It’s a word that’s used frequently lately, and I used it a lot myself working at a natural food co-op for over a decade. I always had a vague idea of what it meant when it was describing the way something was produced or the general idea that we were all trying to lead a more sustainable life and leave a smaller foot print, but when we made the decision to farm the idea started to become more concrete for me. We want and need to make the farm sustainable in itself in the way we choose to farm and also make living on a farm financially sustainable in what we choose to spend our money on.
The best thing we can do in farming practices would be to bring as few of what is commonly called inputs onto the farm. So we will be working towards breeding all of our animals and eventually growing our own hay. In the small amount I have read about farming and experienced at other farms I have a feeling the more diverse your farm is as far as what you grow and the many different kinds of animals you raise can not only enrich your soil and the overall health of your farm but help in its long term sustainability. Those are all goals that we will chip away at overtime but in the immediate future we want to grow as much of our own food as possible. We are missing the abundance of veggies we had in our city garden so even though we were planning on just doing cover crops this year, someone couldn’t wait and tilled additional garden space around the cover crops we planted so we could get a little something started. It was nice to finally have something we could do together as a family, even though it was much more challenging then planting in our little raised beds we had in the city.
It took us awhile to figure out how to all work together on such a large project. There was a lot of arguing about who was going to do what and lots of little feet stepping on plants but eventually everyone found their own task, and when things got out of hand there was a berry eating break. By the looks of these photos it seems like we are getting a lot of free child labor but I swear there is no reason for the feds to come knocking on our door.