Too much time on my hands…
With all the nasty weather, and drawn out thaw, then back into snow again, I’ve had time to think about more ways to make money on our little farm.
Each of us have projects we’re working on. If they ever all come together, we could generate a little income pretty much year around.
Of course, the largest project (in terms of time and money invested) is the hoop house project. Bev and I are shepherding that project. When the opportunity came up, it was just matter of filling out the government paperwork. Two years ago, we applied for an EQIP grant, so we could cover our little garden with one or two hoop houses. The whole idea is that it would extend our garden season for the current June to August, out to at least April to October,
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Enough with this weather! We have goats due to kid about February 14 with lambing starting in March. We still need to finish the two hoop houses and then have to rebuild the aquaponics system.
Besides that, we’re getting cabin fever.
Sheep are ready for breakfast.
Throughout the bad weather, our animals have made us look bad. The sheep insist on sleeping under the stars, even though they have shelters. When we go out in the morning for chores, there they are, laying in muck. They get up and shake the ice crystals off their warm wooly coats and head for the feed.
More often than not, our heifer has spent the night outside although she has two covered wind breaks. She sleeps really close to her feed area, in case she wants to snack.
Zena, the Alpine goat has really frustrated us.
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Posted in Around the farm, Seasons
Tags: aquaponics, chickens, deep freeze, goats, heifer, hoop houses, miserable weather, nubians, rabbits, weather
We’ve reached that point in the hoop house project where we can now see the end of the beginning.
The end in that the power company has now switched our power to the new service panel, and we’re within a couple minor tasks of being ready to install the double covers. That signals the “end of the project” and we can get paid.
So here’s how the past several days have gone.
I pretty much finished my part of the trench just before my right shoulder said “that’s enough out of you for a while”. I’ve dug to a point that is 4 ft away from the outgoing lines. Now we’ll wait for the power company.
We had a couple of neighbors over last Sunday to assist us with finishing the “overhead” stuff, like securing the bow sections with self-tapping screws, and helping install a couple of the frames on the ends.
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Over the next week or so, I’ll be constructing some surveys designed to help us know what you would like to purchase at the Cedar City Farmer’s Markets (year round, or seasonal).
We will also be asking about other ways to get our produce, meat and eventually cheese into your hands… should we go to other markets… what about online sales… would you come to the farm if we had a farm stand. These are the things we really want to know about.
So, I’ll be using Survey Monkey to help craft the questions and the answers. You may answer anonymously. In a few cases, we’ll need to know locations, but not your identity.
With the construction of our two hoop houses, and enough data to prove that our aquaponics system will produce sell-able product, we have a very exciting future. We’re already selling lamb by the whole or half,
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Posted in Backyard Aquaponics, Cedar City Farmer's Market, Certified Organic Garden, Curds and Whey, Custom Meat Program, Goats, Seasons, Surveys
Tags: aquaponics, Cedar City, cheese, farm, Farmer's Market, hoop houses, lamb, produce, soft cheeses, survey monkey
Back when Bev, Cindy and Mom were still in Ohio, they had a beautiful strawberry bed. Over the years, they actually had three beds as the berries outgrew the first bed. They had made a raised bed over a spot where an old car had been sitting for years. No grass, no problem, just build a bed and plant strawberries.
They enjoyed huge, luscious, perfectly shaped and incredibly sweet berries all summer long for many years. If there was one thing they would miss when they moved to Utah, they didn’t know it would be strawberries. Their berry patches were so prolific, they’d take the weed whip to the leaves just to get enough sunlight in to the inner berries.
When they made the move to Utah, they never even thought about bringing some berry starts, not that it would have made much of a difference.
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