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Farming Smarter, Not Harder, Part 1: Pasture and Hay

| 3/3/2020 10:46:00 AM

Commercial does at SteelMeadow Farm, Missouri

Commercial does at SteelMeadow Farm, Missouri

Having a farm on one’s own; it is a dream, a vision.  One day the stars align and with blood, sweat and tears you transform your Dream into Reality.  Hopefully the fences were in place before the livestock arrived.  Coop built before the chicks came in the mail. Garden site prepped the autumn before spring planting.  In a perfect world, maybe- in reality, not so much.

We brought home goat kids first and had to use make-shift fencing, peeps in the mail grew quickly and then we built a coop, and the garden?  Make beds as you need them, why plan?

In the years since, we have made a major move from Virginia to Missouri. Hauling goats in the backs of our two pickups, chickens stuffed into a trailered station wagon, the other truck pulling a trailer with our little tractor, chest freezer, large tools and perched on top — the mailbox. Looked like the Beverly Hillbillies. It was all hard work and we brought it upon ourselves.

Farming Mistakes, Old and New

We have made all the rookie mistakes and then some. Neither of us were raised on a farm so all of this was, and still is, new.  Cattle have learning curve, but goats a steeper one.  Beekeeping was much harder than anticipated. The rocky, clay-filled, topsoil poor garden site in Missouri had none of the soft, rich dirt of our Virginia lowland location. And the rocks, all the rocks.

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