or peck.  
    Other exciting news is our neighbor Jeff has moved his horse back riding business to just across the road from us so if any of you like to ride horses then when you come bring some jeans and plan a day where you can not only pick berries but go for a nice trail ride.  Jeff  charges $ 20/45 minute ride.  His horses are very gentle so even kids can enjoy a beautiful ride.  We look forward to seeing you all this season and  hope you can make our festival.  I think we may push it back to September though after we have cut the last cutting of hay so watch for any updates  on this page and the events page. 
 

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