Julie Beach of Lazy K Ranch
Julie Beachy of Stonecreek Ohio operates Lazy K Ranch. She has been raising sheep for over 7 years. Currently, she raises Shetlands and also Miniature Cheviots on a 52 acre pasture farm. There are about 40 sheep living happily on Lazy K Ranch.
Julie is a fiber artist as well as a farmer. She has used wool from her sheep to make rugs from core spun rug yarn. She’s also had roving made and used the fiber for her own spinning and felting projects.
Julie is currently focusing on pasture improvement. As she clears land for more pasture, the sheep are helping graze the underbrush and improve the soil quality. Pastures can be managed through rotational grazing or continuous grazing. In continuous grazing, animals are left on the same pasture to wander and eat as they wish. This can lead to overgrazing of preferred foliage. Sources of water or other commonly shared spaces are overused and can become muddy, leading to parasite and disease issues as well as run off concerns. For rotational grazing, animals are rotated throughout paddocks, separate sections of pasture. While the animals graze in one area, the other areas have a chance to rest and recover. This method of farming can lead to improved soil conditions, resulting in less run off and pollution. Rotational grazing is an excellent step to make a farm more resilient and sustainable. Julie hopes to start rotational grazing at Lazy K Ranch in 2021.
You can learn more about Lazy K Ranch by following their Facebook page.