New to this forum & Farming

Concho, AZ

Hi All, I'm new to this forum and farming.This has always been a dream.I was raised on a farm but left many years ago.Recently my WWs parents bought 40 acres and said lets start a farm.We found 40 acres in north east AZ with water piped to all four corners fenced & cross fenced.Wifes parents are going to get farm loan to start alread talked to F.S.A. I need all the advise I can get. On starting this.

Paris, TN(Zone 6b)

Welcome! The first advice I can give you is read, read, read everything that you can. Lots of good advice and very experienced farmers, market gardeners and home gardeners here on DG.

Second advice: Plan, and have patience :) Unless you have tons of money to throw at the process, it will be hard work and slow to bloom. But always keep your goal in mind!

Congratulations, and welcome to the forum!

Deep East Texas, TX(Zone 8a)

May I ask, what plans do you have for the farm? Livestock or plants or... ?

Welcome to the forum and the farm! 8 )

Panama, NY(Zone 5a)

Welcome back to farming and to the forum. I don't really know much about farming in AZ, we pipe the water out of our fields here most years. My best advice would run this way:

Find your local Cooperative Extension office and talk to the people there. Find your Soil and Water Conservation office and talk to the people there. Find your Natural Resource Conservation Service office and talk to the people there. Talk to any farm neighbors you have.

none of ur business, OK(Zone 5b)

Yes what kind of farming are you doing ?
We are just starting a farm too , we are building from the ground up. One day at a time LOL .
I would say " how do you want to farm ? " what is your goal.? and how much time do you want to put in it . Do you have a day job or is this full time farming.
hope it helps
taynors

Concho, AZ

We are also starting from ground up. just have house and well and fence.Not many people farm here. Mostly Cattle ranches. Back in the old days the spainards farmed in the area .We are Going to do fruits, veggie and nuts.Need all the advice I can get

none of ur business, OK(Zone 5b)

have you looked into Joel Salatin books ? He has one that is called You Can Farm and i think its a great information in it . He has great tools and ideas for f arming.
He is organic , so i don't know if that is somthing your interested in but it still gives plenty of info for any kind of farming you choose.
Do you have nut tree's already on your property ? if you do your lucky lucky lucky. We have a few black walnut tree's and some hickory .
I have 45 acres but only 9 are tillable land the rest is woods.
The main thing i would stress is have a goal written down and how you plan on getting there.
hope it helps oh i lived in AZ for a few yrs in chandler and Avondale over in Phoenix area ,but its a dry heat LOL
sue

Concho, AZ

We are just in the planning stages have done a few things.This is all new.Ma&Pops left the farm in the 60's moved to Calif.Me &The wife met while I was in the U.S.N. married 34 yrs. now.I left the farm at 17 did'nt want anything to do with it.But over the years all over the U.S. on construction.We began to miss the simple life.So we are starting this little family farm.Our 8yrs old grand-daughter has Luekimia.So we are go to grew all fresh & natural foods.The Nuts we intend on growing is Black Walnuts. We are doing 2 acres apples,2 acres cherries, 2acres peaches,5acres vegatables,2 acres melons,2acres scquash&pumpkins,3acres corn. The rest is feed and pasture for animals

none of ur business, OK(Zone 5b)

Those sound like good plans . Black walnuts we have a few of them in our woods. Messy though but good.
With you growing your own food your DGD will enjoy all the good stuff .
I m sorry she has to go through all of that . My dad is a volunteer in Ca at Stanford Childrens Hosp . He see's alot of that.
Funny how we always go back to our roots :) and find simple is better :)
What kind of animals are you thinking of ?

Biggs, KY(Zone 6a)

If you have any horses keep them fenced away from the black walnut trees. It can cause them to founder.

Sue, RI(Zone 6a)

carmensmtdesign, I'm saying a prayer for you and your granddaughter. Hope all is well very soon.
Sue

Biggs, KY(Zone 6a)

And persimmons will cause a horse to colic.

Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

edited to say, I was asking if you already had black walnuts on your property, and I see after reading back a few more threads that you do..

I love to talk about nut trees.

kj

This message was edited Sep 15, 2008 6:56 PM

Brunswick, GA

All Livestock have to be kept away from Black Walnut trees folks!! My best suggestion to you before you buy a single sed, seedling or tree is to go to the cooperative extension office-- their advise is FREEEEE, Also the Soil conservasion district office (also free advise), call any high schools in your area and ask if they have an Agri-science program (and FFA chapter)- most ag teacher are friendly helpful folks, and have kids that need a "project" and check into your state funded Universities and see if they have an Agricultural college. All of these are excellent resources and put them on speed dial!

Make sure you are going to have enough water year round to supply your needs before planting and estimate on a worst case scenario. Water rights out there can be a real bugger! Check with DNR.

Farming as a simpler life-- whoa-- your life just got a whole nw list of worries. Don't get me wrong I am a farm through and through. FFA member and State award winner in HS, owning and operating my own for nearly 30 years plus a Nationally recognized award winning Agri-science teacher and then Vet. Med, I do know what both crop and livestock farming entails. Lots of work to be successful!

Good luck. Study before you make you first move! It will save you lots of heart aches.

Sue, RI(Zone 6a)

And $$$! But what an adventure! :)

Panama, NY(Zone 5a)

to quote Hagar the Horrible, "Ignorance is the mother of adventure!"

But it is a good idea to check out the Co-op Ext. They are there to help.

Sue, RI(Zone 6a)

absolutely! Better to spend the $$$ in the right places.

Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

just_racey,

I'd be interested to know where you found out that information on black walnut trees.

Brunswick, GA

Black Walnut trees (wood, bark, leaves and husk-- not the nut shell) contains juglone which is toxic- You want to kill fish- throw husks in a pond- doesn't take a lot to kill them. I learned this in a wilderness survival course I took as an undergrad. the rest of the don't let livestock consume came from my undergrad animal science classes (don't use black walnut saw dust for bedding!), and vet med classes.

Lynn

Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

just_racey,

I have been grazing cattle around black walnuts for years with no ill effects, as has my family... and I'm certainly not wanting to start one of those threads that cause so many ill feelings.. There are also many farmers/nut growers that have nothing but black walnut trees in silvopasture areas.

http://www.centerforagroforestry.org/practices/sp.asp

I would certainly agree that black walnut trees discourage growth around them.. I have never been able to grow a tomato! I think the walnut trees must taste really terrible! I used to have about 60 goats .. They killed many trees by completely eating around the trunk of the tree , through the cambium layer. They only killed one small walnut tree that way.

none of ur business, OK(Zone 5b)

KathyJo great info
I m decideing on using some of our woods as a pasture area for animals. We have oak manly and maple , hickory and a shag bark tree i think is a hickory ?
i m interested in the link you gave thanks

Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

I still have so much to learn about this.. I am now trying to figure out exactly what type of grass to grow under my trees. One of the pecan experts is telling me to grow perennial rye. Kentucky bluegrass seems to be another grass that will grow under quite a bit of shade. The bigger and older the trees become and the closer they become together the more shade of course..

taynors, Are you thinking of growing the trees for nut crops , for future lumber ?? I am more interested in the nut crops.. so let my trees become fuller and branch out more..

Cattle , will eat down any of the smaller trees that are naturally seeded.. So , If you chose to graze cattle ( which I do ), you will disturb the naturally succession of the forest habitat.

oh.. I could talk about this subject for a REEEallYYY long time..

none of ur business, OK(Zone 5b)

KathyJo oh good so could I !!! I don't know about nut crops . I am just learning about all this .
I only want to do about 1-3 acres of our 37 acres of woods. So they can have shade in the summer. Just to start with and then harvest the trees that we would use as a nut crop . If i can do that . IT won't distrurb to much of it and will help the woods actually . Need to thin out our woods to get more sun in for the oaks and get the maple out . Them eating the maple sapplings is a good thing :) if they eat maple
ok dmail me if you want to talk more about it . Would love to learn more
sue

Panama, NY(Zone 5a)

KathyJo, I want to warn you about the perennial rye grass - once you plant it, you have it forever and everywhere. Stan planted one hayfield with some as part of the mix several years ago. The memory lingers on not only in the field, but in ALL OF MY GARDENS. It is a wonderful colonizer.

tayners, why don't you want the maple? Cows will, to the best of my knowledge, eat most any saplings. You do want to keep them away from black cherry and pin cherry (lumber trees) as any wilted leaves that they would be tempted to eat will kill them.

none of ur business, OK(Zone 5b)

Kathleen the maples are a bit invasive in our woods. They take over and the oak's don't get much sun. So a thinning out is healthier for the woods . We consulted a Forester and he gave us some ideas for a healthy woods.
Do cows like grapvines ? or would that be a goat food ?
we don't have black cherry or any cherry and no black walnuts so we are good there. :)
You are talking wilted leaves of the tree's you mentioned above or wilted leaves in general ? ok stupid question but just want to make sure i m on the right page with y'all :)
this is all good stuff i m learning
I am really interested in Chestnuts tree's . I think they can grow here . A farm in Maryland does them. I hope i can do some.

Fayette, MO(Zone 6a)

Kathleen, Very interesting what you have to say about the perennial rye.. Does it seem invasive then? Do you pasture your cows on it , sounds like you mostly bale it? I can't imagine anything peskier than fescue or tall ragweed...

Taynors, I think the cows will eat down most saplings and grapes.. There are some things my cows don't bother.. buck brush is one.. I do miss the way the goats kept the underbrush down. and I miss the goats eating the bark around the thorn trees.

I like to keep a few cedars around.. Most farmers around here don't like them , but there seems to be something the cows like in cedars and they continue to rub against them..

taynors, chestnuts are great trees.. Are you planning on growing chinese chestnuts, a hybrid type of American Chestnut with more blight resistance? I have a few of each growing in my yard.. but supposedly the blooms don't smell so good when they bloom.. Mine are just one year old trees, started from seed..

I am trying to figure out how to set new trees out in the pasture and set fences up around individual trees.. Cows like to rub against posts etc.. I'm also top grafting some of my trees above the head of my tallest cows and horses.. I finally figured out the easiest place for me to set and do this is on top of the cab of my skid loader.

Panama, NY(Zone 5a)

KJo, the rye grass was(is) in a hayfield. Stan hates it almost as much as I do because it ripens faster than the other grasses and messes with the nutrient values in the hay. We don't have, won't have any fescue, thank heavens. The tall ragweed all got a good shot of RoundUp early and what I didn't spray, Stan mowed. We seem to have quelled it at least. I rmember seeing it in Kentucky for the first time and not even knowing what it was. Then it showed up here a couple of years ago. I think it must have come in either in grass seed or in the corn we buy out of Ohio.

I have a young American chestnut tree, but it's dying. The NYS Chestnut organization has a test plot of trees that are more American than Chinese that are supposed to be immune to the blight. I hope someday to have one of those, or to get some pollen from them for my tree before it's completely gone.

taynors, you must have other than hard or sugar maple. Up here, when we talk maple it is the hard wood. The wilted leaves are specifically cherry leaves.

none of ur business, OK(Zone 5b)

good to know Kathleen on the leaves . Yes ours are the sugar maple. We have a few tree's ready for sugaring , but i don't think i want to do that task just yet.
Yes i m looking at the chinese /american variety of chestnuts. :) I order them from the same person i get their chestnuts from.

Biggs, KY(Zone 6a)

Kathleen
Is the rye grass you are talking about, different from the rye grass that is sown in winter down south? We used it all the time but had to resow every year. Didn't bale it.

Panama, NY(Zone 5a)

There's winter rye that's used as a cover crop and as a green manure, and there's perennial rye grass, it's two separate animals. The perennial rye is a fast maturing hay crop that lasts well, but doesn't play well with the other grasses and clovers.

Biggs, KY(Zone 6a)

The dark green stuff is what we used.

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