To those who have experience running a farm like this, I’m curious – what are some common problems? which tasks take the most time out of your day? – when starting out building a farm up versus say 5 years or 10 years down the line when the farm has become more established.
Planning. Just grabbing trees and a shovel and start planting without having done proper “homework” of planning would be akin to gambling. You might win, but the odds aren’t in your favor.
But, i’d say instinct would go a long way if someone had prior experience at some point in life.
(The plan might just be mental in that case and still work out as intended.)
I think one of the more common problems is building a market for your product. It takes some time to build a customer base in a lot of cases. If your farm is the only one around with a product people like, and in a good location, that helps a lot. Social media also helps.
For our orchard, the most time consuming tasks are pruning, thinning and harvesting. Of the three, harvesting is the most difficult.
I’ve used my wifes land kind of like an experiment. by planting so many different things, I’ve learned what grows/ produces best and is easiest to maintain here. also my father had a large garden, greenhouse and many types of fruit trees and bushes so i have his experience and what I’ve learned here to plan accordingly. from what I’ve read on here from others experiences, it seems I’m making the right choice to go with cane fruits for ease of growth and quick return on profit. then later i can expand into other more long term producing fruits and nuts.
Two best pieces of advise I got before I started growing:
-Have it sold before you plant it.
-Have a use for it if the market is disrupted, rain, cold/hot, competing events.
That was just my lame attempt at humor! No, cats generally don’t care for fruit, as least none of ours have. But thankfully they do like rodents! Sue
My husband and I chose to do the Sole Proprietorship also and set up a separate bank account under a DBA (doing business as). We did get a tax number in case we ever need it but we just file the Schedule C with our personal return. It’s pretty easy that way.
@Sue-MiUPz3 I have to count my cats and dogs too for animal pest control duty! They work pretty cheap though!
I am not a cat person. But, fun story, if you go to Isla Mujeres there’s a fun restaurant named Lola Valentina. In it there is a cat named Oreo. Oreo eats mango, papaya, black beans and I forget what else. If I’d had any apples I bet you 200 pesos she’d have eaten them. She’s definitely an herbivore (she ate chicken and pork too), and she’s definitely a cat.
If you are not already familiar with it, there is a “Blackberry school” online which may have helpful information. I wish you success with your farm.
The squirrels help me out with that task, harvesting is always the least time consuming for me!
You might find this talk interesting:
Increase number of chickens and sell the eggs as well. This will ensure you sell enough to meet the “farm sales” requirements (at least there is one in Canada to qualify for farm status on Canadian property taxes).
i plan to add another 6 hens next spring after i butcher the 4 roosters and 2 male mallards i have. that will put me at 27 hens. the ones i got last spring are just starting to lay the last few weeks in any amount.
Why the mallards? Do you keep females?
I’m keeping 1 . 3 is too many for 3 females. tried to rehome them as they are beautiful birds but no takers.
Keep talking guys! I have 50 acres here and am working on making it an income supplement when I retire in 3 years. About 15-20 of it is good usable land for animals and crops. I’ve got about 50-60 fruit trees planted now. 2 each Hazel and almond. 3 pecan for nut trees. I have plenty more room for trees just seeing how the ones I have do and trying to decide what else I’m going to plant. I’ve got blackberries and blueberries I think I will expand this year. I have a pretty good size garden and a dozen elderberry that are doing quite well. If you want some cuttings Moose I would gladly send you some. I’ve disced a couple of acres I am going to plant tis year with an even split in quinoa, amaranth, sorghum and sunflowers to see how well they will grow in a fair amount of quality. No animalsbuet since I’m not there full time yet but it’s only a 2 hour drive so I can get there anytime. I getting into indoor mushroom growing this coming weekend. I’m loving all the suggestions. My first animal will be a mule for riding and I hear they will protect goats, and other animals from bear and coyotes. Definitely will do chickens and I hear raising quail is really good eating.
thanks for the offer but i have 4 varieties of elderberry. awesome to eat fresh eggs from your own chickens! i was considering getting quail. i also have ducks and geese. they lay huge eggs and are much richer than a chickens. they have hybrid breed of duck that actually outlays the best chickens. they don’t need water other than to drink. i do fill their kiddie pool once and awhile so they can swim. guinea fowl would do well on your property as they can mostly fend for themselves and love bugs!. they have a dark meat like a pheasant. if you feed them occasionally they will stay around. i wish i had your amount of land. id go bankrupt trying to cover all of it with fruit and nut trees!
Oh my , a mule for riding, now you are sure in for some fun with that. Here are a couple of old pictures of some riding mules I used to own.
try putting in some crandall and clove currant bushes. they are a midwest currant and drought tolerant. makes the best jams hands down of any berry I’ve ever tried! if you want some cuttings to root let me know.i have both . they root very easily. also autumn olive is a very good berry and grows anywhere. also makes great cover for your quail and guineas! i can get you cuttings of them as well.