Well we are looking at 40 acres in OH . I have two choices. 40 of it all tillabe land or the other side of the road is 9 acres and 31 of it woods.
Here are my ideas
I m really looking and doing my research on Heritage breeds.
veg garden for farmers market
mostly hobby type farming for personal use and 4-H for kids maybe hittng a niche market with some of the meat and cheeses.
I get Hobby Mag
Would love to do pasture raised animals
We are builidng a small log home and barn that is eco friendly and uses the earth for energy.Reclaimed wood ect. Energy effecint as much as possible
I m leaning more for the woods, but need to see if the trees are large trees and could lead to possible funiture, when fallen down from wind or disease.
i would like to know what some of you out there do with your animals and which ones are your favs and not so fav animals to raise.
We are buying 40 acres !!
Hey, taynors, that is exciting! My expertise runs to dairy cows and Border Collies, so I don't think I'd be much help in the livestock area, but we do have a wood and what I've learned over the years is that you will want to look into sustainable harvest. I would suggest finding a forestry expert - check with the local Cooperative Extension - and walk the wood, telling him what you want to do with your trees and how you would like it managed. Timber is as much a crop as anything else you plant and can be managed in several different ways. When you manage it on a minimal cut manner, you take out the trees that have reached the point where they will not appreciate, and that lets the younger trees around them stretch. Waiting for them to fall isn't necessarily beneficial to them or to the rest of the trees. When you take down what you need and what the wood needs, you will have a much healthier stand.
It looks like you already have farmhands ready and willing. Good luck on your choice and purchase.
ooh! 40 acres! sounds wonderful - lots of possibilities. I just have a smallholding (5+ acres) - a flock of chickens, 3 goats...flower gardens and an orchard.
What zone are you in? That might help you sort out a marketing strategy for vegetables/plants. Have you checked out local harvest in your area? (http://www.localharvest.org). I'd go visit other farms in your area and see what's working for them or what niche market is underserved.
love to see more photos
Edited to add: just read your profile - so talented. I can visualize you with kitchen gardens doing cooking classes - herbs, new vegetables etc.
This message was edited Jul 16, 2007 9:05 AM
hey thanks kathleen
yes we are going to walk it and see if it is big enough trees. You have taught me alot , didn't know woods could be looked at as crop. Makes sense . :)
Jersey what kind of goats do you have? good idea on the local harvest, i do know of one guy who is getting certified organic this yr. I will contact him when i get home.I remember right it is zone 5b i m in .
I also want to do some apple trees, peach,plum and maybe cherry trees. yes i do like to do all those things you mentioned and i am a canner !! love it.oh and thanks for the hyperlink, too :)
i will make a thread when we start building , i htink that would be fun.
Lots of ideas to start with here. Probably two or three different threads worth.
Kathleen touched on the firewood. Do you know what type of trees are growing there already. Certainly if you are thinking of them for a heat source, different trees , obviously make different firewood.. burning at different BTU's, and they all certainly split differently. Ash seems the easiest to split, but doesn't put off as much heat as oak..
Will your property have fences? Goats and pigs need incredibly good fences.. I grew up on a hog farm... and could talk at length about raising pigs....
Dave719 raises rabbits.. you could get lots of information from him... haven't seen him post for awhile..
How exciting for you to be moving to the country.. ! you will love it and I hope we see you post lots here on this forum..
ooohhhh i will definetly pick your brains on pigs. !!
yes fences ahahhaha my Dh and i are at different levels on fencing. He is thinking something very ugly, i m thinking wood post.:)
buy yes fencing is going to be a priority.
What kind of pigs did you raise, Or is that a dumb question ? lol :) i would imagine the kind for market ?
I don't know about hte woods yet and what is growing. I don't think much oak in OH, that would be awesome if it where. I love oak trees.
we will walk the property in Aug 4 when i get home to our other house we are trying to sell. Not much happeing in Oh to many layoffs, it is very represed right now. Four houses for sale on our street, none selling or even biting. Maybe a good thing right now.
I m very excited yes. Growing our and maintaing our own food is very exciting. No more store bought meat or vegs
We raised durocs... and had one of the first confinement operations around.. I'm not all that excited about confinement operations.. I wouldn't do it now that's for sure. But we had cropland where we raised corn then put it in bins.. augered the from the bin to the mix mill and then into the hog houses.. farrowing house was in a different facility.
People near here raise pigs in a hoop barn. both ends are open. It has a dirt floor & is bedded with good old straw. Each barn holds 200 animals. They clean after 2 batches of pigs have been there. They market the meat rather than the live pigs. They do very well that way. They go to a couple Farmers Markets in Minneapolis - St. Paul area. They are raising the pigs chemical free. Only medication is 1 iron shot shortly after birth. This is a required thing here if you want pigs to live.
Take a look;
Good luck with your venture!
my goats (Betty, Barney and Fred) are uh, Boer mixes? They are spoiled - that's what they are.
Alot of sustainable farmers in our area forego the 'certified organic' process although they do describe their farm practices...guess organic requires lots of paperwork etc.
I've often thought of supplementing our spring/summer income by raising heirloom vegetable varieties...very hard to find here in 'farm country'
looking forward to hearing and seeing more, Sue.
Sue, I don't have any advice, just a big grin. Ohio, eh? Yay for us Ohioan DGers! :D
Welcome to the farm forum, Taynors. I would definitely go for the property with the trees. Consider firewood costs and if you use a lot of it you will save a big bucks on your heating bill. Trees are definitely a crop, and if you have a lot of mature trees you can hire people, some who log with horses, to take them out leaving the rest to grow better. It is like weeding a garden. Trees left to die are usually rotten in the middle, not the best for firewood and not too good for lumber or posts.
You can build some fences that will be seen from wood, but you will want to use pressure treated posts, and you will find that in a wet climate the wood rails will deteriorate from exposure to the weather.Most people with a limited supply of money use metal posts and wire. Metal posts can be driven in so that eliminates post hole digging except on the corners and for gates, and a wood post would be advisable about every hundred feet or so for stability. Railroad ties work well for these, here they cost about $10 each. The cost of field fencing with a couple strands of barbed wire above it to keep some dogs out and keep your cattle or horses from reaching over the fence and smashing it, is much less than wood unless the wood is free.
Our neighbor raises organic beef and lamb. His ranch is certified by Oregon Tilth which is more than just Oregon. Their standards are very strict, they do surprise inspections, and it took him about 3 years after the initial application before they certified him. That was several years ago so they might have streamlined their application process by now. They tested his water sources, soil, hay, and asked a ton of questions. They had to be sure that he had not used pesticides, herbicides or commercial fertilizer in the past 3 years. He can't use insecticide to control flies on his cattle, any commercial fertilizer in his fields, and if an animal needs a shot of antibiotics it is not considered organic any more and if it is sold it has to go to the regular livestock markets. Keeping animals worm free or at least keeping the worms under control takes a lot of moving animals from one pasture to another to give shed parasite worms time to die before the animals use the pasture again.
While I am in favor of organics, some other designations are easier for the producer to manage, for instance using no growth hormones, fattening the animals on pasture instead of a grain mix with added antibiotics just in case there might be something lurking, etc. A couple of shots of penacillin when he was a week old isn't going to have much of a lasting effect in the meat of a 15 month old steer.
We had an Old MacDonald's kind of farm, cattle, goats, pigs, chickens, turkeys, sheep, garden and orchard. Things are much simplified now, garden, orchard, horses, lease most of our pasture to a neighbor and I work for him in trade for my hay most years.
We did it !! we are officially land owners !! :)
we bought the one with the woosa.
COuldn't bring comp to get pics , we are still down on our internet. GRRR long story :)
SAt we walked around the woods and not alot of big trees . Mostly saplings and brush. It is very boggy and moist , but thier is a high resting are we can build the house on, we hope ,depending on perk testing.
We will clear out two or three acres for the house, leave the nice big trees.
The farmer has a soy crop in now, so we have to wait .
Our old house still needs to sell.
THere is a park right next door, hooray.
I am using my FIL comp so i will check in weekly and keep you updated.
Sue, Congratulations! I think you bought the right property with the woods. We bought 15 acres with 3 wooded areas and 11 acres of hayfield. Since it was impossible to set up near any trees, we put our mobile home where we could get a fantastic view from each window of the surrounding hills. Beautiful, but HOT. No shade at all on our place. We did put the fence up for the goats (Red Boers), so that they have a big pasture and then about 20' into the woods for some heat relief. But their shelter, as well as the hen house are in full sun all day. The chickens free range during the day, so they can find places to hide out where it's a little cooler. I just moved the rabbit hutches to the north side of the house to give them some relief.
Congrats, Sue! You'll love that place! (And getting it set up is one of the best parts of it!)
Hope you keep us informed on how things progress! You have some great ideas, I hope you'll utilize the knowledge of DG folks in helping you out!
Again, way to go!
Robin, something I've seen people do is build an arbor that goes over the mobile home and plant dense vines on it. Do you think that would work for yours or for the critters' shelters?
Gardenwife, Sure would! Great idea! Luckily, our cooling bill isn't too bad, but we have a heat pump that is actually too big for this place. But I'd love to be able to spend more time outside in the summer. The heat is awful here! Only been in the 90's a couple of days, but by end of coming week, almost 100! Thanks!
Congratulations, Taynors. It will be wonderful to get to raise your children in the farm environment. Just be to not make too much of a pet of the butcher animals. That makes them very hard for some people to eat. It doesn't bother others.
Hey Sue... Congrats... Where in OH did you buy??
I'm considering doing the same thing...I'm thinking southern OH or Northern KY if I can find something...
Thanks everyone :)
hahaa just relized i spelled woods wrong lol :)
sorry havn't been here on the thread ,but we still don't have internet, :( .Hoping next week.
SHoe i have learned so much from DGers !! yeah .
Leaf i am looking forward to 4-H projects with my kids and i joined a quilting class, can't have a log home with out quilts . It just aint natural ? :)
msrobin yep i have herd that yo don't name the animals you eat lol :)
Hey Dusty there is another 40 acres right down the road from us " hint hint "wink ;) that one is all tillable and only 3 acres of woods but it has a 1.5 acre pond .I wish i could tell you more of the location, we are between Springfeild and Urbana, if that helps any ?
I will keep you updated as best i can , i m using my FIL comp .
thanks agin everyone for your kind words. I will sure to be asking many questions on animals and building things
take care everyone
Congratulations!! You will LOVE your new land and farm! My vote, for whatever it's worth, is for you to raise heritage breed animals. (That) would be MY dream farm. :) If you google "heritage breed farm" you can read the blogs, stories, and countless sites of other heritage breed farmers. In an effort to help preserve the wonderful heritage breeds of animals that are an important part of our early American history, there are also organizations that help folks get started on developing their own heritage breed farm. From what you posted, I think heritage breeds would be right up your alley! Let us know what you decide to do!! ;)
Well the farmer got his soybeans off last sunday.
We can now go forward and do a perk test.
We are building a log home . It will be tucked in the woods. Which means a really loooooooooong driveway lol :)
we found an Amish builder locally here in OH. We are saving money on the freight and logs. They have their own mill.
It is kinda funny seeing an Amish guy talking on a cell phone, lol :)
I will meet wit him next week .
So i have to build this house while DH is in CHina , lucky me lol :)
We are doing Geothermal unit for our air/heat.
I hope to be build as green as possible.
thats it for now
Whoopee, Sue! Sounds like a great plan. Congrats.
Wonderful! I'd been wondering how things were moving along.
Guess now is the time to start the Before pictures, eh?
Oh yes Shoe ,absolutley !!
i just need to get a digital camera lol so i don't have to carry around my laptop lol :)
I will start wit my reg camera and just get it on CD i guess that would work too.
When we were staking for the new house , i saw a georgous stump with pumpkin orange fungi on it , very cool . wish i had my camera with me then !! Hope it comes back next summer.
I will keep up to date on our project on this thread
thanks for all the well wishes
I have heard saddle mules bring a really good price in Ohio. Might be something to consider. A Jack would also do double duty as a stock protector.
Congrats on your purchase and move. It sounds like a little piece of Heaven. Enjoy and good luck to the kids with the 4H projects.
Caj thanks . Never thought of a saddle mule . Good to know. I will have to look into it.
Someone I worked with has mules near Newark. I wish I could remember her last name so you could hook up with her.
What do saddle mules do? or what are they used for .?
I am guessing riding mules ? or working mules ?
I m meeting the builder today, he is amish. I will ask him if he know of any.
He is a nice person.
If all else fails their is always google lol
When one speaks of a saddle mule in this area, they are talking about an "easy gaited" mule used for riding. You get them by breeding a jackass to a gaited mare. The "easy gaited" breeds include TWH, RMH, Paso Fino, ect. Saddle mules are popular for trail riding and showing. They are very comfortable, durable mounts and as a mule will not do anything to get itself hurt, they make very safe trail mounts. They do take a bit of specialized training as they are not simply horses with long ears and they think a bit differently than horses so they have to be handled accordingly. They never forget anything. They are a good investment. A friend in our saddle club has several. At the last show our club sponsored, the judge offered him $10,000 for one of his mules and he turned it down.
WOW !!! Would they be good as first rider friendly ? my Dh wants a horse for our kids. I grew up riding horses so i know the cost and everthing , he doesn't. lol
I was thinking mini's for our kids for first timers, though they can't ride them, they can do carting and showing and join clubs .
We have a freind who does mustang rescue and has a few he said we can have cheap lolol :) define cheap i tell him :)
Hmmm your tempting my interest on the saddle mules. I will have to look into it more, they sound great to ride .I miss trail riding.
Well our perk didn't go yesterday. The farmer is at a snail pace. His son was supposed to do it , welll he was a no show. Great :0
They didn't line up the health dept either. uhg
tomorrow is a new day
Perk passed !!! weeee
So now off i go to do the survey, then get bids for a very looooooong driveway lolol :)
still packing our house . we sold it. Just got to close and be out by Dec 1 and live in a apt till log home is built. then i get to do it all over again lol move it to the new house . yikes
Now i just need to think of a name for our farm
Austannah Farms ?
or i was thinking of something in a differnt meaning for Peace what is another word for peace
I know Shalom but i think that has been takin. lol " )
see you all soon
i will keep you up to date and i will get pics i promise !!
Good news, one step at a time. How long is a looooooong driveway?
I wouldn't think a saddle mule would be a good first mount. Mules take some special handling (sp?). A friend of mine got 2 nice mules today. A black and a bay. Looks like they are going to be nice rides. One will be pretty fast as it is out of a standardbred mare. We are looking at a molly mule we may buy to resell. We can get a good price on her but I'm not sure I care to deal with her right now. I already have 7 horses I have to ride right now. Those are our horses and I ride for a friend also. I stay busy to say the least. LOL
Start with a nice dependable, well trained, gentle horse. Mules are nothing for the average person to fool with, and definitely not for beginners or kids. They don't think or react to things like a horse, and can have very stubborn streaks. A person handling a mule has to be able to convince the mule that what you want him to do is really his idea. I know an endurance rider who rides mules, they are definitely a challenge. Mules never forget what they percieve to be an injustice, and will get even eventually.