Flower Farming Fun
What to see on the farm
livestock - miniature milking cows, miniature draft horses, of course, chickens, flower gardens, high tunnels, greenhouses, bog filter mini-pond, fruit orchard, hops, mini-vineyard, and a
flower stand (out of an old pickup bed).
Start with a tour of the farm to get the lay of the land.
You will learn a bit about regenerative agriculture and how that works with our flower farming operation.
Our farming processes using livestock helps in creating habitats for bees, birds, butterflies, and other beneficials.
Flowers are our reward from nature!
Lots of things go into a family farm:
planning, researching, visualizing, creating, and the day-to-day caring for all the parts. And YES, even some blood, sweat, and tears. But also, a heck of a lot of JOY and connection with the earth that really makes it worthwhile.
It's good for all of us to find some time to reconnect with nature. It's a kind of grounding to touch something real, not man-made.
Here are some pictures of what you would see on our farm as we have developed over the last 4 years. The fun is in seeing your work bring make a difference in the real world.
Miniature Jersey Milking Cows
Come spring, April & May, we will have newborn calves.
We don't milk the cows the first few months after delivery because we want the calves to get off to a good
start on Mom's milk!
You will NOT see any of those tiny hutches that dairy calves are isolated into once born, on our farm.
Calves nurse on their mothers and play in the fields.
are a prized asset on our farm. Not only do they provide delicious eggs but they stir up the soil and eat the bugs. We use the composted material from their pens to add to the garden soil. It is very rich in nutrients! When they follow the cows they eat the larvae before they turn into flies.
We said goodby to the guinea hens, after they ate the ticks and other bugs, as they were just too noisy ALL the time.
The most serious predator we have on the farm,
that seems to think we are providing a salad bar for them... are gophers. They can wipe out beds of beautifully growing plants, flowers and veggies, and fruit trees before you turn around! YIKES
We've been researching ways to protect our growing beds. Jim has been trapped away but there is always someone ready to move right in when a vacancy occurs.
He is currently experimenting with putting a gopher wire wall down 3 ft deep to surround our growing area. The gophers come up to that wall and can't find a way through it. If the info is correct, it will last for 10 years.
Pricey and labor-intensive but very valuable plants can disappear almost overnight. A Flower Farm operation can't have its products disappearing just when they are most beautiful.
Sad to say but I lost 50% of my tubers
in just one season until I realized who was dining, uninvited, on the farm.
We have two "miniature" Halflinger draft horses for pulling buggies and farming equipment. We've also had true miniature horses to pull buggies but they were not strong enough to pull a plow.
A draft horse is big in the chest. You can ride them but their forte is pulling.
The usual ones you may see are the giant Clydesdales for Anheuser Bush.
Our ladies are much smaller and don't eat TWO bales of hay a day.
It's important to size livestock to the amount of land you have.
Our goal is small farm-appropriate livestock.