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Starting a market garden/gardening business

 
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Hi I was wondering what y'all think about starting a market garden or a backyard gardening business or even rural gardening/farming business? My dad just passed away and we are thinking about selling the house and 12 acres. Before he left I was planning on building my own little house and starting a farm there but now we are thinking about aelling it all. Im messed up about it but I think it would be better to start fresh even though I will only end up with 5000 bucks for 12 acres and a house (rural arkansas). I don't know what to do but my heart is set on permaculture gardening creating livelihood whereever instead of just being another cog in the machine?
 
pollinator
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Location: South of Capricorn
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Sorry to hear about your dad.

As for your business, the first thing you need is a market. Who are your target clients, and similarly, what kind of products can you sell that local people would love to pay you for?
 
gardener
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Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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Where in Arkansas are you currently located?  That can be key here in the natural state for making a successful market garden business.

I would like to suggest you re-think the selling the family homestead, you aren't going to have much to start with if you do sell 12 acres and a house.
Starting from scratch is not great (ask me how I know) it takes time to get all the infrastructure built and something is always going to set you back on your time line.
If you already have at least part of the infrastructure in place, you are steps ahead of the game.

Most of the state does have farmer's markets going (Little Rock, Fayetteville, Jonesborough, are the biggest right now) those give you easy access to customers when they are open and the stalls aren't so expensive to rent.
Russellville is also a good farmer's market area, Beebe has a huge flea market that includes a farmer's market area and even animals.
Don't forget to approach the Executive Chefs at Hotels and Restaurants, if you ask then what produce they have trouble getting locally, you might find yourself a nice niche market that way.

( If you are thinking of selling because of some other reason than simply financial, pm me if you like )

Redhawk
 
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Location: Cumberland Plateau, Tennessee
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Hey Franak, I am on my 2nd year starting a market garden in rural Tennessee. I reckon It's pretty similar here. I do agree that you should probably keep the 12 acres and house and work with what you have. I also would say;

#1 You are already on the right track; asking questions, ready to start but not jumping the gun.

#2 Get in contact with local farmers and gardener and listen to their advice. Consider cooperating with them.

#3 Ask locals what they would want to buy ad pay attention to their needs and style.

#4 Don't worry about building an LLC or trust or anything until you have something going on and are pretty sure what you are going to do. Start as a neighbor helping your neighbors by providing high quality food/products at decent prices with a smile and a story, whether you're at a farmers market, local stand, CSA or whatever.

#5 Don't spend too much money. You will lose money at first as you find your niche and discover what works for you, and the more you spend the more you can lose.

#6 Just get out there! See if it works! Have fun!



 
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Franak Ostapowicz wrote:Hi I was wondering what y'all think about starting a market garden or a backyard gardening business or even rural gardening/farming business? My dad just passed away and we are thinking about selling the house and 12 acres. Before he left I was planning on building my own little house and starting a farm there but now we are thinking about aelling it all. Im messed up about it but I think it would be better to start fresh even though I will only end up with 5000 bucks for 12 acres and a house (rural arkansas). I don't know what to do but my heart is set on permaculture gardening creating livelihood whereever instead of just being another cog in the machine?


Selling it for 5k sounds like an excellent plan! I'd love to scoop up twleve acres in the Ozarks with a farmhouse on it. Please PM me so we can arrange a meet up. Thanks.
 
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Hi Frank, I'm interested in relocating to Arkansas to do permaculture. What did you decide to do with your 12 acres?
 
gardener
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That sounds like an awesome price! I thought land was cheap here! How are things going for you?
 
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