HOW TO MAKE A SMALL FARM INTO A MONEY MAKER!
to tell he's loaded? The BIG BARN!
BY A SAVVY FARMER "Farmers always need cash for
it mortgage, taxes, food, clothing, replacement parts, raw
feed, tools, or whatever. To me, who controls your income (and
what hoops you
have to jump through to get it) shows how independent you
truly are. The Amish
have a saying "The barn will build the house, but the house
build the barn"...meaning look to your livelihood first; it is
of everything else. We will always need to pay property taxes
for the privilege
of having our farms located in this country, and they won't
take eggs and milk
down at the town hall. my big worry.
We didn't jump into this feet
first, hoping to be instantly self-sufficient. Every year we
add a few more
animals, plant more fruit and nut trees, and widen our crop
area and selection.
Every year we find more things to do with our land. This year
we rented the
back field (fixed up with fire circle, woodstove, latrine, and
to various groups who wanted to do camping retreats, and it
paid for 2 goats
and half the mortar for our new outbuilding, the sauna/hot
which we're still plugging away at. (We broke even on the herb
sales this year,
our first in business.) Still, this isn't enough cash for
taxes and mortgage.
Until it's paid, we work outside. For that matter, My wife
to stop working outside. She's getting her master's degree so
she can get
licensed as a LICSW and hang out a shingle. She enjoys her
career, she enjoys
the farm too. I don't intend to stop writing, either, although
that can be done
from the farm.
Every year, we get a little better at this. This year, most of the grain failed - we had a solid month of summer rain and our rye crop came down with ergot. Yup, ergot, the stuff that caused the Salem witch trials. and in Europe, St. Vitus's dance. ERGOT makes LSD by the way. No, we didn't eat it. Or refine it to sell at the local college. We’re not that eager for profits. But the rain helped some vegies. The tomatoes did marvelously. I figure in 5 more years we'll have got it all down, and be finished building our infrastructure. Small moves, small moves."
As a researcher into FRUGAL
LIVING, creating COTTAGE
where you find articles on COMMUNAL Biz ventures, GUERILLA
CAPITALISM, and NEW
, I would suggest the obvious farm product, FRUIT JAMS. My
here in L.A. works the open air Farmers’ Markets selling small
jars of jam for
8$ each. She does Palisades, Malibu, The Valley, Beverly Hills
days. Met so many rich pie lovers that she started making home
deliveries and quit the MARKET, (too much putting up booths
for a 70 yr old,) She home delivers the same foods, entrees,
desserts, jams. She expanded to Ebay antique finds in the
‘related’ area of vintage
tablecloths, napkins. At close up time Sunday, on weekends,
she goes to the
many fruit vendors and gets crates of berries, peaches, pears,
plums for nearly nothing. You can bet
she’s making jam on Monday!She does the rest of the cooking on
THURS/FRI. People get delivery on week-end.
growing giant garlic can sell every
clove they produce. Elephant garlic, for example, retails for
$6 a pound and
produces up to 15,000 pounds per acre." Garlic is an ideal
crop for the
small grower, as it's labor intensive and almost foolproof.
And CHINESE GARLIC is suspect, sulphuric, toxic and has a bad
taste. So we need AMERICAN GARLIC more than ever. Because it
tolerates a wide
variety of soils and weather, it's very hard to lose a crop.
growers have nicknamed garlic "the mortgage lifter" for that
reason. Another one would be
BAMBOO BEAUTY! Two
years ago, when
owners Jeff Goldberg and Tanner Haigwood had a good idea and
very little money.
Now the two are celebrating the success and expansion of their
company. Their old warehouse is empty because they’re moving
into a new facility
twice the size. They need the space to keep up with demand for
the bamboo they sell. 250,000 pounds
of bamboo every month. Goldberg and Haigwood estimate their
company’s worth at
more than $10 million. So just how did two unemployed surfers
end up with a
multi-million-dollar company in two years? The entrepreneurs
also know, if a
retail giant like Home Depot enters the bamboo market, it
could put them out of
business. Take a google around your city and see HOW
MANY BAMBOO GROWERS THERE
is a real business
opportunity! Bob Gow has grown the superb Dendrocalamus
strictus bamboos on his 1000 acre
hacienda deep on the Yucatan
peninsula. He and his mayan workers have created fences and
furniture. They are
looking for bamboo businesses Stateside which will market
their poles and
products and use their skills and facilities to develop
their own designs and
ideas. Yuca bamboo's ability to produce poles is unlimited.
Land is plentiful.
Start your bamboo business
Note that a 12 foot fence Bamboo fencing is about 200$. His labor consists of 4$ a day Indians down in Mexico. But how hard can it be to wire together a lot of pieces. If you can underprice the people currently in this line of manufacturing, supply the landscapers in the city near you, there's money to be made. OR DO FURNITURE out of BAMBOO. Get your own website. A total tyro can do that, I did, and I write about it. WEBSITE DESIGN Put your business on the map with your site. Go to Craigs list to place ads daily, to advertise your offerings. "We INSTALL real, oriental bamboo fencing, guaranteed to last 10 years in perfect shape. etc"
LAST GAMBIT, GROW VEGETABLES. You and a few friends get a ONE ACRE FARM GARDEN one gas tank away from the city. An acre is highly productive for its size.. Make the pathways narrow rather than increasing the size of the BEDS just create more planting beds per acre. (You can only lean in so far to till the soil when on your knees.) BUILD A CABIN there for your group. Then WORKER VILLAS.
Berries bring big money. PURSLANE, a new vegetable to the USA but cherished in Mexico and the Arab countries-- is easy to grow. Salad is a good farmer’s market item, an every Sunday money crop. You and your group might need a live-in rural helper to water 7 times a week, more if it's super hot there. Inexpensive labor from a teenage boy? The watering is the key upkeep. The rest you can do on Saturdays. It’s easy to harvest so your own kids can do it. They pick every weekend. You'll need a van and a lot of ice. Most Farmers markets in the city are weekends,in which case you pick FRIDAY. Some markets are on a weekday,gives you more picking opportunities. Morning or afternoon depends on how far from clients your farm is.
TILTH NOT TILLING- If you want lazy gardening, with no leaning whatsoever, read the online writings of RUTH STOUT. Her books are available used, online, at ABEBOOKS. Good old Ruthie a senior, never tilled. She mulched, just added fertility on top, knowing what worms know, that tilth sinks downward and if it doesn't, the worm moves upward and eats the mulch, and poops downward, giving superb, black worm castings at all levels beneath your tossed-on leaf salad. Nature has many miracles & little tricks and not all are visible above ground. Except as vibrant, healthy plants!
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Our POSTER is ANITA SANDS HERNANDEZ, Los Angeles Writer, Mother of 4, and career Astrologer. Catch up with her websites TRUTHS GOV WILL HIDE & NEVER TELL YOU, also The FUTURE, WHAT'S COMIN' AT YA! & HOW TO SURVIVE the COMING GREAT DEPRESSION, and Secrets of Nature, HOLISTIC, AFFORDABLE HEALING. Also HOW TO LIVE on A NICKLE, The FRUGAL PAGE.* Anita is at firstname.lastname@example.org ). Get a free natal horoscope "my money/future life" reading now + copy horoscope as a Gif file graphic!
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