Spring Farmstead Panorama

Farm Spring Pan – April 15th
To see a large version of the panorama (1.4MB) clic the image above but beware that the image is very large. Instead of clicking there, if you want to see high resolution parts, just look at the 100% crops below. I am testing out my new Casio Exilim EX-V8 digital camera that replaces the FujiFilm E900 I had which failed. I don’t have the new 4GB memory chip yet so I’m still shooting using the 12MB of built in memory.

The panorama above was stitched together from eight 1600 x 1200 ppi (2Mpixel) images using HP Panorama Stitch. No corrections were applied. The camera is basically in the factory default settings using ISO 50 normal quality. Below are 100% cropped chunks from the original images for those pixel peeping prone people.

Western Sky & Spruces

Spruce trees against the sky in the west in morning light. Looks good. No Purple Fringing (PF) / Chromatic Arberation (CA) which was such a problem with the E900 camera.


Good dynamic range in the treehouse. Good colors. Nice sharp details. Notice the bare grass along the stone walls!?! Spring is coming!

Cottage East Side

The sunlit side of our tiny cottage looks great. No over exposure from the light reflected off the foil roof. The Casio camera seems to have better dynamic range than the FujiFilm or my old Nikon CoolPix 990 offered.

Dog House

The Dog House is revealed! Until just days ago it was completely buried under the snow. It is amazing how fast the snow is going now. The backhoe is also almost completely out of the snow sitting up on its pallet.

Farm House

Looking down at our old farm house I can make out the bricks as well as the ladder on the roof that I used for cleaning the chimney. That ladder’s been there for 16 years. I’m starting to notice a little internal reflection in the photo which is degrading the image quality as we turn eastward toward the sun.

Looking Into Sun

Bad thing to do – don’t look into the sun with this camera. It appears that the Casio doesn’t have very good coatings on the lens. My previoius Fuji and Nikon cameras took fine photos looking towards the light but the Casio EX-V8 consistently gives murky, blurry images. I’ve tested this under a variety of conditions all with the same results. Ding the score there.

South Field

Spruce trees down at the end of the south field against a bright morning sky.

Upper Pond Beach Stone Wall

Nice sharp detail, depth and colors as we turn away from the sun to the west.

So that was the Panorama tour for photo-geeks, or anyone else, considering buying the Casio Exilim EX-V8. I like the camera so far. Its lens is definitely not as good as my old Nikon’s. It isn’t a digital SLR (DSLR) medium or high end camera but it does do an excellent job and allows full manual controls as well as fully automatic. More to come as I explore the camera in the coming weeks…

Farm Tour version:
To the far left is our pile of fire wood. Given that the cottage is using less than a cord a year that should last five years to a decade.

At the top of the road area few round bales of hay. We feed hay to our pigs and it comes in round bales that weigh 800 to 1200 lbs typically.

In the distance is the kids’ treehouse and unseen behind that is mystery pond.

Our tiny cottage is front and center. We moved in Christmas Eve of 2007. The cottage is still wearing it’s scaffolding as we have more work to do but it is habitable and cozy.

In the distance behind the cottage is the north home field, then the north field, our sugar bush and Sugar Mountain. Half of our pig herd is in the north and half to the south. Today I noticed some pigs in the north home field winter paddock venturing out through the gate into the north field. They’re hoping for spring. When the snows were deep they stuck very close to home.

Peeking from behind the cottage is the chicken coop. The chickens have started to lay again. They went on strike when winter dragged on too long. It isn’t their favorite season. Soon there will be bugs.

On the flat by our cottage is the dog house is revealed from the deep snows. The dog house was one of our miniature test structures where we worked out ideas for how to design and build the tiny cottage. In that area there are still many pallets of granite yet to be revealed from the snow as well as some of my test disks of ferro cement that have just appeared. The backhoe is about out of the snow where it virtually vanished in the winter. In the distance behind the dog house is Knox and Butterfield mountains.

Behind the cherry tree is our old farm house which was built sometime between 1777 and 1825. I’ve been told a lot of different dates. Definitely an antique. It remains to be seen exactly what will happen to it. Unless someone comes along and buys it to move it to a new site I’ll probably use it for agricultural purposes. Then when asked “were you raised in a barn!?” our kids can respond, “well, yes.”

At the south end of the old farm house is the south end shed. Today we moved the sows Abbey, Blackie, Petra in to the south end paddock as they are v
ery bagged and will likely farrow soon.

There is one utility pole on the other side of the house. That is the end of the line for Washington Electric Coop. There is not any actual phone service or internet service. Instead I ran about a mile and a half of wire through the woods. I was amazed when we were able to get aDSL over that. A big thanks to the Topsham Telephone guys!

Looking to the east, er, right, is the middle whey tank. We get daily whey deliveries from Vermont Butter & Cheese, a local organic cheese and butter maker in Barre, Vermont. Whey plus pasture/hay are the two main portions of our pigs’ diet. This also helps to recycle the whey and keep it out of the waste stream.

Here comes the sun, la-la-la or something like that. This part of the panorama is rather murky as the Casio doesn’t handle looking into the sun very well. There is a compost bin next to an open round bale surrounded by snow banks which are working on melting. In the distance is the south field. Across the valley is Hannah Hill, which is palindromic for those who like such word play. Beyond the maple trees is the south field which is now ruled by the big boar Spot.

In the near ground is the stone wall around the picnic area, the stone table and the upper pond. The stone table is about rib high normally, perhaps 36″ off the ground. I haven’t ashed that snow so it isn’t melting very quickly.

Poking out of the snow you can see the top of one of the farm implements over past the pond.

The water is crystal clear and deceptively deep. The upper pond is our reserve water supply for the farm for the month of August incase we have a dry year. As such the pigs do not get to play in the pond. The south herd has the lower pig pond during the hot months which they greatly enjoy. The north herd makes do with a small mud wallow below one of the springs.

Outdoors: 39°F/25°F Sunny
Farm House: 59°F/50°F Flos->Winnie
Tiny Cottage: 65°F/49°F Windows open

About Walter Jeffries

Tinker, Tailor...
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6 Responses to Spring Farmstead Panorama

  1. Ginny says:

    Don’t you love the nifty things cameras can do these days? I just discovered the panarama thingy on my camera and it blew me away.

    Nice pics. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Haymaker says:

    Neat! I looked at the panorama before I read the description and I did a double-take when I came to the backhoe. I though, “Son of a gun, his tractor is completely buried now!”

    Thanks for sharing.

  3. Brian says:

    I see 0 pigs 0 dogs and0 kids!

  4. Very good! Sharp eyes seeing what was not! :)

  5. Anonymous says:

    I always love your pan pix Walt!!

  6. Janice says:

    What a great idea for a farm tour for those of us who cant get out to the country in the mud seasons. Thanx!

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