Farming and Agriculture

Barn – a farm building – granero – Were you born in a barn? – Close the door! Have you ever been to a barn dance?
Cattle – animals like cows and oxen – buey – used for meat or milk

Poultry – chickens and turkeys, etc.

Livestock – ganado
Dairy = made from milk – vaquería (farm), lechería (store, shop), dairy product – producto lacteo
Crops – cosecha, cultivo We had a bad corn crop this year. Maize is an important crop. (sweetcorn, corn on the cob)
Crop rotation – The practice of rotating use of different fields from crop to crop each year, to avoid exhausting the soil.
Harvest – cosecha, cosechar
‘A bumper harvest’ = a very good harvest
Vintage – Cosecha de vino
To pick – escoger, coger – pick flowers, fruit, grapes. You can pick grapes from a vine which grows in a vinyard.
Drought – sequía – Did you know that Spain imported water by ship in 2008?
Drought in Spain’s northeastern region of Catalonia grew so severe in 2008 that Barcelona began importing water by ship from France.
Soil – tierra – erosion
Fertile land (producing crops)
Fertilize – fertilizar – fertilizer – fertilizante
Irrigation – irrigacíon, reigo
Orchard (fruit trees) an apple orchard, a cherry orchard
ripe – maduro
Pesticide (chemicals that you spray on crops)
Hay – heno – (dried grass)
Hay bale/bale of hay – paca de heno
Straw – paja

To plough – arar
To plant – plantar, sembrar – to sow seeds
To sow – sembrar. “To sow the seeds of…doubt – duda/unrest – inquietud”
To reap – segar/cosechar. “To reap the rewards”= to benefit from good work/planning
“You reap what you sow”


to farm something out – to send work to someone to be done away from one’s normal place of business; to subcontract work. “We farmed the podcasting editing out.”

a funny farm – a hospital for people who are mentally ill
Example: My grandmother had to send my uncle to the funny farm when she couldn’t take care of him at home anymore.
Note (¡OJO!): This is a humorous or funny expression, but could be considered rude by some people.

I’m so hungry I could eat a horse – to be very hungry

until the cows come home – for a very long time
I could record podcasts until the cows come home!

the last (final) straw – the last of a series of events/annoyances/disappointments that lead a person to losing his or her patience/temper/hope
“He’s been late a few times, but this is the last straw!” “Yesterday my neighbours were partying until 3pm. This was the last straw. I called the police.
From the proverb: “It is the last straw that breaks the camel’s back”

spring chicken – a young person
I’m no spring chicken!

to make hay while the sun shines – (hay – heno) to take the opportunity to do something when the time and conditions are right – Work was going really well, so I decided to make hay while the sun shines and keep working for another 3 hours.

don’t put all your eggs in one basket – don’t make everything dependent on one thing (same in Spanish)

to reap what you sow – every action has a consequence; what you do comes back to you one way or another. If you treat your friends badly, you won’t have any friends. ‘What goes around comes around)
This expression is usually used in a negative sense. (reap – cosechar “to reap the benefits of a situation = see the fruit)

to take the bull by the horns – to be brave and confront difficult situations
If you’re unhappy in your job, perhaps you take the bull by the horns and leave your company.

*Dispones de más PODCAST en inglés publicados en los cuadernos anteriores
a los que puedes acceder directamente así como al índice de su contenido.


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