Unexpected “Treasures”

For some reason, farmers of old (and, sadly, probably some still) thought that throwing old metal farm implements, myriads of rolls of barbed wire or woven wire in ditches, along with old hedge posts would somehow magically make the ditch stop washing.  Nothing could be further from the truth!  However, it could be said that throwing trash in the ditch answers men’s idea of ‘cleaning’ sort of the ‘out of sight, out of mind’ that women simply cannot fathom.  It’s still there for goodness sake!

Blessed with incredibly fine weather and a wee bit of time and some great help last week and after owning this property for about 26 years, this 50 foot stretch of ditch had the metal pulled out.  Because of the junk, the water simply pools and won’t allow healing.  Once I graze the pasture down this winter with my cows, I’ll burn all the wood trash and cut down as many rubbish trees as necessary to allow this ditch/draw to grass over and heal, so erosion will STOP!

What a surprise to find these fine implements stacked alongside the ditch – most are in decent working order, though too antiquated to be useful except as yard ornaments.

Numerous heavy rolls of woven wire with farm implements loaded on the back.  It took the three of us with pickup, machinery mover, tractor and loader about 3 hours to clean it out of the ditch.  Environmentally, it’s the right thing to do, but putting a pencil reveals high costs and no income side to this type farm improvement project.
Son, Dallas, loads the old horse drawn seated one bottom plough.


Two antique harrow sections; one of them is in excellent condition.
Cute horse drawn cultivator.
This is likely a walk behind one bottom plough.  It’s missing the wooden handles.
One of at least 20 big rolls of woven wire buried in the mud and muck, this one even had small trees and multiflora rose grown up through.
Brett and I worked together to wrap log chains through the center of each roll, Dallas pulled them out with the tractor, then smashed them flat with the front end loader.  Later, we would pack two or three of them in the loader and Dallas would load them onto the machinery mover (trailer).



8 thoughts on “Unexpected “Treasures””

    1. Well, that’s just it – stuff wasn’t thrown away or given away. For example, on our farm, we have at least 12 old grain carts that were used in the seed cleaning operation for 40 plus years. However, now that the next generation is no longer interested in that business and market conditions and farming practices have changed, there was little reason to continue it. All the carts and equipment are now rusting down, yet a good portion of it could be repurposed or even put back into service. As each farming operation gets larger and larger to survive narrowing profit margins, the less likely there will be a place for small equipment, but for now, 10 ft disks, small grain carts, hay unrollers, small combines, etc still can find new homes yet unless we sell them or give them away NOW or better 5-15 years ago, they are quickly disintegrating into scrap metal instead. I suspect this happens in all industry, but i can only speak to farming/agriculture as well as our own home bound keepsakes – most of which need to move on. Granted, some things regain some value as antiques, but i’d rather see someone get use out of stuff rather than just hoping my junk will become an antique for future generations. Does that answer your question? or did i misunderstand?

      Liked by 2 people

    2. i see now you answered your question in response to the rolled up fencing. Same answer really, the old wire is rotten. But this does beg the question as to why wasn’t it taken to recycling and all i can figure is that there simply was no place to haul farm scrap to recycle. I can easily spend the rest of my life cleaning out scrap fence, metal panels, old cattle and hog feeders, water tanks, old machinery, etc out of the ditches just on my small farm. It’s a costly endeavor due to the time it takes, involving at least two people, a tractor with a front end loader, log chains, a pickup and flat trailer to load up and haul off all the junk. Sadly, scrap metal continues to have little value and certainly not enough to even pay the fuel bill.

      Liked by 2 people

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