Understanding and effectively executing a breeding program depends on understanding the calving cycle and when and how to dry a cow off in preparation of calving.
Silvopasture is a newfangled word for wooded pasture. Basically, all it means is that you are using wooded land with trees and forage for pasture. The trees can be managed for firewood production and/or saw logs and provide welcome shade and shelter for your livestock and forage.
Choosing the business model for Bob-White Systems micro dairy.
Bucket milkers offer small and micro-dairy farmers affordable and reliable system for milking cows. Here are my basics for how to use a bucket milker on a micro dairy.
How installing a pipeline milking system can help dairy farmers of all sizes make the most of their valuable time.
All land is not created equal when it comes to raising animals on a micro dairy.
How to finance your micro dairy and manage your budget for success.
A guide to creating realistic goals for your micro dairy based on your own experience.
Guidance for aspiring micro dairy owners and managers when navigating regulations and permitting on the local and state levels.
How a small and inexpensive High Temperature-Short Time pasteurizer could change the dairy industry.
Cows, goats, sheep, water buffalo, camels and, even, horses have been successfully milked by hand for thousands of years. Though it's an age-old practice, milking a cow by hand is not as easy as it may first appear. It’s best to know what you are getting into before you take on this important farming task.
The flavor and shelf life of the milk you sell directly to consumers are directly impacted by how the milk is produced and handled on your farm. Here are my best practices for handling and producing the highest-quality, most delicious milk on the farm.
Cows love routine. The more things stay the same for cows, the safer and more secure they feel. Here is my abbreviated list of best practices for milking a cow, learned over many decades in the barn.
Cows are big, powerful animals, and milking puts you right beside the strong hind legs and feet. If you find yourself with what I call a kicky cow, there are steps you can take to manage the animal.
After almost 50 years of raising cows and dairy farming in New England, I’ve developed what I consider to be 15 universal truths for micro dairy owners.
It's important to prepare your Micro Dairy or small farm for winter by making small improvements to your facilities. But it's also important to mentally prepare for the dark, cold months.
Selecting the location for the Bob-White Systems’ micro dairy barn.
Why we chose to build the Bob-White Systems barn we did.
Choosing cows for the Bob-White Systems micro dairy.
Cow manure is a key indicator of bovine health and well being. After milk, it is the most valuable thing your cows will produce. Micro-dairy expert Steve Judge explains why it pays to get comfortable with cow manure.
Managing the feed regimen for cows in a micro dairy environment is a matter of setting clear goals and understanding what your cows need.
What you need to think about to prepare your cows, barn, feed and yourself for the cold weather.
Feed and hay management tips to get through winter.
Finding time to make improvements on a small dairy is difficult but making a few improvements as the seasons change can often make a micro dairy or any size small farm more efficient. Here are 7 steps to help you prepare your barn for the cold winter months.
Helping your cows transition from fall to winter can be easy to do. Here are five steps to consider when the cold weather starts settling in.
How and why I started using leftover raw milk as a natural soil supplement and fertilizer on my dairy farm.
Why I have never trimmed my cow' nails in 8 years of running a micro dairy. Read on to choose whether you want to be trimming your cows' hooves.
Bob-White Systems is bringing the cows back home by providing supplies, equipment and support for Micro Dairies, Home & Farmstead cheesemakers and small-scale producers of local and farm fresh dairy products.
Storing winter squash and preserving other vegetables through the winter presents their own set of challenges to the home gardener and homesteader. We find that growing food is just one half of the equation, and it is easy to be caught unprepared or find that the space and temperature requirements for storage can be hard to come by.
Steve Judge of Bob-White Systems in Vermont offers his Micro Dairy expertise in this blog series on how to start and manage a Micro Dairy, from farm and barn planning to selecting dairy cows, goats and sheep to daily operations and being profitable.
Find all of the mulch you need for free in your own back yard.
Why the cost of utilities won’t be drastically affected by renewable energy sources.
Discusses the similarities between the essential needs of children and seedlings in terms of what they need to grow and thrive.
Jump start your tomato harvest two months before everyone else with these simple instructions!
For more than 40 years, The Farm Community in Tennessee has been on the forefront of farming, gardening and the green lifestyle.
You can grow a year's supply of beans in a surprisingly small amount of space.
Butternut squash are an important winter food, the rich orange flesh delivering vital nutrients in a sweet and velvety goodness that can be utilized in a variety of ways.
The "Earth Shelter" at The Farm Community in Tennessee combines the geothermal properties of the earth with solar design to produce a very energy efficient home.
Simple suggestions on preserving vegetables and herbs
A gourmet guide to preserving the last harvest from your garden.
Helpful tips on keeping earth stewardship alive this holiday season.
The Food Is Free Project has become a food revolution in Austin, Texas
Solar energy solutions can reshape the future. It can help sculpt the world we live in and can help solve some of the greatest environmental problems facing the world today including climate change and our reliance on fossil fuels.
The Food is Free Project has inspired thousands of individuals, families and groups around the globe to start front yard free gardens to share with friends and neighbors. They are losing their teaching farm.
Women have gathered since the dawn of humanity. Women tend to lose sight of self care because we are the caregivers. When women gather, we renew the inner fire in our hearts, we brainstorm solutions to global problems, we connect to the earth.
Use programmable watering timers in your garden to help you maintain a regular schedule, keeping your plants well hydrated with less work.
Fresh pesto is great in the summer, but it's even better in the middle of winter!
Steve Maxwell, “Canada’s Handiest Man”, outlines some suggestions on how to become an expert carpenter who can work with wood anywhere.
Steve Maxwell, “Canada’s Handiest Man”, share his make do tool tips with fellow DIY homeowners.
Steve Maxwell, “Canada’s Handiest Man”, explains just how easy it is to install laminate flooring yourself.
Why do certain individuals care about the environment while others do not? Is it an intrinsic moral obligation? Are we born with an innate instinct to want to protect the earth and its natural resources?
Spotlight on Earth Stewardship pays homage to eco-conscious individuals by sharing their stories of hope, inspiration, challenges and insight into making the earth a better place for generations to come.
Allowing children the space to discover the beauty and wonder of plants through tending to their own garden builds character, teaches responsibility, gives insight into the beauty of nature and fosters their connection with where their food comes from.
Learn a few tips for efficiency from seasoned CSA Farmers: La Vista CSA Farm.
Autumn offers not only a bountiful harvest, but also an abundance of art materials directly from nature.
Tips on creating nature art, winter bird feeders and children's art.
Permaculture is at the heart of the solution of many environmental crises. Permaculture is alive with the possibilities of positive change.
In remembrance of a dear friend and steward of the Earth, a look at how others inspire us and how their legacy sculpts us.
Get prepared for the season with useful tips for seed saving with Art Davidson, expert from Baker Creek Heirloom Seed.
This will be an ongoing series, which pays homage to Eco-conscious individuals by sharing their stories of hope, inspiration, challenges and insight into making the earth a better place for generations to come.
Follow these simple tips on fall gardening.
Young, pioneering aquaponic farmers like Josh and Alicia Davis, who own and operate an aquaponics farm in the Midwest, are reshaping the future of food in the United Sates. Folks like these surely do inspire others to think differently about their food.
Prepare simple hugelkultur beds utilizing organic materials found onsite. Use fallen trees, branches, pine needles, leaves and other organic material to build raised beds now for planting in the fall.
Gardening is as easy as you want it to be!
"Numen: The Nature of Plants" is a cornucopia of intuitive wisdom, science based knowledge, and exuberant passion and reverence for plants around the world. The film opens with plant close ups and stunning time lapse photography of plants throughout their growing cycles, their intrinsic eye catching patterns and their symbiotic relationships with pollinators. Numen is defined as the spirit believed by animists to inhabit natural objects. The film describes that we sense this force the most abundantly through plants.
Do you dream about living in a tiny, super-efficient home but worry about living with less space? This list of reasons for living could help push you off the fence. Dream big, live small!
I love my two-story log cabin, which combines recycled and an array of green building materials.
You can be harvesting from your garden all year long, including through the winter months! It's time to plant the fall garden.
Steve Maxwell, “Canada’s Handiest Man”, raves about his favourite hand held torch tool, the BernzOmatic Quickfire Hand Torch.
Steve explains how he and his 11 year old son grew a crop of wheat entirely by hand, and why this is something you should try, too.
Blogger Steve Maxwell offers tips and a video explaining how to choose and use a router table.
Making wooden replacement handles for tools is easier than you think.
A list of ways we could each show support or teach our friends and family to support the Local Foods Movement
DIY sprouting experiment to get kids interested in growing and eating sprouts.
An interview with Jeremiah Gettle, discussing his thoughts on and solutions to pressing environmental issues facing the world today.
The Missouri Organic Association is gearing up for its 2015 Annual Conference in Springfield, Mo, on February 5th, 6th and 7th at University Plaza Hotel and Conference Center.
Another set of Great Quotations. These seven quotations have direct relevance to gardeners and farmers, but they offer wisdom that everyone can learn from and enjoy.
Steve shows methods he's found for extending the life of new roofs and decreasing their environmental impact
A short lesson and video on stacking firewood in round piles
Watch Steve tell you his homestead story and how his two trucks have helped make good things happen.
Steve explains a little about why he chose to install reclaimed cast-iron radiators, including a video tour of his installation.
Cut the confusion that accompanies buying a cordless drill with this information on which drill features and capabilities to look for.
How a hopelessly damaged apple tree has delivered lessons of hope since 2007.
Download Steve Maxwell’s free list of tested and approved deck stains that have worked well in field tests.
Learn how to eliminate mold growth in your home and improve indoor air quality by using Concrobium.
Cam has been an Apple Mac fan since the beginning.
Steve explains how our pursuit of environmental sustainability can also drive us crazy if it's not put in the correct philosophical context.
Steve shares his time touring a plant that makes the kind of blades homesteaders use every day,
Steve Maxwell, “Canada’s Handiest Man”, sheds light
on a new rural Canadian invention, Seg-Ins Big Bed, a truck extention that
improves cargo capacity.
Steve shares current results and recommendations from his 20 years of observing and applying deck finishing products and techniques.
Steve offers a few thoughts on line trimmers and brush cutters.
Steve Maxwell, Canada’s Handiest Man, provides tips on splitting firewood for home heating via woodstoves or fireplaces.
Steve Maxwell, Canada’s Handiest Man, answers a homeowner’s question about how best to apply a smooth finish to wood furniture.
Steve Maxwell, Canada’s Handiest Man, answers a homeowner’s question about how best to apply a smooth finish to wood furniture.
Steve Maxwell, “Canada’s Handiest Man”, guides an inquiring homeowner on how to find the right circular saw.
Blogger Crystal Stevens discusses her time working at a nature-based summer camp for kids.
Garlic is resilient, easy-to-grow, highly nutritious, and a natural antibiotic.
One of my earliest vivid childhood memories is sitting on my father’s lap as a young girl reading the magazine together in the 1980s and all throughout my childhood. He would read aloud while I studied the pictures of passive solar building, vegetable gardening, sheep shearing, building your own sugar shack and the beautiful array of topics which he read to me frequently. Those images, along with the camping trips in the mountains, the whitewater and canoeing excursions, and our family trip to Alaska, have been etched in the catacombs of my childhood memories and have sculpted the person I have grown to become.
Get the inside scoop on how successful farmer and author Jean-Martin Fortier farms 11/2 acres using soil building and no-till methods.
Learn how to sharpen your chainsaw properly with a file and guide
Steve explains what he's learned over 20 years of using generators and monitoring advances in design.
Learn how to install ceramic tiles that'll never let you down.
A simple, practical and easy option for priming seasonal water systems.
Carbide saw blades last a long time and typically perform very well. Learn about two ways to keep them sharp and effective.
Steve explains the basics of refinishing wooden stairs, including an easily renewable finishing strategy.
There are many more ways than ever to earn income without ever leaving the homestead. As energy prices rise, earning the money you need without traveling is key to success. It just might not come from the place you expect.
Steve got curious and shares the results of a gruelling endurance test he completed to compare cordless tool battery performance
Steve Maxwell spotlights the three myths that prevent people from realizing the full value of the self reliant lifestyle, and how to dispel them
Steve explains why building a scale model is such a good way to design homestead structures, and how to do it.
Join Steve for a no-cost 75 minute video tutorial on building and managing a root cellar
Here’s what to look for when purchasing a portable table saw for DIY building projects around your homestead.
Almost 30 years ago I made one of the best decisions ever when I began my homesteading adventure. It's no "Little House on the Prarie" but you can see it from there.
The Obama Administration releases its plans for new renewable energy sources. Ken Salazar, Secretary of the Interior, explains that the new solar energy zones span six states and keep both domestic energy and environmental preservation in mind. If completed, the power generated from these solar energy zones would provide electricity to roughly seven-million homes.
Steve explains how one practical guy invented a way to burn pellets efficiently without an expensive pellet stove
See a video on how Steve finishes interior wood with waterbased stains, and why you might want to think beyond just brown colours.
Steve shares 11 years of his experience with the newest mainstay power tool in the world, and offers three free chances to win an impact driver.
With a few key supplies, you can revive worn wood flooring without heavy-duty sanding.
Steve shares an approach he installed at a friend's place for easing the burden of priming seasonal water systems