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Communicating with Myself - The Farm Plan

 
pollinator
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Location: Scioto county, Ohio, USA - Zone 6b
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Heart of The Earth Farm Plan

Main Elements:

   Market Garden
   Greenhouse/ Nursery
   Herb Garden
   Food Forest
   Pigs
   Pastured Meat Chickens
   Egg Laying Hens
   Feed Shed with Rainwater Harvesting
   Outdoor Kitchen
   Duck Pond

Detailed Descriptions:

   Market Garden
   Most plants are transplanted in as plugs from the Greenhouse, except corn, peas, bush beans, and potatoes. The garden is not dug or ploughed, but a broad fork is used for aeration as needed. The garden uses Ruth Stout Method mulching to control weeds, and companion planting to control pests. The spacing is square foot method.
   Greenhouse/ Nursery
   The greenhouse is a PVC hoop house and will eventually be heated. The nursery is an area by the greenhouse that is used for potted trees before they are added to the Food Forest. The greenhouse will be used for growing cucurbitae once the seedlings are transplanted out into the gardens.
   Herb Garden
   This will be a raised hugelkultur bed between the house and street specifically for perennial herbs and flowers. Both Culinary and medicinal herbs will be planted.
   Food Forest
   This will be the largest project and will likely be ongoing for some time. Tree seeds are planted in pots in the nursery and are grown until about 2 ft tall before being transplanted into the Food Forest. Meat chickens will be used to selectively disturb areas before planting new trees, shrubs, insectaries, vines, etc. Leaf fall will be allowed to remain to control weeds, but no other action will be taken in regards to weeds. When trees die, they will be cut down for firewood, but the ashes will be returned to the FF.
   Pigs
   Pigs will only be 2 or 3, and be semi-pastured in a large pen. The pen will be electric fenced. The rainwater off the feed shed will be for watering the pigs. They will be given free choice minerals, a grain ration, and slop. When they are getting ready to be slaughtered, we will feed them the buggy fruits and nuts from the FF.
   Pastured Meat Chickens
   Each of the 2 meat chicken tractors will contain 26 chickens and 1-2 other birds such as goose or turkey. The CTs will be put out to pasture and be used to prepare new areas in the FF.
   Egg Laying Hens
   This will be a coop and run near the house so that grandma can gather the eggs if I’m not around. A BSFL digester will supply a feed supplement and increase the quality of the eggs. We will have 12 hens.
   Feed Shed with Rainwater Harvesting
   The Shed will be storage for feed, and the roof and a large trough will be the water source for the adjacent pigs.
   Outdoor Kitchen
   The Outdoor kitchen will consist of a brick BBQ, a rocket oven, and 2 rocket burners on the back porch covered by a timber frame pergola. There is also a detached smokehouse which is near the driveway next to the neighbor’s pasture.
   Duck Pond
   The Duck pond is where we will raise our ducks. We have to fish out all the turtles first, but we will be keeping our flock of ducks there eventually. The pond is part of the FF, and the ducks will range in the part of the FF that is near the pond.

The first year (June-Dec 2019):

   Build Pig Enclosure
   Begin to plant FF
   Cover market garden in old hay
   Build green house
   Clean and repair feed shed, add rainwater harvesting
   Build Raised Beds
   Start Hunting

The Second Year (2020):

   Start Seeds in green house
   Get Pigs’ feed pans and water trough
   Get hose hooked up to water supply
   Get pigs and feed
   Plant garden, plant cucurbitae in green house
   Start trees from seed and from rooted cuttings
   Raise pigs
   Build Smokehouse and get butchery supplies
   Harvest garden
   Butcher hogs

The Third Year (2021):

   Do gardens as per previous year
   Do pigs as previous year
   Add chickens to the mix, 26 in each meat tractor and 12 in the egg coop
   Plant the food forest more extensively
   Start Work on outdoor kitchen
   Go hunting

The Fourth Year (2022):

   Do livestock as before
   Do gardens as before
   Add more diversity to FF
   Finish Outdoor Kitchen

The fifth year (2023):

   Do livestock as before
   Do gardens as before
   Add more diversity to FF
   Start Ducks in FF

The Sixth year and Beyond (2024-):

   Build A better greenhouse
Farm-Plan-version-3.jpg
Farm Plan version 3
Farm Plan version 3
 
master pollinator
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Sounds pretty good. My only question was where the duck pond is going to be? Is it the little red circle on your map?

You could dispense with building that, saving you money and just using a kiddie pool. Keep in mind, unless the pond is pretty big, the ducks will foul (pun intended) the water pretty fast, so it has to be changed out quite often. But I understand wanting a pond too.
 
Ryan Hobbs
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Travis Johnson wrote:Sounds pretty good. My only question was where the duck pond is going to be? Is it the little red circle on your map?

You could dispense with building that, saving you money and just using a kiddie pool. Keep in mind, unless the pond is pretty big, the ducks will foul (pun intended) the water pretty fast, so it has to be changed out quite often. But I understand wanting a pond too.



I already have a pond. It is in the elbow of the Food Forest. It isn't outlined individually, but lies within the FF.
 
Travis Johnson
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Ryan Hobbs wrote:

Travis Johnson wrote:Sounds pretty good. My only question was where the duck pond is going to be? Is it the little red circle on your map?

You could dispense with building that, saving you money and just using a kiddie pool. Keep in mind, unless the pond is pretty big, the ducks will foul (pun intended) the water pretty fast, so it has to be changed out quite often. But I understand wanting a pond too.



I already have a pond. It is in the elbow of the Food Forest. It isn't outlined individually, but lies within the FF.



Oh my word, I am so dumb. I kind of saw it, but I kind of did not, so I guess I need glasses.

Are you looking to make this a Homestead, Retirement Farm, or go into full-time farming?
 
Ryan Hobbs
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Location: Scioto county, Ohio, USA - Zone 6b
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Travis Johnson wrote:

Ryan Hobbs wrote:

Travis Johnson wrote:Sounds pretty good. My only question was where the duck pond is going to be? Is it the little red circle on your map?

You could dispense with building that, saving you money and just using a kiddie pool. Keep in mind, unless the pond is pretty big, the ducks will foul (pun intended) the water pretty fast, so it has to be changed out quite often. But I understand wanting a pond too.



I already have a pond. It is in the elbow of the Food Forest. It isn't outlined individually, but lies within the FF.



Oh my word, I am so dumb. I kind of saw it, but I kind of did not, so I guess I need glasses.

Are you looking to make this a Homestead, Retirement Farm, or go into full-time farming?



Homestead. But I will make money off my surplus. In my area, there are no places to buy vegetables for 13 miles to the east and 75 miles to the west. I plan to partner with a local business to use their parking lot as a mini farmer's market. I'm still in prelim talks with them, so nothing concrete yet. But my angle is that it would be good for both of us, we don't sell the same stuff, so people coming to buy from one of us might stop by the other one while they are at it, because frankly, there is nowhere else to shop. I was originally going to sell at the Portsmouth Farmer's Market, but Portsmouth has access to fresh food. My area does not.
 
Travis Johnson
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I see.

That is an ambitious overall plan when considering working full-time as well, but it can be done. I did that, work full time that is while I got my sheep farm going. I was never sure how I did it, but the end of the year I would look back and be rather amazed how much had been accomplished, so I know first hand things like this can be done.

I like that you have a well laid out Farm Plan. I think that is really good.
 
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Thank you for sharing. I am  planning to create a permaculture community in the next 5 years or so and this certainly gave me what to think about....plan for.
 
Ryan Hobbs
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Travis Johnson wrote:I see.

That is an ambitious overall plan when considering working full-time as well, but it can be done. I did that, work full time that is while I got my sheep farm going. I was never sure how I did it, but the end of the year I would look back and be rather amazed how much had been accomplished, so I know first hand things like this can be done.

I like that you have a well laid out Farm Plan. I think that is really good.



I don't have a job. I'm disabled due to Schizophrenia. I can't work a regular job. But I have a small stipend and I want to be independent. I'm hoping that by becoming a Gert, I can be in charge of my destiny.

Edited to add: The ducks are only there because Grandma and I really love duck meat for our holiday dinners. We brine the ducks whole for several days, then hot smoke them or roast them in the oven and get the skin crispy and collect the drippings. It makes a good turkey look like slop.
 
Ryan Hobbs
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Mimi Hinkley wrote:Thank you for sharing. I am  planning to create a permaculture community in the next 5 years or so and this certainly gave me what to think about....plan for.



If I had more space, there would be more projects. I have thought about what I would do if I had more than 2 acres, and frankly I would put in more food forest. I will post my spreadsheet for plant varieties for your consideration. I'm in the Ohio River Valley in zone 6b with Loess Soil. So you may not find it all to be applicable, but some of it might be useful.

Download link for my Spreadsheet:
https://we.tl/t-Yt3yM2p1R1
 
pollinator
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Ryan - very nice. I'm in a similar boat being on disability due to mental illness. My plans are similar, though I'm not looking at providing much income for us. Probably only enough for our tax status, hopefully, growing native woodland seeds. We are also planning on chickens for eggs, food forest, greenhouse (one that came with the property) and hopefully in the future a better one attached to my daughters's house. We are looking at getting goats for milk and brush clearing, and pigs for meat.

Look forward to seeing your progress.
 
Ryan Hobbs
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Stacy Witscher wrote:Ryan - very nice. I'm in a similar boat being on disability due to mental illness. My plans are similar, though I'm not looking at providing much income for us. Probably only enough for our tax status, hopefully, growing native woodland seeds. We are also planning on chickens for eggs, food forest, greenhouse (one that came with the property) and hopefully in the future a better one attached to my daughters's house. We are looking at getting goats for milk and brush clearing, and pigs for meat.

Look forward to seeing your progress.



Mine probably won't make much money, but I'm not doing it to get rich. But $770 a month really isn't much to work with, and growing my own food will reduce my cost of living. And selling the surplus is really just to offset the cost of growing the food.
 
Travis Johnson
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Stacy/Ryan...thanks for sharing.

I have a semi-mental illness a well. For me, I have an inoperable brain tumor on my Pituitary Gland pressing hard into my brainstem. That effects my temperament and energy levels, and also gives me seizures. My Doctor wants me to sign up for disability, but I am trying to fight it. I just found out I qualify for a program that will train farmers so they can transition to jobs outside of agriculture. It is too early yet to see what that will be, but I took some tests, and will review them with my career counselor on Tuesday.

We are also looking to see if maybe we can transition my farm into farming something other than sheep, which was just too physically demanding.
 
Ryan Hobbs
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I'm sorry to hear that Travis. But you know, I was thinking that when my grandma passes in 20 years or so, I would turn my whole farm into Food Forest. Animals are a lot of trouble, but planting perennials now might result in easy money later. Mark Shepherd sells his hybrid hazelnuts and chestnuts at forestag.com That could bring in considerable money if you have a lot of them. I have down days when I'm completely useless. My Grandma does the farm stuff when I can't. When I'm without her help, I will be able to go out and just harvest stuff. You can't kill a food forest from Sheer Total Utter Neglect.
 
Ryan Hobbs
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Pursuant to the chronic illness thread, I have revised my farm plan to exclude livestock except for grandma's chickens and a future gaggle of feral food forest fowl. The farm will be dominated by an acre and a quarter of food forest. I have added grapes on trellises in 2 places. Other than the changes I state here, it has not changed much. I did not mark out the outdoor kitchen or workshop, but those will be the same as before.

On the map below, you will note my tree planting is very specific the first year, but afterwards is seeds collected from the 1st gen and 2nd gen. I will be filling my food forest with hybrids.
Farm-Plan-version-4.JPG
[Thumbnail for Farm-Plan-version-4.JPG]
 
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