Living on an Acre, 2nd: A Practical Guide to the Self-Reliant Life

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In others,such as where I live, it's 1per acres. It's different everywhere, but that doesn't matter. In a well mngd homesteading situation, the whole scenario changes. I've also owned, cared for, and milked my own cows. All of the dairies, I've ever dealt with, had things set to where each cow had a calf once per year. This is to promote milk production. No, it's not to supplement income. Dairy calves, though as of recently prices for dairy calves has increased, bring little monetary value in. Not more than 30yrs ago they were given away just to get rid of them.

Then someone thinks the amount of manure produced, in this scenario, if added to the garden would be toxic. Obviously whoever made that comment has never been oast their front door. The manure would be a wonderful addition to the soil, and far from toxic. Another has this idea that the manure, from cattle, must be composted for 6months or more before it's applied to the land. To such an ignorant comment,I ask, just where do you suppose it's composted in fields and pastures?

Right where it lands! Yes you can put fresh, wet manure directly into your garden soil. Just take care not to add too much in one area. There are similar comments as well.

Living on an Acre: A Practical Guide to the Self-Reliant Life

Again, it's okay to not have anymore intelligence than a newborn. I don't understand the crop rotation with the 4 years of grass. Do I need to have 4 years of grass on my 0,5 acre, afterwards 4 plots with potatoes, legumes, brassicas and root vegetables and afterwards again 4 years of grass. If I do that, where do I get food from in those 4 years of grass? Or are there 8 plots and do I have to use the first 4 for food and the last 4 for grass and switch after 4 years and rotation the crops?

Sorry if my question seems dumb, but I'm not a native English speaker. I have to add my voices to those protesting the raising of a cow on a single acre of land, with more than half of it if the illustration is to be believed taken up by house, garden and outbuildings. I tell anyone looking to raise a small number of farm animals to consider ten or twenty acres, and for something as big as a cow, to allow at least two acres per head for grazing to prevent the area from becoming a mudhole.

You could keep the chickens on this small a property, though, so I'd consider sticking with those if your property is only 1 acre. One thing to keep in mind - check your zoning before acquiring any animals. Where I live I consider rural but the powers that be here mandate 10 acres minimum to have a pig and 4 acres to have any cows. And I am allowed 2. How'd anyone come up with that?

I want to butcher a cow for beef. My Dad used to raise Black Angus. What do you think? What is the best beef cow in today's world? We live in Tennessee. I see that some people like to criticize and others are just brainwashed You don't need a pasteurizing machine, and you can not raise a cow on such a small plot either I was raised on a farm that was completely self sufficient and it was bigger than most can afford. But it also was a cotton, bean, corn, wheat farm. We had herds of cows and horses We raised chickens each year. We killed 1 cow per year. We had a milk cow. We ate chicken MANY different ways We raised 1 pig in 32 years 4H club.

We had a neighbor who raised pigs and we shared or bounties You can not do what is in this 1 acre idea I forget the number, but it's something like 2. IF you supplement the cow, then yes,cbut it would not be self sufficient then You would have to have a male and a female in each instance on the animals to re-supply the population after you eat a cow, pig, or chicken I could ramble on about how this would not work, but then I would be telling you all something that I don't know.

I DO know that there are a lot of holes in this formula If you have good neighbors, who will barter with you, you might be able to make this work Mother Earth News http: I don't see how anyone could call this system "self-sufficient" when the author constantly mentions having to buy feed for the animals. If you are buying feed, you are dependent on someone else, and therefore not truly self-sufficient. My wife, 3 kids, and I moved to a 5 acre farm in Ontario.

I look to this article often as inspiration and a place to gather ideas when I need to. I am writing a blog to help others who are trying to do anything related. From gardening or chickens to hay and sheep. We will explore the topics of organization, budgeting, crafting, saving money, recipes, gardening and canning There is so much to learn on one acre. You know every year they try to push a bill through congress to outlaw gardens?

Start a 1-Acre, Self-Sufficient Homestead | MOTHER EARTH NEWS

They want a dependant nation, People who dont know how to grow a bean I do think this guy is dreaming, he should buy the book about homesteading on a minifarm, to the people who think you have to keep a cow pregant to get milk from it, your idiots, at least research something before you post. As long as a mammal is milked it will always produce, even humans Till old age anyways. I couldn't figure out how to add to my post!

Check out DIY fodder sprouting systems. Consider keeping smaller breeds as they will consume less food in the winter, but still provide your family with meat, milk, etc. If you have time and acreage, you can harvest grasses, etc to store for winter feed. I know someone who sewed huge bags of lightweight material to store her grasses and hand cut hay. I hand harvested buckets of leaves, weeds and orchard grass for my small goat herd to cut down on feed costs. I dried it all in a rotating system made with pallets. My take is that you would need a minimum of five acres and 10 would be better.

The bulk of that would be in grazing area for your animals. Butchering in the fall will result in lower feed bills through the winter months. The rabbits are a good idea as they take less space and plenty of offspring. Clippings from the fields would supply a lot of food plus bedding for them, manure is easily managed.

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Check out paddock systems and permaculture for more information. For gardening, I'd suggest compact gardening and edible landscaping around the house. Ok, getting very frustrated with this posting system, this is my 3rd. We would eventually like to keep, 2 milk cows, 2 lowline Angus, 1 sow keeping 2 piglets every year , 2 twinning sheep preferrably, 2 for meat, 2 to sell, the original's to keep for wool , 2 - 6 turkey's for the holidays and winter, 50 chickens rotating 25 out and 25 in, every 6 months for food and for eggs , the kids want a couple of rabbits, which I am not opposed to using the fur, hair for spinning or the meat, a decent garden with fruits and veggies, fruit trees around the edge and berry producing plants in between.

Some of the extra produce would go to the animals, as well as the extra milk. We are a family of 9 at the moment and I would like to produce enough for our family, so that we control what is being put into our bodies. I have heard that this is possible on smaller amounts of land, when you rotate your stock properly. A woman came and talked to us about this, stating that her bees keep her foraging food healthy and plentiful, whilst rotating the stock allowed her to keep pathogens ie: Can anyone advise me on 2 things, how much acreage do I need? I would certainly appreciate anything you might add to my thought process, so that I know what needs to be done or what I should expect.

Keep in mind we are doing this all gradually Except the bees, chickens small numbers to start and gardens. They will be on hand ASAP I would really really LOVE to see an idea or plan like this for the average city lot. Those of us in the city, have our yards for land, and I would love ideas to maximize the space I have. In most towns, city folks are allowed to have chickens and usually about the same about of rabbits. Larger livestock is not allowed. But as most of us who subscribe here, we are looking for ideas to use our ground to grow as much as possible. I love the urban homestead website where in Pasadena, CA they grow enough on their city lot to sell extra produce to support their other foodstuff purchases.

Have you actually done this? I find it highly unlikely. Your words seem to indicate that this is what you "would do" if you were so inclined. It looks OK on paper, but from someone who has homesteaded on 10 acres for 35 years, I doubt many of your recommendations. You plan on keeping a cow and 2 or more goats on a half acre of ground. We kept goats on about 2 and a half acres of pasture and had to supplement with hay.

Your contention that you would not need any hay or straw for goats is ludicrous unless you live in a winterless area. And even so, what are you going to use for bedding? Your strips of pasture would be eaten down in about 3 days from 1 cow and 2 or more goats. A few pigs are OK as long as you mean 3 or less. And no one with only 1 acre should have a sow. They eat nearly anything. But don't expect eggs without grain unless you can grow high quality protein for them.

The biggest issue that I see, however, is your manure management from all of these animals. Your garden would be toxic if you put all of the "dung" on it. On a 1 acre homestead, I would concentrate on gardening and have some chickens, some meat rabbits and maybe a goat, but only if I had children that would drink that much milk.

Since mine are grown, I would rather have bees and not have to worry about the goat eating my garden!! When I was 14, I stayed one summer on a chicken farm. But every couple of days, I was sent across the village to the woman who kept the cows. She would mik the cow and pour it into the jug I had brought with me. And then I'd return back to the chicken farm where someone would pour the jub into a dutch oven, put it on the stove, and then heat but not allow it to boil.

I never could get it right without the thermometer, but everyone else knew it by sight. You want about 70 Celsius. This is the "pasteurization" process. What about rabbits there fat free meat and rabbit pooh is good for the garden. This is a great idea, but even though we have 2 acres in the country, some "city dude" made it law that you have to have at least 5 acres to have any type of "farm" animal. I agree, cow milk is for baby cows not humans anyways. Additionally, most animals prefer to be in the company of their own species, and cows are herd animals.

It is cruel to keep just one. There's nothing quaint about keeping a cow on a relentless cycle of pregnancy and calving and lactating. To keep her indoors and on that small space, the barn would have to be mighty small for long winter months is also not kind. Think about what will happen to your cow when she gets old, and think about what will happen to the sweet little calf born right in your back yard.

You may be reminded that his mother's milk was meant for him. A person with a small farm would buy their own pasteurizing machine if they wanted to I wouldn't want animals on my land. Keeping a cow constantly pregnant and bordering on mastitis just for the sake of having milk isn't worth it at all. I am a little concerned that this article advocates for unpasteurized milk to be feed to your family including children.

There is a reason why milk is pasteurized: Q fever, TB, and brucellosis. It is one thing to choose to drink it yourself but why put your children who have more vulnerable immune systems at risk? I came to the comments section to say that buying a ton of cow feed a year is by no means 'self sufficient'. If you're trying to sell what you grow, this book will quickly pay for itself. Sell What You Sow! A "must have" for farmers' market sellers, managers, market planners, and farmers' market community. Useful how-to's and practical information, detailed and well-written -- stuff you need to know.

Features from back issues online, back issues available unless sold out , contents listed. Good bookstore, lots of useful guides and resources for the homesteader. Each subject is introduced by an expert who sets the available tools against the background of good farming practise.

Helps you evaluate what's most suitable for your situation. Analyses why some projects are successful and suggests ways to improve them. Land preparation, sowing and fertilizing, pest control, harvesting, water lifting, livestock care, beekeeping. With lists of manufacturers mostly in the Third World. Tools for Agriculture The Mantis lightweight tiller is not just a junior-sized toy cultivator, it's an effective tool that can do things a full-sized cultivator can't do, apart from working in much smaller spaces. The Mantis weighs 20 pounds 9 kg. It was designed 30 years ago for professional landscape gardeners and it's the world's best-selling tiller, with more than a million sales.

The twisted "serpentine" tines spin at RPM -- twice the speed of ordinary tillers, digging down to 10" 25cm , cutting through hard sod, compact soil or tough weeds, turning it all into finely textured soil ready for planting. The 9-inch 23cm tilling width makes tilling or cultivating between rows easy.

The Mantis breaks sod and chops it up, incorporates organic matter, mixes in compost or lime, works soil in tight spaces, including raised beds, weeds between rows and among plants. Switch the tines around and dig just a couple of inches into the soil to weed a large 30 x 40 ft garden 9 x 12 metres in 20 minutes, chopping in the weeds as you go. Available in three models: The attachments fit all three models: City farms Organic gardening Building a square foot garden Plant spacing guides No ground? Please support Journey to Forever: Introduction Sustainable farming Small farms fit References.

Back to the land. Food storage and preservation. Introduction Pasture resources Silage. Pigs for small farms.


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Poultry for small farms. Aquaculture for small farms. Composting for small farms. Foundation On-farm composting resources. Controlling weeds and pests.

Weeds Weed control resources Insect pests No pesticides Insect control resources. What people are saying about us. Why we're doing this. Good-bye nasty utility bills! Capture free power from earth, sun, and wind. Catch a breeze, capture free power! Be rewarded with powerful, free electricity from this tiny dynamo. Mount it on your windowsill, and watch it work. What to consider when remodeling an older house How to build a barn Growing produce for self-sufficiency versus growing for profit Beekeeping Raising livestock.

Lyons Press; Second edition June 1, Language: Related Video Shorts 0 Upload your video. Share your thoughts with other customers. Write a customer review. There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later. Arrived promptly and in perfect condition. However, I must say I was misled by the title. I was hoping for a book on actually living on an acre. Instead it is a strange combination of lists converted into prose combined with a government manual. I got the overwhelming feeling, as is disclaimed into the introduction, that its goal is to prevent people from going 'country'.

Raising a Dairy Cow

An example is that the entire topic of composting and recycling takes up half of one page. In my own little opinion, the book "Encyclopedia of Country Living" is way more informative and useful. Kindle Edition Verified Purchase. There is not enough depth in any one area for it to stand alone as a how-to manual, but I have not found another book that does as good a job covering the big picture. Use this book to make sure you are thinking things through, and once if you've decided to move forward with a small farm, find in-depth guides -- or consult your cooperative extension!

I may not reach for it for my own use, but it's be in the stack I loan out to anyone thinking of going the small farm route. One person found this helpful. While I have no real complaint with the content of this book, I ended up returning it as I realized it just wasn't what I was after. The title and back cover lead me to the false assumption that the book would lay out a guide to how a family could utilize one acre of land to produce enough or nearly enough food to live on.

I was hoping, among other things, for a garden plan indicating how many pea plants or tomatoes, or whatever you would want to consider planting to feed a family through the growing season and to can for the winter. I would have also appreciated an indication of what sort and how many animals might be able to successfully graze on an acre in addition to a large vegetable garden and area for fruit trees - how to balance these factors, in other words. Instead, this book offers valuable information on what to consider if you are planning a major relocation from the city to the country perhaps even with the thought of making farming a first or second career.

There are several anecdotal sections written by people who have run small farms and a lengthy section outlining the basic needs of a variety of types of animals you may want to raise.