This might be a long shot, but you've got to try, right?
I run a successful small-scale vegetable farm, eco-friendly but no certifications, currently located on rented land in southern Virginia. I am seeking land to relocate my business, preferably in Person County, NC or in adjacent counties of NC or VA. I would consider properties for sale, for lease, alternative land access arrangements, or forming a partnership with one or more individuals who have land already. I would prefer long term access to the same piece of land, one way or another. For more details about my farm and what I'm looking for, read on:
My name is Graham, and my business is called Green Knight Farm and is now in its second year. Prior to starting this business I apprenticed on a number of farms and am experienced with many different crops and livestock. Currently I produce a wide range of annual vegetables for direct marketing to customers and sell at a weekly market in Wake Forest, NC and to a devoted group of local regulars. I run the farm largely by myself, with occasional help from my partner who works full time in Roxboro, NC. The farm is currently located on rented land in the small town of Skipwith, VA.
My hope is to find a new situation for the farm this year and move during the 2016-2017 off season. The ideal property would include farmer housing, at least two acres of open land for vegetable production, a pond or good well for irrigation, one or more outbuildings, and additional land that would allow me to diversify and add more enterprises to my business. Given the right land, I would like to add livestock, perennialfruit, or other ventures, but this would depend on the suitability of the land. My partner has a daily commute to Roxboro, so property nearer to it would be preferred - we'd really like to be in the half-hour range - and I'd like to continue selling in Wake Forest. Of course, a property that only hits some of those points could still be a winner for us.
My production practices are as low impact as I can make them. My only fertilizer is compost and I use no herbicides or pesticides, and I do almost all work by hand. I use a small walk-behind tiller sparingly, and mow or weed whack occasionally, but otherwise use no motorized tools. I do of course take my produce to market in a vehicle. I try to use as little plastic as I can manage, but I haven't gotten rid of it completely. One of my goals is to become yet lower impact as I go on, and to implement more permaculture tricks.
Like most farmers, we are of modest means. I'm not going to put a number on what we could afford since I'd like to hear about any opportunities that might be out there, but we are down there in the low income brackets! I'm not scared of a place that needs lots of work, in fact I have a lot of experience in renovation and construction. If you have a neat old place that you'd like to see someone save, maybe we can work something out. Or if you're running a farm by yourself too, maybe we can join forces. Flying solo can be pretty hard sometimes!
If anyone knows of an opportunity that might suit me, I'd love to hear about it, and if you happen to know someone in my search area feel free to pass this message along. I can be reached at email@example.com. Thanks!
Hello, thanks for your interest! No, we never did find the right situation and presently our farm, as a commercial venture at least, is on hiatus for an indefinite time and we are both working off the farm. I think we'll come around to it again at some point, but for the moment we are no longer seeking land. Thanks though!