Farming Thread

NoMoreTO

Ostrich
I have about 700 Small Square Bales up in the hayloft. Its mostly a "Strawy" Oat Hay, along with some "Hayey" Oat Straw.

I sold 13 for $5 each to a local farmer tonight. He is using them for his beef, but will feed some to his Pigeons too. Apparently, he farms pigeons and sells them to a wholesaler in Toronto who then distributes them out to Chinese in Toronto who view Pigeon as a staple.

$65 obviously isn't a ton of money, but if these pigeons take to the hay, he might be a good customer. I'd like to clear the hayloft out and sell all 700 or at least half of it to a single customer. His farm is about 3 miles from mine so we could haul it all down there before winter comes and the salt is on the ground which isn't good for the tractor.

Using the pickup isn't the most efficient, but I was happy to shake hands and meet another local farmer.

I sold my large bales to a big producer, but in a way would rather have these simple farmer to farmer connections if I can do it.

Small_Squares1.jpg
 

PUA_Rachacha

Woodpecker
This is my favorite thread on RV at the moment. Allows me to see how you guys do it, from up in Calgary to down in Panama. There is something so tranquil about farming (although it is physically toiling), something that connects one closer to Him.

I'll get there one day when I can walk away from this office job, until then I'll live vicariously through you guys. Keep up the great work!
 

SouthernTory

Woodpecker
Really finding the farm helpful during this time plus when you take a break and look out on nature you realise what is important and feel your faith grow.

IMG-20201108-163314.jpg


Looking out over farm orchard.

IMG-20201106-132817.jpg


Not sure what kind of tree this is bit it is in full flower in November!
 

john_Jea

Sparrow
I was raised on a tobacco farm in Canada and worked on the farm from the age of 12 to 25.
I had been thinking about asking if anyone had experience with growing tobacco but I assumed that it would probably be unlikely, and then I read the first post, surreal.

For some reason I have gotten this irrational interest in growing tobacco, I say irrational because
a) I'm not really in the climate for growing it.
b) I have no interest in using tobacco, never used any tobacco product and always rejected when offered.

And yet I really want to try growing it.

I order some virgina gold seeds that I'll try planting come spring, not sure what the differences are between plants other than what what is said in this video.


Now I didn't know tobacco could be grown so far up north commercially, how are the average summer temperatures and how long is the growing/drying season?
 

NoMoreTO

Ostrich
I had been thinking about asking if anyone had experience with growing tobacco but I assumed that it would probably be unlikely, and then I read the first post, surreal.

For some reason I have gotten this irrational interest in growing tobacco, I say irrational because
a) I'm not really in the climate for growing it.
b) I have no interest in using tobacco, never used any tobacco product and always rejected when offered.

And yet I really want to try growing it.

I order some virgina gold seeds that I'll try planting come spring, not sure what the differences are between plants other than what what is said in this video.


Now I didn't know tobacco could be grown so far up north commercially, how are the average summer temperatures and how long is the growing/drying season?

Typically today Tobacco is grown in North Carolina. You need a sandy loam soil to grow it. In North Carolina they have more than enough time to grow tobacco. Up in Southern Ontario, you have to get it in after the spring frosts around May 20 and out by September 20 before the frost. But the tobacco is planted in the greenhouse in March, so 6 months start to finish.

For drying, tobacco is dried in a kiln. There is an element of skill or artisanry here.

Remember it's a controlled substance, so you might have to understand the laws in your state.
 

john_Jea

Sparrow
You need a sandy loam soil to grow it

Don't have that... the soil here is very nutritious and allows water to flow through at a reasonable pace, but it contains very little sand and clay. The advantages of sandy loam are how water drains through it and the air in the soil, correct?

Up in Southern Ontario, you have to get it in after the spring frosts around May 20 and out by September 20 before the frost. But the tobacco is planted in the greenhouse in March, so 6 months start to finish.

That would be the same time frame I have to work with, I will probably need to figure out some set up to keep heat on the seeds/seedlings, I have seen some diverse info on how to sprout and grow them initially so I'm not quite sure how I'll go about that.

For drying, tobacco is dried in a kiln. There is an element of skill or artisanry here.

I think I´ll do a DIY fridge kiln since I already have a fridge, I need to look more into that tho.

Remember it's a controlled substance, so you might have to understand the laws in your state.

The only law regarding tobacco here is that only the government can import it. I also saw some people in the papers growing it so I think I'm good (as long as I don't try to sell it).
 

NoMoreTO

Ostrich
I completed my first year farming this year on a 60 acre plot on a small farm I bought just before the pandemic. I'm looking to get into livestock, but am also considering a hay operation on some family land for profit and to provide Hay to my livestock. I also am planning to do more cuts of hay next season to stock my barn while I build my fence and habitat for the animals.

For Hay, I got in with a medium sized custom farmer who has been in the game a long time. I leaned on his knowledge and also his equipment and skills. The entry price for farm equipment to get started would have been at least 50K. For myself, if I knew I was going into something longer term with hay, I might want to get better equipment than the cheapest stuff. Old equipment isn't always the cheap equipment with higher long term maintenance issues and pain in the ass factor. Not saying it can't be done on the cheap, but it depends on your skillset. Fixing equipment that I just bought doesn't seem like a good idea.

We grew oats as a cover crop, with pasture underneath. We combined about 30 acres of oats. This gave us about half straw, and half hay.

We did both large rounds and small squares.

- For planting, I leaned on him for the land prep, and bought a brillion seeder to put down my pasture. He ended up drilling in some oats as a cover crop and I went behind him with the seeder.
- For the small squares, I provided the labour with a couple nephews and a buddy. It was a hustle for an office guy like me, but it was a good chance to learn. I've got a hayloft so I put all the small squares up there to fill the barn up. If you're not living on the farm, these are a bit of a pain to sell. I went down there tonight to sell 8 for $40. Which feels more like a not for profit right now. But hoping to get some steady customers coming back.
- For the Large Rounds, I brought the tractor which pulled his wagons up to the barn, and I used a bobcat to load the bales onto the wagons. I was expecting to have people come to my farm and have to load them up, but we ended up shipping the bales out direct off the field to a big local feedlot.

Next year I'd like to outsource a little less. I might pick up a small square baler and basically do that part on my own. It's just as cost effective at the moment to have him come over and do the mowing and raking, but not sure.

Buying good equipment takes time. Especially if you're looking on a budget. For myself, I like the idea of having my go to guy, then leaning into certain parts over time. It took me months to find a good used tractor at a fair price, and the time spent searching was a big saving.

The other thing to think about is forage, up here we likely have similar weather to Michigan. All the guys do their late cut in wrapped forage, because the hay doesn't have enough light or heat to dry. Because I'm in the pasture game and I was paying my custom guy, I didn't cut for forage in september, I decided to let it root in. But all the guys running with their own gear doing hay seem to be doing this.

A bit of a ramble but this is my rookie experience. I also found my hay wasn't quite the primo hay I thought it would be, and margins were pretty tight. Part of that is that I was paying a guy to help me, but the cheque you gotta cut for machinery is large.

All in all a good year.
 

NoMoreTO

Ostrich
My brother mentioned to me that "yak cheese goes for a ton of money"

Anyway, I started reading up about the yak.
Thirty years ago, there were virtually no yak in the United States, and just a handful on exotic animal farms in Europe and huge ranches in Canada.

Today industry members estimate there at least 7,500 of the animals being raised in North America, from Alberta to Tennessee. Yak farmers are supplying specialty restaurants, co-ops, and butcher shops with a grass-fed bovine meat as lean as bison.
Awareness of what yak farmers call the “mountain cow” or “grunting ox” has been chugging upward since. Its reputation as calmer than bison and smarter than cattle helps.
Yak Article

Then I found the YakMan
 

Pendleton

Pelican
I completed my first year farming this year on a 60 acre plot on a small farm I bought just before the pandemic. I'm looking to get into livestock, but am also considering a hay operation on some family land for profit and to provide Hay to my livestock. I also am planning to do more cuts of hay next season to stock my barn while I build my fence and habitat for the animals.

For Hay, I got in with a medium sized custom farmer who has been in the game a long time. I leaned on his knowledge and also his equipment and skills. The entry price for farm equipment to get started would have been at least 50K. For myself, if I knew I was going into something longer term with hay, I might want to get better equipment than the cheapest stuff. Old equipment isn't always the cheap equipment with higher long term maintenance issues and pain in the ass factor. Not saying it can't be done on the cheap, but it depends on your skillset. Fixing equipment that I just bought doesn't seem like a good idea.

We grew oats as a cover crop, with pasture underneath. We combined about 30 acres of oats. This gave us about half straw, and half hay.

We did both large rounds and small squares.

- For planting, I leaned on him for the land prep, and bought a brillion seeder to put down my pasture. He ended up drilling in some oats as a cover crop and I went behind him with the seeder.
- For the small squares, I provided the labour with a couple nephews and a buddy. It was a hustle for an office guy like me, but it was a good chance to learn. I've got a hayloft so I put all the small squares up there to fill the barn up. If you're not living on the farm, these are a bit of a pain to sell. I went down there tonight to sell 8 for $40. Which feels more like a not for profit right now. But hoping to get some steady customers coming back.
- For the Large Rounds, I brought the tractor which pulled his wagons up to the barn, and I used a bobcat to load the bales onto the wagons. I was expecting to have people come to my farm and have to load them up, but we ended up shipping the bales out direct off the field to a big local feedlot.

Next year I'd like to outsource a little less. I might pick up a small square baler and basically do that part on my own. It's just as cost effective at the moment to have him come over and do the mowing and raking, but not sure.

Buying good equipment takes time. Especially if you're looking on a budget. For myself, I like the idea of having my go to guy, then leaning into certain parts over time. It took me months to find a good used tractor at a fair price, and the time spent searching was a big saving.

The other thing to think about is forage, up here we likely have similar weather to Michigan. All the guys do their late cut in wrapped forage, because the hay doesn't have enough light or heat to dry. Because I'm in the pasture game and I was paying my custom guy, I didn't cut for forage in september, I decided to let it root in. But all the guys running with their own gear doing hay seem to be doing this.

A bit of a ramble but this is my rookie experience. I also found my hay wasn't quite the primo hay I thought it would be, and margins were pretty tight. Part of that is that I was paying a guy to help me, but the cheque you gotta cut for machinery is large.

All in all a good year.
Did you buy land that was already being used for farming and pick up where the last owner left off or did you repurpose the land?
 

NoMoreTO

Ostrich
Did you buy land that was already being used for farming and pick up where the last owner left off or did you repurpose the land?

It was Corn and Beans before, I put in a hay field this year with oats as a cover crop. I hope to repurpose the land and bring in animals.

I sold my large bales and am selling my small bales over the winter to local farmers. Delivering 110 this saturday, weather permitting.

This year has been interesting learning the hay game. I actually heard about a hay field a guy might want to rent. That'd save me the land prep and seed costs.
 
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NoMoreTO

Ostrich
In Canada Ag Real Estate Prices are going absolutely wild. I bought my farm in Februrary so managed to sneak in just before the money printing began.

35% of USD have been printed since MARCH 2020. They can print more dollars but they can't make more land. Farm prices have probably bumped 20% here since March.

Lately, I've heard rental rates are flying right now too. Hay is in short supply this winter, so I should have no issue selling my small squares.
I'm actually considering fully gearing up with hay machinery as a better store of value than the dollar. Plus you can add your labour to it to make it work. Commodity prices are up, Corn was good this year, Soybean prices are very high.

I look at this whole system we have, and I think the problem is that the farmers are getting too big. So they will be easier to control with all this agenda 2030 stuff, because they have alot more invested and to lose. I am hoping that more small scale farming comes into style. It will be an uphill battle, but as the economy in the area takes a hit, more people will be looking to agriculture. I'm trying to get my feet up and under me so to speak before the collapse.
 

NoMoreTO

Ostrich
3 Acres and a Cow.

A Catholic (Christian) Perspective on Integralism, living off the land, etc.

The industrial revolution turned society into a de facto matriarchy, as the man works outside of the home.

The idea of balancing home and work life an be replaced with "integralism". On the farm, work and home life are one.

By tending to the Garden, we work with God and his grace to perfect his creation.

 

NoMoreTO

Ostrich
I recently bumped into a deloitte article from a linkedin contact on the future of farming - the timelines are staggering.

Deloitte - Future of Food

future_Farming.JPG

I own a farm and grew up in a farm family and am living in a rural farming community. Aside from the big fertilizer, pesticide, seed companies, and what we call "industrial farmers", nobody wants this. This is the corporate world telling the farmer what they want to do, rather than to speak to farmers who actually know. There is no shortage of the food supply at present, forecasts provided are Malthusian and have taken place for a very long time. Regarding the mass infusion of technology and robots, there is a concept in farming which in the business world would be known as "anti fragile", bringing in massive technology actually makes the farm fragile, and fully dependent on suppliers who service this machinery etc. The recent pushback on John Deere Models that do not allow the farmer to exercise his RIGHT to fix his own machinery are an example of this. Regarding "73% of consumers wanting sustainable products", this stat does not really apply. People want NATURAL food, not grown in a lab. They want animals that can graze and are treated humanely. Plant based food is being pushed hard and seen very sad results, the only benefit is that it can sit on the shelf in the meat section indefinitely before being sold. This is our land.
 

Gazeebo

Pigeon
Orthodox
I hope everyone is doing well here and I have enjoyed reading about yall's farming experiences. My layd and I have moved to a new house with some land that we would like to utilize however it is considered floodplains. Just looking for some advice on what would be the best idea to grow and how to grow it. My initial thoughts have been to build raised boxes for the plants which so far has been my best thoughts about it. I have also thought about building one on the ground just to see how it holds up for the year. Any constructive opinions on what to do with this land would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you.
 

Easy_C

Peacock
I recently bumped into a deloitte article from a linkedin contact on the future of farming - the timelines are staggering.

Deloitte - Future of Food

View attachment 28299

I own a farm and grew up in a farm family and am living in a rural farming community. Aside from the big fertilizer, pesticide, seed companies, and what we call "industrial farmers", nobody wants this. This is the corporate world telling the farmer what they want to do, rather than to speak to farmers who actually know. There is no shortage of the food supply at present, forecasts provided are Malthusian and have taken place for a very long time. Regarding the mass infusion of technology and robots, there is a concept in farming which in the business world would be known as "anti fragile", bringing in massive technology actually makes the farm fragile, and fully dependent on suppliers who service this machinery etc. The recent pushback on John Deere Models that do not allow the farmer to exercise his RIGHT to fix his own machinery are an example of this. Regarding "73% of consumers wanting sustainable products", this stat does not really apply. People want NATURAL food, not grown in a lab. They want animals that can graze and are treated humanely. Plant based food is being pushed hard and seen very sad results, the only benefit is that it can sit on the shelf in the meat section indefinitely before being sold. This is our land.

Deloitte is a good company to follow for intel purposes. I’ve met their US CEO (A Davos attendee who is very much in on it) and they signal the Agenda 2030 plans pretty aggressively.
 

NoMoreTO

Ostrich
I hope everyone is doing well here and I have enjoyed reading about yall's farming experiences. My layd and I have moved to a new house with some land that we would like to utilize however it is considered floodplains. Just looking for some advice on what would be the best idea to grow and how to grow it. My initial thoughts have been to build raised boxes for the plants which so far has been my best thoughts about it. I have also thought about building one on the ground just to see how it holds up for the year. Any constructive opinions on what to do with this land would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you.

That's interesting stuff. I've never dealt with them. Would you be able to graze livestock or chickens when the floodplains draw back?

I wonder if there is a grass that would do alright in floodplains. Or would it wash out.

How many days of the year are the plains actually flooded?
 

Laner

Hummingbird
Gold Member
3 Acres and a Cow.

A Catholic (Christian) Perspective on Integralism, living off the land, etc.

The industrial revolution turned society into a de facto matriarchy, as the man works outside of the home.

The idea of balancing home and work life an be replaced with "integralism". On the farm, work and home life are one.

By tending to the Garden, we work with God and his grace to perfect his creation.


The happiest I have ever been was this past spring when I moved my family out to my farm due to batshit crazy bureaucrats locking down the whole city.

Morning workouts with my son. Work for an hour. Coffee with my wife. Work and watch my wife in the garden, chat, help out. Lunch with my family. Work. Afternoon coffee with my wife. Son would work shadow me. Early evening chores together. Dinner. Farm walk around and lock up. Chat with neighbors doing the same. Kids to bed. Quiet time with my wife. Sleeping with a shotgun beside the bed. Being woken by any sound not nocturnal. The cold air on my face under my grandmothers heavy handmade quilts. Pleasant sleeps and a deep feeling of gratitude in my dreams.

I come from a strange mix of peoples but they were all humble and adaptable. It really felt I was in my place. I had more testosterone. We had more sex. Life just made more sense.
 

Gazeebo

Pigeon
Orthodox
That's interesting stuff. I've never dealt with them. Would you be able to graze livestock or chickens when the floodplains draw back?

I wonder if there is a grass that would do alright in floodplains. Or would it wash out.

How many days of the year are the plains actually flooded?
Sorry for the long layoff on this message. Trying to get a job has been not the easiest thing so far in 2021.

It does not stay flooded everyday and it really takes a very long rain (hurricane type weather) to really show it as a bog. Its very fertile soil in my opinion we have two different magnolias we have been maintaining after we found them a spouts out of the ground. Grass always grows down there but the issues I have been having is the privet and english ivy. Both are very invasive and very annoying. We have beat back the privet outside out fence line but the ivy is a constant pain. Im still thinking the boxes will be the best idea because I believe an uncontained garden would not work well.
 
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