Tuesday it was raining, so when I finished applying the siding boards, trim and roof, I decided to cover the entire project with some plastic left over from my last high tunnel cover change. For folks who haven’t been following along on this project, may I suggest that you review my previous two posts.

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On February 1st my flat bed trailer entered the garage and construction began on the well pump house. Other than having to purchase more screws from my local Home Depot, it appears that everything required is on hand. I say that, somewhat confidently, as the project is essentially complete short only the application of the cedar siding. The most interesting part of the project has been planning how to assemble everything with only limited ceiling clearance. I left one wall open until the very end to allow access to the interior since the house is built lying on its back with the future door opening on the top.

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I have to admit to slacking off on my blog updates. Ever since purchasing a 40 acre parcel of land for an additional wood lot and grazing space, I’ve been consumed with the task of clearing, fencing and providing water and electricity to a 3 acre pasture area. Since it is located in the middle of nowhere, solar power and high tensile electric fence are the most affordable choices. To minimize regrowth after clearing, my plan is to get cattle out there as quickly as possible. I’ll lower the stump cuts but leave the root balls to compost.

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Well, here we are in January! Officially Winter with several days of single digit temperatures and snow on the ground. Usually this is when I start paying particular attention to both my wood pile and hay loft as a quick mental calculation, based upon current consumption rates, triggers either contentment or concern.

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In its purest, most honest form, farm-to-table, also known as farm to fork, means the table is actually at the origination farm and the food is produced, prepared, cooked and served at that farm. Several years ago a member of our market cooperative decided to see how long she could satisfy her family utilizing only those foods produced on her small farm. It was an experiment, of course, but an honest evaluation of her independent sustainability.

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Why Are So Many Farmers Markets Failing ?

The comfortable answer is “because the market is saturated”, but there are many more subtle economic reasons. This is my attempt at answers for why so many local markets have closed.

      • Farmers markets charge fees for participation since there are usually additional costs involved such as management, advertising, facility rental etc.
      • Most, if not all, markets require participants to provide proof of liability insurance for their products. Typical coverage required is a million dollar policy, sometimes more.

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Stuffed and ready for the oven

Thank goodness we don’t harvest poultry very often. I forgot how long it takes to set up and clean up afterward. The actual event went smoothly however and my estimate regarding weight was right on! The tom came in at 35.3 lbs and the hen at 25.8 lbs. Both birds went into refrigeration and we went out again to clean the chicken coop and spread dry shavings. We carved all the meat off the hen to grind and package in one pound freezer bags – ended up with almost sixteen pounds.

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Perhaps it’s because time is going by so quickly these days, or maybe because my memory is fading. Regardless of the cause, I decided to start a sort of diary of daily (or likely weekly) events that occur here on the farm. In today’s vernacular it’s called a ‘blog’, so here I am on day one…

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