After a decade building and running Bella Farm in Paonia, Co., life's events has me and the family moving to Ojai. I am very excited by the possibilities living and farming in a warm winter climate!
I am looking for a farm, new or established, that could benefit from my skills and knowledge. I have professional income, and so do not need to earn money from the farm. I would like to receive housing and farm food in exchange for my labor. I come as a family, with my partner and 3 kids. The kids are 7,9, and 10, were born and homeschooled on my farm, and can out work most adults. They are awesome.
My skills include everything I learned building an off-grid homestead, market garden, and micro raw dairy. With my wife, we converted an abandoned apple orchard into a diversified commercial farm. We raised a market garden and greenhouses, dairy cows, meat from pigs, chickens, ducks, turkeys, and rabbits, a fruit orchard of apricot and peach, perennialmedicinal herb gardens, and natural cultivation of shiitake mushrooms. I designed and built a complete farm water system, including pond, gravity pressurized sprinklers, storage cisterns, and treated drinking water. I designed and installed an off-grid solar system that powered my cabin and all farm operations. I built a cabin, two barns, two greenhouses, and an apartment on the farm. I love everything about homesteading and small farms.
I believe that me and my family would be a huge asset to the right land owner or small farmer. I will be visiting Ojai in mid-October, and would love to meet anybody interested in permaculture in the area.
I am doing some research on raising meat birds for commercial purposes. After reading your thread on Jersey Giants, I thought, "this is great information, but I wonder how much of it would apply to me?" "Me" is someone who is dreaming and scheming of buying land in the coastal range west of the Paso Robles area, and so therefore I would have different seasons/less winter than you had in Colorado with your birds. Doing a bit of light internet stalking I found that you've since moved to Ojai! How fortuitous! Perhaps, when the time comes (we're probably two years out from a property purchase, but hopefully a bit less), you will be well and truly versed in the differences in farming between Colorado and Central-Coastal Cali, and will be willing to pass along your wisdom? I see you have an herbal salve company there...any other farm operations underway? Just curious to know what you're up to these days. Farm tours available?