Thistle Hill Farm – Blog

…doing what comes naturally

Category: David

An early morning stroll…

…but with a purpose.  This part of the herd has finished strip grazing the East pasture and is moving to fresh grass in the West pasture. This is not the entire herd…just the mamas with their steer and heifer calves.  At about eight months we move the bull-calf pairs to an auxiliary field. An important […]

Holding you hostage…

…hackers have been targeting American consumers recently…by going after fuel and food. First the cyber-attack on Colonial pipelines which cut off gasoline supplies on the East Coast. And now the second largest meat packer in the US has been hit.  Apparently Russian hackers are behind this one and demanding a ransom. The two attacks demonstrate […]

The magic of grazing…

This photo by son-in-law Curt Humphreys captures the harmonious relationship among soil, grass, animals and sky that is an on-going process on the pastures of Thistle Hill. There are no losers in this kind of farming…the soil, the grass, the cows and the environment all prosper.  And the farmer does, too. It’s easy to lose […]

The war against red meat…

…seems to have gathered some steam in recent years. Undoubtedly there’s new…and serious…money (Bill Gates) behind the campaign. We haven’t given much thought to what has always seemed like a religious cult…but here’s an Australian who confirms what I only suspected. Vegetarianism goes way back in history but really only flourished near the end of […]

Just a quick tour…

…this past weekend.  (Warning: no pigs; they’re off at freezer camp) First stop the shipping pen where this four-year old bull is waiting for his ride to a commercial operation in southwest Virginia.  Clark Family farms have been good friends and customers for a number of years. The Clarks also selected one of our young […]

The butcher’s breed…

…was the name the English gave to the Devon.  That was because of the quality of Devon meat.  It was about that time that the leading English agriculturalist Robert Bakewell pronounced Devon the perfect cow…in no further need of refinement by crossing with other breeds. At Thistle Hill we have devoted our time and resources […]

Words unnecessary…

He’s doing his part…are you?! David

Thistle Hill alumni club…

…features our Equinox at home at Spring Pastures farm near Middletown, Maryland. Equinox is packed with our best pure English Devon genetics…Churchill on one side…Buttercup on the other.  It’s the second bull Thistle Hill has supplied to Brooke Henley and Tom Garnett. Brooke is excited by his first calves…eight so far, all vigorous and thick. […]

It’s official…

…Spring is here! We know because the interior portable electric fencing has gone up and our cows have begun their strip grazing.  From now through the first of the year the main herd will be allocated about an acre of pasture at a time. To tide them over the summer slump when grass nutrition value […]

Click bait…

…although we didn’t call it that back in my ink-stained days of newspapering.  Back then editors were always looking for photos that would help sell papers. The formula was simple…pretty girls, babies and animals.  Get a picture with two out of three and you were guaranteed good placement in the paper. Today with the Internet […]