The Grazing Begins, Rostock Farm
May 20th marks the first day of grazing; a good few weeks later than previous years but we will take what we get. The cows are happy to be eating the lush spring grass. Our farm is divided up into many different mini-pastures and the herd is moved daily to ensure they eat the highest quality of grass each day. Ideally, we try to move the cattle between 2-5pm when the sun is at it’s peak and the BRIX measurement is at it’s highest.. The sun builds up the nutrient density in the grasses so the cattle can absorb them more efficiently. When the cattle move to a new pasture, they feast ; and this is how we can “finish” on grass.
In October, 2012 I was privileged to be able to purchase the entire herd of 10 Registered Angus cows from Rostock Farm in Harriston, Ontario. These were some of the best cattle I have ever seen and the owner of the farm was Warren and Janice Ross. I knew Warren from childhood as my dad and I visited his pristine pastures one time and talked with him at various cattle meetings. Warren milked cows in earlier days and then switched to the Angus breed later on in life. He contributed much to the Ontario Angus Association with well selected genetics; he exampled himself as a respectable Angus breeder, excellent farmer, and a first class meticulous role model.
When he offered his cattle for sale, I jumped at the chance and he was gracious enough to not only sell them to me, but also calve them out for me as well. Those same calves are giving birth to their own calves this summer.
On Monday, May 19th, 2014, Warren passed away in Palmerston. I will take to heart all that he has taught me. I am proud to own part of his life’s work, that being his cattle that graze in my fields.