Good fodder for Oxen: No. 1

It wasn't that long ago, in the overall scheme of things, that most folks used the cycles of the moon to keep track of things. Only a mere one hundred and fifty years ago, that is about five generations ago, North America was by and large an agrarian place that worked just fine without appointment memos and daily reminders. All one had to do was glance up at the night sky to make sense of things.  If it was close to the new moon, that is, the moon's darkest or least visible phase, it was a good time to "set eggs" for hatching, or to get the cow bred.  If it was a bright moon, as August's Full Sturgeon, or September's Full Harvest moon, it was a good time to plan late evening work on account of better night-time visibility.

Likewise, most folks, regardless of religious affiliation, also relied upon the Anglican Church calendar.  If it was Saint Michael's Day, it was surely time that things were battened down for the approaching winter.  If it was the feast of Saint Lucia, it was the beginning of the dark months, with their cold nights and short days.  And in late winter, Ash Wednesday was a beacon of hope for warmer days and soft rains to come.

We are fortunate that Robert B. Thomas' Old Farmer's Almanac is still being published, now in its' two hundred and twenty-second year without interruption. Combining all of the above in the Almanac, you'll find just about everything you'll need to know if you're of an agrarian persuasion; when to plant, when to harvest, when to plow, or even when to fix fences. In it you'll find all kinds of valuable information to digest and ponder; useful bits of knowledge delivered "with a pleasant degree of humor."   As the old-timers used to say where I grew up, between its' covers, you'll find plenty that's every bit as valuable as "good fodder for oxen".  When you get a chance, stop by the Haymarket and pick one up.