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Featured Farming and Homesteading

Discussion in 'Education and Employment' started by Greatshield17, Feb 5, 2021.

  1. Greatshield17

    Greatshield17 Catholic Nerd V.I.P Member

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    I'm seriously thinking of becoming a Farmer or Homesteader. (I'm like 95-98% sure of this)

    Even before this whole Covid-thing hit, I wanted to like find some kind of part-time work or volunteer thing I could do to support farmers out of respect for them. Now with this whole Covid-thing running about, I find myself wanting to be as independent as possible. While the small town I live in is fairly urbanized, I do live in a remote region and thus, having access to farmland is fairly easy for me, even with a kind of low budget right now.

    I know farming is hard but hey, it's a great way to get in shape. So far my plan is to to grow what I can, with what little space I have at my current residence for this year, and make whatever connections I can with the local farming and homesteading community in this area. (That'll probably be the hardest part of this plan of mine.)

    In this thread I want to know what there is to know about farming and homesteading, does anyone here have any ideas or experience?
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2021
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  2. George Newman

    George Newman Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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  3. Wolfsage

    Wolfsage In training to be Wolf King.

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    Yeah. Put a fence up. Everything eats what you are going to grow. So expect animal intrusion. Next check the soil. See if it's good for growing. Dig into it. Black soil is the best. Check seed packets for best growing times. Understand you will be weeding it constantly. Ants will also be a problem
     
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  4. OkRad

    OkRad μῆνιν ἄειδε θεὰ Πηληϊάδεω Ἀχιλῆος οὐλομένην V.I.P Member

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    I would go to one of the small farming schools. I tried it, and it's harder than it seems :-O
     
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  5. Tom

    Tom Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    source.gif

    Those darn ants!

    ;)
     
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  6. hatfullofrain

    hatfullofrain Well-Known Member

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    I second this. This is how I began my life, living on a homestead. This is not where my childhood ended because my parents struggled with it. It is hard, hard work. My parents moved on to more mainstream work.
     
  7. Magna

    Magna Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I'm scaling up my gardening interest into a market garden/farm. My hope is to "quit my day job" and go into full time organic farming.

    I find that I feel better in the long run both physically and mentally if I physically exhaust myself as often as possible. Maybe I'm a masochist, but I feel better mentally when I'm sore at the end of the day from working. Farming is a perfect vehicle for me to do that.
     
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  8. unperson

    unperson Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Had 16 windy acres, with no experience, mainly bought it for the presumed quiet and neighbours further away, mowing, weeds, weed trees, bugs, critters, etc. I got old and had to downsize. Didn't really try farming, just residential.
     
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  9. Ronin82

    Ronin82 Dog Trainer Extraordinaire

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    I used to have an obsessive interest in homesteading, until I tried to grow food plants. Turns out, I do better with the animal side of things, although I still require supervision to take proper care of animals. I realize I miss signs of pain and illness just because...autism. Still, raising meat and fiber animals is a love of mine, and I'm good with critters. Right now, even as I'm getting physically unable to handle farm work, I still want to pair up with an able-bodied individual on a homestead and help with the animals for the rest of my life. Its my life's dream...I wish you better luck with yours than I will ever have with mine.
     
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  10. Greatshield17

    Greatshield17 Catholic Nerd V.I.P Member

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    Would a farm cat be good at catching ants?
     
  11. unperson

    unperson Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    NO.

    Anteaters eat them, I had quite a lot of echidnas, but the ants wildly outnumbered them.
     
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  12. Greatshield17

    Greatshield17 Catholic Nerd V.I.P Member

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    What ant-eater species are there in North America?
     
  13. tree

    tree Blue/Green Staff Member V.I.P Member

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  14. unperson

    unperson Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I think they're Sth American (anteaters) but have seen them kept as exotic pets in the USA. They wouldn't like cold.
     
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  15. Greatshield17

    Greatshield17 Catholic Nerd V.I.P Member

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    I'll be buying a compost bin soon, I'll be looking-up how to compost once I get it but here, I want to ask, are chicken bones and paper-products compostable? We don't have recycling at my condominium so I'm wondering if maybe, I can compost my paper and cardboard; I also eat a lot of chicken and so wonder if the bones are compostable.
     
  16. tree

    tree Blue/Green Staff Member V.I.P Member

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  17. Skittlebisquit

    Skittlebisquit Hope is faith rewarded in advance

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    What a wonderful world. If you put a closed lid container in the freezer bones can go in there. Then boil them for a while. We used to do that to eat it but dont try it, its gross and can get you sick. The boiled bones get dried in the sun and then ground up. Thats how to make bone meal,its for the soil.
    You can raise food in pots. Many people do. Permaculture is fun to learn about but the websites are confusing. The university extension office has awesome information available typically. My compost is in a big plastic barrel,it doesnt make soil really. I add straw or leaves on top of food waste and water. There are holes in the bottom. No bones and no citrus in the compost. Mail order seeds are way way better than local seed packets. I buy from stokes seeds. I say yes you need a fence but the best i ever saw (5.5 bushels of produce) was just a simple circle 12 ft in diameter, it worked great. Look for how much light you get. Beat a stake in and tie a bit of yarn around it at 3ft off the ground. Look to see when the yarn is in the sun. Its easier to move water to a garden than to move the things blocking light. Check out cannibis growing technology, the fabric pots and all work great for growing food.
     
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  18. tree

    tree Blue/Green Staff Member V.I.P Member

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    @Skittlebisquit
    "Thats how to make bone meal,its for the soil."

    Or as a supplement for the chickens.

    After they've ingested it, they'll give you manure which
    you can use to heat up your compost.
     
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  19. zozie

    zozie Well-Known Member

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    From the kitchen side of things, i.e. preserving, making from scratch, etc., the biggest thing I have found to help is to keep track of how much time it takes to prepare food and then plan accordingly. We don't have space for a garden but I cook a lot of food from scratch. This means sourcing whole foods and then setting aside time to buy ingredients.

    Dry beans get soaked overnight, then put in the instant pot, then the stove for frijoles. Roughly 20 hours between dry bean and prepared product.

    Homemade chai base is 10 minutes to prepare herbs, 3-5 hours to simmer, 20 minutes to strain and put in jars. Up to 5.5 hours from start to finish.

    Homemade granola is an hour to cook, plus a trip to a specific store that sells the ingredients I need to cook. Total time with the shopping trip, up to 2.5 hours.

    Time management has made a big difference, and planning has, too.

    My father grows tomatoes over a 6,500 sq ft space, and he's out there all day every day. I was his assistant and helped him with the planning and execution of tasks. He took classes at a local farm and got his master gardener's certification.

    The know-how will save you lots of time, though he still experiments and makes mistakes and says to be patient. Sometimes whole plants are lost to blight or other issues. But he keeps going because he loves it. And his days are usually 12 hours or more.
     
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  20. Magna

    Magna Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    You cook like I do, Zozie. I've been making food from scratch all my life. I enjoy it and consider the time involved to me meditative and rewarding rather than work. I've found pressure canning, water bath canning and dehydrating to be my best methods for preserving the harvest.

    I dehydrate homemade applesauce in the fall from apple trees into a fruit leather and then rehydrate it as needed to make whole wheat carrot applesauce muffins in the winter. The kids love them. I sweeten them with molasses. It takes 32 grams of the apple leather to 1 cup of boiling water in a jar to make 1 cup of applesauce. I let the jar cool and then put it in the refrigerator for a few days to fully rehydrate.

    I also share your Dad's interest in gardening!
     
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