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Red Gate Farm

Red Gate Farm Located in southern IL, we are a horse-powered, sustainable farm, promoting stewardship and educational opportunities, while raising our family and improving our surrounding environment.

We also train horses and offer TIP-gentled mustangs for adoption. We are a horse-powered, educational, sustainable permaculture farm, striving to raise our children, grow our business, and become more God-sufficient (as opposed to self-sufficient) all while improving the soils and surrounding natural blessings we have been given. We offer a variety of classes, clinics, tours, and more!

Operating as usual

I need help from you horse people!  Hoping I can get some ideas here… I’m ready to start setting up my new tack room. I’...
04/18/2022

I need help from you horse people!

Hoping I can get some ideas here… I’m ready to start setting up my new tack room. I’m trying to come up with ideas to organize most efficiently. We ride, drive, teach clinics, and give lessons, so I have harnesses as well as saddles, plus all the other stuff one collects when they have horses. We also have a variety of sizes of horses in and out of here as a training barn, which results in its own storage issues! My tack room is fairly small, and I try to keep my stuff purged to only what I use regularly. I’m open to any ideas anyone can offer for a smaller sized tack room (8x12’), but especially ideas for the bulky stuff, such as extra collar pads, extra thick pads for riding purposes (ie foam riser pads, buddy pad, etc), full-body fly nets (I usually just hang by collar hook), hoof boots, etc. This stuff just seems to take up tons of space, but I don’t want to give up an entire saddle rack for a lightweight, but bulky, pad. I’m also sick of the drawer and shelf stuff that just collects thick layers of dust and cobwebs. Please offer up the solutions that you’ve found! I am a visual person, so pics are greatly appreciated, too! Post them in the comments, and help others as well!

(Pic NOT mine, just found from internet photo stock for attn)

It’s that time of year!  Since most of my family abandoned me to head back to Petersburg for a visit this weekend, I am ...
04/17/2022

It’s that time of year! Since most of my family abandoned me to head back to Petersburg for a visit this weekend, I am spending a relaxing Easter Sunday grooming the wooly mammoth—aka Iris, the Great Pyrenees. It’s an annual chore she isn’t crazy over, but gives me a chance to check her over good and she always feels so much better after we get the loose, itchy winter shed off!

Now this is a fence!  We are building our runs behind Stall Alley using 6 x 6 posts, 7 feet tall, and five rails of 2 x ...
04/16/2022

Now this is a fence! We are building our runs behind Stall Alley using 6 x 6 posts, 7 feet tall, and five rails of 2 x 8 oak that Sean milled. It is one seriously stout fence! Although it is very unusual to have horses challenge fences, in my years of training mustangs, I’ve had one horse go over two 6 foot fences, A horse crash through a continuous panel fence, and another horse crash into a standard pipe panel causing the welds to break loose and the horse to escape. Being a TIP trainer is quite a bit different than just adopting the occasional mustang, since so many horses with so many personalities come and go over time. In any case, we are progressing ever closer to getting our TIP program up and running again.

Pea gravel and permanent post and rail fences are going in for the stalls!. 
04/15/2022

Pea gravel and permanent post and rail fences are going in for the stalls!. 

Tack room floor is basically done.  I still have to sweep in paver locking sand, but it won’t change the look much.  I’m...
04/13/2022

Tack room floor is basically done. I still have to sweep in paver locking sand, but it won’t change the look much. I’m quite proud of this! It has so much more character than plain ‘ole concrete, and only cost me the gravel and sand!

We tackled one of the massive, old brick piles today! We’re doing some of the finishing touches on the tack room, which ...
04/12/2022

We tackled one of the massive, old brick piles today! We’re doing some of the finishing touches on the tack room, which include a brick floor. Notice the tree that started growing out of the top of the brick pile. That’s how long those bricks have been sitting there. I can’t wait to reveal the finished product. It is looking fabulous, though I am a bit biased! 

Not much of a nightlife around here! Working hard in the daytime means sleeping hard as soon as possible!
04/12/2022

Not much of a nightlife around here! Working hard in the daytime means sleeping hard as soon as possible!

Lazy Sunday afternoon.  Doesn’t everyone sit around, rocking baby goats?! 🤣
04/10/2022

Lazy Sunday afternoon. Doesn’t everyone sit around, rocking baby goats?! 🤣

As part of our new build, we are also creating a larder and a root cellar.  We tend to get a lot of questions about thes...
04/08/2022

As part of our new build, we are also creating a larder and a root cellar. We tend to get a lot of questions about these rooms, so I thought I’d offer some insight.

A pantry is typically not much larger than a closet, and thus has limitations on how much it can store. It also tends to be part of the main living space, and therefore does not offer the temperature advantages of a traditional larder.

A refrigerator/freezer would obviously be limited to colder foods, and is certainly limited on storage space.

A root cellar’s ideal temperature is is in the high 30*F range, but more importantly, has a very high humidity level. This makes it an ideal storage space for fruits, melons, and fresh herbs, and other produce that is known to “dehydrate” overtime. It actually offers many of the conveniences of a refrigerator, however the frequency that a refrigerator is opened prevents it from keeping the high humidity levels necessary in a root cellar. A root cellar’s humidity is also easier to control based on its design, or even the simple addition of pans of water. The root cellar also uses no electricity to maintain the cool temperatures, since it’s generally based on the geothermal coolness of the earth.

“Larder” is a bit of an old fashioned term. The simple definition is “a room or space designated for food storage”. Today, you would more commonly hear a term such as pantry, or even refrigerator. Some people confuse it with a root cellar, but they’re really separate uses. A larder tends to be a darker, cooler room, ideally in the 50 to low 60°F range, which is ideal for storing shelf stable items such as dry ingredients (ie beans, rice, flour, grains,etc), canned foods, and traditionally, farmers even found the space useful for storing things like salted meats and fish. It also provides an ideal space for produce not necessarily needing refrigeration, such as potatoes, sweet potatoes, onions, garlic, and dried herbs. We have found it an ideal location to store our surplus of eggs, and have eaten eggs over six months old from the larder, with no problem! If the temperature is low enough, it can even create a cheese cave environment for homemade cheeses. A larder offers many options for food storage. Many people have created such a space in a corner of the basement, without even realizing they’re using the principles of a larder.

Mind you, there are exceptions to the ways we store food, such as the time needed for storage, the exact varieties of produce, and of course, the climate in your region. Additionally, I did not even begin to touch on the details of construction. For example, proper ventilation is key in both a larder and a root cellar—especially if produce is going to be stored in them. Many fruits and vegetables produce ethylene gas as part of the ripening process, and this gas will not only hasten the ripening of produce stored, but too much building up In The air can also be toxic to you!

This is just a basic summary of the different uses. However, a good larder and root cellar should be considered necessities in an off grid or self-sufficient home!

(Note that 1st photo is just an internet stock photo and NOT mine, showing a traditional root cellar. The second photo is our larder, still under construction.)

We actually had SNOW in SOUTHERN ILLINOIS this morning!
04/08/2022

We actually had SNOW in SOUTHERN ILLINOIS this morning!

I thought some of you Mustang lovers might be interested in this info.  I have done genetic testing through Etalon, and ...
04/07/2022

I thought some of you Mustang lovers might be interested in this info. I have done genetic testing through Etalon, and get updates from them. Today, I received this email describing new genetic testing available to help you identify herd info for your mustang. It would likely be especially useful for unbranded mustangs. Check it out!

04/07/2022

Totally not farm related, but our family sport is soccer. Our 15 year old, Mikayla, plays some tough defense. I like to think being a farm girl contributes to that toughness! Tonight, the other team left their mark on her, but she cowboy’d up and kept playing!

Life is crazy busy between rainstorms lately!  Sean and I, with a bit of help from Kyla, have been continuing the finish...
04/06/2022

Life is crazy busy between rainstorms lately! Sean and I, with a bit of help from Kyla, have been continuing the finish work on our stalls, adding a good gravel base for drainage, and building the tack room. Between that and shuttling kiddos around to athletic events, I’m also in the middle of goat-kidding season. Let’s just say we are sleeping really well at night! 🤣😴

Kyla’s helping daddy reset his lumber mill today.  Yesterday, he moved it up closer to the remaining log pile, which ope...
03/30/2022

Kyla’s helping daddy reset his lumber mill today. Yesterday, he moved it up closer to the remaining log pile, which opened up the lower half of my permanent garden area. Now I just have to get some leveling done, build some boxes, and start planting!

I got to spend a morning with a blast from my recent past!  This morning, I drove a few cities over to help haul Grace t...
03/25/2022

I got to spend a morning with a blast from my recent past! This morning, I drove a few cities over to help haul Grace to a vet up in Mt. Vernon, where it had also been arranged for a founder-experienced farrier to meet up with us. Apparently, Grace has enjoyed her “retirement” a little too much—becoming quite bored and, well, just a plain ‘ole jerk for her handler most of the time. It has been about 9 months since her last radiographs were done, so the home we gave her to wanted to do a full work up. The vet and farrier spent 2.5 hours with Grace (and 2 rounds of sedation to calm her impatience!). They took “before trim” X-rays, gave her a very aggressive trim based on those pictures, then did more “after trim” X-rays. They used hoof markers, did angle measurements, and drew blood for testing. The vet gave her a good exam, and checked her overall condition. While it doesn’t seem her coffin bone angles have improved much, they also haven’t worsened on the “retired” schedule. In fact, they are holding up quite well. Grace, on the other hand, is really needing a job. The vet, farrier, and owner all agreed that retired life just isn’t suiting her mentally and she is becoming too bored, disrespectful, and too much of a handful. They all feel I should take her back and fully immerse her into a normal training program, and just see how she handles it. Now for the big meeting with the CEO of this Red Gate Farm…..😁 (that would be Sean).

Just A Sunday Afternoon Adventure Story:As we were driving down a wooded lane, on the way to church this morning, Nate s...
03/20/2022

Just A Sunday Afternoon Adventure Story:

As we were driving down a wooded lane, on the way to church this morning, Nate suddenly and excitedly yelled out, “There’s a sheep lost in the woods.” Anyone who knows Nate knows that you generally don’t question something he sees or smells, no matter how crazy it seems. He then added, “it looked pretty young, we should check it out”.

We are farmers, so there is a lot of practicality in our animal-rescue decisions. We know from several past experiences that sheep are nearly impossible to catch when frightened, but none of us had the heart to leave a little lamb on its own, in a forest full of predators, and on a Sunday, no less! (After all, Even Jesus spoke of returning for the little lost lamb, so who are we to do differently?!) So, we turned around to check it out.

We arrived to find a young-looking, possibly yearling aged lamb peeking through the brush at us. It was quickly obvious it wasn’t friendly and wasn’t in an emergency situation, so we decided to let a neighbor know and head on to church.

We checked again when we returned home, and he was still there, only this time, we got a better view. And boy, did I feel stupid! It wasn’t a young lamb at all, but a middle-age buck goat! Ok, so he was white and about the size of a Nigerian Dwarf goat, so easy mistake. This meant we had a better shot at rescuing him though.

Always up for adventure, the older kids and Sean baled out of the van and Ruth, Kyla, and me headed home for supplies. I leashed up one of our young does (seriously, I’ve never known any buck to resist a pretty girl!) and grabbed a bucket of grain (most boys can’t resist food either!)—as well as some less “churchy” clothes for Mikayla, who was wearing a dress (not that it usually matters to a farm girl!).

I returned to the location, Mikayla quickly changed, and we got my doe and the grain across the creek.—I forgot to mention the only way to get near this guy was to cross a wide, fast flowing creek via stepping from rock to rock, and climb a 10 ft wall of mud with thorny brush at the top! Perfect goat territory! While they proceeded to lure the buck, I drove down the road looking for possible owners (and met a few further out neighbors along the way!). No luck on my part, so I returned.

Shortly after I returned, Mikayla had managed to set up a scenario to tempt the untamed buck closer. Anyone who’s known Mikayla for a while knows she has a reputation for earning the trust of wild animals and catching fleeing critters. She has caught and tamed wild cats, called bluebirds to land on her shoulder, and is probably the best chicken catcher on the planet! She can out-dive even the best athletes when an animal is involved! And her reputation held. She suddenly went from a very still crouch, flew through the air (and a couple of briars) and grabbed the bucks front leg (unfortunately realizing she had also grabbed a thorny vine with his leg). She knew from experience it was her only chance, as these critters are smart enough not to allow you close enough for a second attempt if you fail, so she held on. That buck exploded violently into the air, bucking and rolling like the best of rodeo beasts, with Mikayla just holding on for dear life (mostly his, even though he didn’t understand that)! Her thorn-pricked hand was leaving streaks of blood down his white fur, but she still held on. By this point, anyone within half a mile probably thought a cougar was eating this goat alive, based on the terrified guttural screams coming out of his mouth, but she held on.

For the record, we never want to stress or frighten an animal, but the simple fact is that this little goat would likely suffer a painful death by predation if we didn’t rescue him, so sometimes you just do what you have to do!

She finally managed to get up on her knees and catch the goat mid-leap with her other arm, wrapping him in a bear hug, and allowing him to calm down. This whole process took about 4 very long seconds. And then all was quiet. Until Mikayla, still hugging the mature buck, yelled out “Definitely a buck! He stinks!!!! And you had to bring my GOOD jeans?!”

She managed to get a makeshift leash on his neck (as a backup restraint—not to actually lead him anywhere), and Nate took over leading our heavily pregnant doe away from the strange buck (we tried to limit any contact since we don’t know anything about this boy and they can transfer diseases). We then had to semi-hog-tie the buck to control his wild sporadic attempts to escape, as Sean, Mikayla, Nate, and I then proceeded to form a human chain and pass the buck along down the steep, muddy drop across the creek, up the far side hill, and finally into the rear of our van. As Mikayla got him settled in, he proceeded to give her hand an angry, powerful head but as a thanks for her efforts.

After a couple more unsuccessful attempts to find an owner, I posted it out on Facebook and we took him home. Mystery buck is the first official resident of our new horse stalls (still keeping him distant from our mob of goats), and is a freeloading mouth to feed. (I’m a little short on hay if anyone has some Alfalfa to spare?!)

So, to close this little afternoon adventure, if you live in the Creal Springs area, or know anyone who does, please spread the word that we have a goat and would really like to find his owner!

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Marion, IL

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We are a horse-powered, sustainable permaculture farm, striving to raise our children, grow our business, and become more God-sufficient (as opposed to self-sufficient, all while improving the soils and surrounding natural blessings we have been given.

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We're so proud to welcome Red Gate Farm to our Cavallo Community! They train and adopt out mustangs, and they also have a functioning farm powered by draft horses! We highly recommend following them to see what they get up to! :)
They're really doing it! A simpler life, producing their own chemical-free food on their draft horse-powered farm! Lots of work, but lots of rewards to be had, and the Londigran Family wouldn't have it any other way. Thanks for making us your boot of choice, Red Gate Farm, it's a true honor.
Danielle Londrigan Couldn't Bear to Send this Horse Back... Danielle set out to buy a workhorse for Red Gate Farm. She was presented with a sadly neglected animal that not only was in no shape to work, but that she wasn't even sure could be saved! This video is the story of a horse-savvy woman who just couldn't turn a horse away, knowing she was its only chance: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gtxvGPVHqLA About Danielle Londrigan and the Red Gate Farm Family: When Danielle and her family decided to start up a draft horse-powered farm a few years ago, many folks who knew them thought they had lost their minds! They worked to combine Danielle's experience as a vet tech and horse trainer, and her degree in farm business management along with her husband Sean's business and engineering background. These skills, bound with research gathered about natural, chemical, and drug-free farming gave them a good start. Danielle believes that the horse was created with an amazing hoof, which provides all the support, cushion, traction, and blood-pumping action required. And that, if not used properly, metal shoes and hoof nails can damage hooves over time and cause lameness in a horse. They allow their horses to run barefoot to ensure their hooves stay in the best condition possible. However, if more protection is required, they prefer to use Cavallo Boots as they can be removed when not working.
1st ride! Come on out & enjoy a ride around the lake with Red Gate Farm. #winterlandholidaylights #hrz #horses #santa
Tonight's Red Gate Farm horse-drawn carriage rides have been CANCELLED, due to shifting heat/humidity which can be harmful to the horses, coupled with the potentially severe weather headed our way. They apologize for any inconvenience and weather-willing, will you see back downtown next Friday night!
What better way to spend a summer evening than in a horse drawn carriage ride through Downtown Springfield? Red Gate Farm is offering carriage rides on Friday evenings from 5:30-9:00 through July and August. The rides are $50 for a thirty-minute long ride through Downtown Springfield, including the Lincoln Home National Historic Site. Make sure to reserve your spot for the opportunity to experience Springfield in a new way!
What better way to spend a summer evening than in a horse drawn carriage ride through Downtown Springfield? Red Gate Farm is offering carriage rides on Friday evenings from 5:30-9:00 through July and August.
What better way to spend a summer evening than in a horse drawn carriage ride through Downtown Springfield? Red Gate Farm is offering carriage rides on Friday evenings from 5:30-9:00 through July and August.
GOOD MORNING FROM NM
Thank you for beautiful ride
A beautiful ride, thsnk you