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Sycultour

Hay harvest in Vojsko

Preparing fodder for winter is one of the most important summer farming chores on the Vojsko Plateau.

Description

Ever since the Vojsko Plateau in the Idrija Hills was first settled, preparing fodder for winter has been one of the important local summer farming chores because the winters here are very long. For example, from 1991 to 2006 there was an annual average of 122 days with a minimum daily temperature below freezing and 113 days with snow on this plateau, which has an average elevation of 1,024 m. In addition to forestry, stockbreeding is the most important economic activity. Before the hay harvest, which usually began after the Feast of St. Peter and Paul on 29 June, the farmers had to check and repair all the necessary tools (scythes, rakes, hay forks, and wagons). On the first day of the harvest, which they also determined taking into account the weather conditions, the mowers gathered at the farm in the early morning. These also included tenants or people that were indebted to the owner of the farm in some way and came to perform day labor for him. Together with the farmer, the workers headed out to the meadow that needed to be mown. The mowing took place in rows. The mown grass was scattered and turned with rakes so it could dry faster. The dried hay was raked together and loaded onto the wagon with special care. They harnessed horses to the wagon and brought it to the farm, where they stored the hay for the winter. Mowing by hand was practiced until the beginning of the 1960s and not only on flat land, but also on extremely steep slopes. This effectively prevented areas from being overgrown with unwanted vegetation. Mechanical mowing gradually replaced mowing by hand on the Vojsko Plateau, but small areas around the farms are still mowed by hand today.

Responsibility

Farmers that still know how to mow by hand; members of the KUD Planika Vojsko (Cultural Society).

Role

This traditional farming chore continues to be the most effective on small and especially steep slopes; it prevents these areas from being overgrown and plays an especially important role in connecting the community. Even the mere preparation of the scenes in the film designed by members of the KUD Planika Vojsko (Cultural Society) encouraged a number of locals to participate. Local significance

Potential usability

Mowing by hand on steep slopes prevents progressive overgrowth of these areas. In addition it encourages locals to form connections and spend time together, and also helps preserve traditional knowledge and skills. This value could be incorporated into ethnological events during the parish holiday.


ZRC SAZU
CTRIA HCC RoT Občina Jesenice CMS PAT PRA UNSPMF Chamber of Economy of Vojvodina