07 MCR - The Big Roundup
Raising free-range cigar-trees has its ups & downs. For a while, I thought maybe all my cigars had wandered off, seeking greener pastures somewhere East of the Rockies.
So, I set off last week with our two Australian Tobacco dogs, Zosma & Zubra, to try to find them.
Luckily, living in the rather steep mountains and quite dense redwood forests, there's just not that far off that a young cigar tree can wander -- so they hadn't gotten far, and we were able to bring back all (3ea of 12 varietals) but two of the Madole. The dogs were saddened by the loss, and didn't want to give up looking but, after 6 days on the trail, it was time to drive the herd back home.
On the way, we found that wolves had raided another ranch, killing the rancher, all of his family and most of his stock. So, we adopted a few extra Mountains & a couple of spare Indians. Having the count back up to where it should be seemed to make the Z-boys happy, but I'm a bit worried about how the new distribution will affect the blend in the final cigars. Well, that's something to worry about when the time comes, I suppose...
It being Autumn, there's not much for the little guys to eat. I supliment their grazing, but we're trying to let them have run of the fields, and not keep them cooped up where the stress might cause foul tasting hormones to be released into the meat. Still, they're growing up slowly (I suppose the lack of TGH* hasn't helped, either), and I half wonder if we might end up with little veal Cigarillos. Patience, I suppose, is the strong suit of any cowboy, so I guess we'll just have to wait and see how they Winter-over, and weigh them all in Spring.