Meet the Sheep Who Inspired the Green Grass, Still Waters Characters

The real “Woolfred Lamb,” the main character in Green Grass, Still Waters.


was born on our farm in January, 2013.  His mother’s name was Ivy.  Since Ivy was not strong enough to take care of Woolfred after his birth, (unusual for Gulf Coast sheep), we raised him on a bottle while she got into a healthy condition.  Woolfred went with us to several public events, not minding the attention, since he was so use to being around people!  The first 2 pictures below are from the night he was born.  You can see he was about the same size as our cat, Edward, but when Woolfred stood up, his long legs made him taller than Edward.  Woolfred’s coloring in the book, is patterned after Barney, another lamb we had with those exact markings.  Linda and I thought the brown ears and nose would make the character look distinctive, so the Woolfred in the book is really a combination of 2 lambs we had on Restoration Farm.  Notice Woolfred has a tail.
Woolfred newborn Woolfred and Edward

Woolfred tree
Woolfred grazing under his favorite tree, where he may have had a few conversations with Dotty Spot and April Brown.

Dotty Spot

is one of the Icelandic sheep I got unexpectedly Christmas Eve, 2012.  They had been well cared for at the farm of my shepherd friend who brought them to Louisiana, but it was no longer safe for them to stay there with his horses.  They were

Dotty Spot
The real Dotty Spot.

unaccustomed to being handled very much, so the new sheep and I had a long process of getting to know one another!
Green Grass, Still Waters was inspired in part by an experience my daughter Sherilyn and I had of chasing Dotty Spot through the wild woods behind out house.  She had escaped through the barbed wire fence, and was not eager to trust me enough to follow me back to the pasture.  After losing sight of her, and getting lost ourselves, Sherilyn and I finally made it back to the barn to discover Dotty had already delivered herself home, because she was drawn to April Brown (who was contented to stay with us) and didn’t want to leave her.  I always loved Dotty’s trademark spot across  her shoulders.  Her color pattern is known as “badger face”.

Dotty Spot (middle) and April Brown (left) enjoying winter hay next to a Gulf Coast flockmate (right).

April Brown

trusted us more, because she arrived at our farm ahead of the rest of the flock.  She had a little more time with us, and had learned to trust us from watching the other sheep.  April Brown and Dotty Spot, really were best friends, and spent many hours grazing and napping together, always seeming to prefer and choose one another’s company above others. April’s mother, Katy Brown, and twin brothers Cardigan and Truffle are part of our flock, too.  They have always been remarkable sheep, obviously quicker at problem solving and always being the first to let me know when they want something.  They have their own way of communicating what they want both vocally and with body language.  Truffle loves to eat oranges, crushing the fruit and holding it up in his mouth so the juice runs down his throat.

Click to learn more about Green Grass, Still Waters

Kelli C. Miller