Farming Can Be Expensive, But I Love It


Brenda ArthurFarming – even for your own needs can be expensive – not real sure we are saving any money. In fact, unless my math this morning is way off – we are eating probably the worlds most expensive eggs at a hard cost of $6.33 per dozen (no that doesn’t factor in any labor or bedding – just feed!) I couldn’t even ask for that kind of money for the eggs – who would buy them? And we are likely drinking the world’s most expensive milk this winter (I don’t even want to know what that is costing me)!


Non-GMO/organic grains to supplement the free-range poultry and the cows’ diet is quite expensive, as is the organic hay and the straw they need in the winter. Factor in that the hens lay far fewer eggs in winter than in the warmer months and we have only one cow of the five that is currently milking, and I am running a farm in deep, dark red each winter month! No, I won’t make a huge profit, if any, come warmer months when the hens' laying picks up – likely only recoup summer feed costs and maybe, hopefully, put back enough to give a little help with the following winter’s feed bill.


And then there is the garden. We grow most all of our own produce – enough to sustain us throughout the year until the next summer’s harvest is ready. Yes, seeds are relatively inexpensive and the hard-cost for growing is almost nothing compared to buying at a grocery store. However gardening and preserving the harvest is probably the most labor-intensive part of growing our own food. This past year we decided to double the size of the garden so we could sell some of our fresh, organically raised vegetables. Things were off to a great start and all was growing really well with the perfect amounts of rain and sunny days, it looked like it was going to be a great harvest and we might make a few dollars as well. That is until I accidentally left the gate to the garden undone. (Or it could have been that my cows are smart and know how to undo gate chains!) Anyway, all the cows found their way into the garden, trampling and eating to their stomachs content. Thankfully we caught them before all was lost and were able to salvage about half of our produce – enough for us but not enough to sell at market.


12/30/2014 7:02:30 AM

I too love watching plants grow from tiny little seeds. I am always amazed that so much can come from something so little! We try a new vegetable plant or two each year - some we will grow again and others not. Pumpkins is something my hubby wants to grow - though he doesn't like to eat them. Think we will try the all white ones this coming summer! Happy Gardening!

12/27/2014 11:29:41 AM

Brenda, I don't exactly farm but I am a self proclaimed Urban Farmer. I have two garden properties with five raised beds in my back yard. My eye is on another vacant lot but haven't made up my mind if I should buy it or not. Do garden to say money? Nope that's not it. Do I garden because of the taste or knowing what's been put on the soil to grow the vegetables? Nope that's not it. Do I garden to be self sufficient? Nope that's not it either. I garden because I just like to grow things. It's amazing to me every year that life comes out of some of the tiniest seeds and becomes large plants. Most of what I grow I give away. I do keep some for me and have preserved a small portion but the love of caring for the soil and nurturing the plants into healthy producers makes my adrenalin run out of control. Gardening spawns ideas for rain water storage self watering all gravity systems. There's always something new to try that comes from the winter research months. This year it's going to be giant pumpkins as a novelty. The potential is for 1000 pound pumpkins but even if I only get a 100 or 200 pound pumpkin it will be the talk of the neighborhood. My gardening is just for fun and not for any thing else. ***** Have a great country life day.

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