My Mini Farm Life

6.3.14 / garden beds

my garden beds, a team effort between Dan and me

Okay, full disclosure: My home is definitely not a farm as you would traditionally think of one (although I have nicknamed it The Homestead). It’s really only vaguely country-fied in the sense that I have my little garden going on in the backyard and the house came with a cute clothesline. As you can see, I’ve started with a pretty small garden: two beds, eight kinds of vegetables. I have some books and resources, but I’m also learning as I go and occasionally just winging it, so small was the best way to start for me. However, everything is doing quite well to varying degrees so far, so I’m confident that I’ll be able to expand next year. Still, it’s not the several acres I imagine having someday, with apple trees and berry bushes and three or four different farm animals (plus barn cats, of course). Instead, it’s less than an acre, with a few foods growing out back and an indoor cat who runs away when you open the front door. It’s my mini farm, at most.
6.3.14 / pea plants
6.3.14 / herb garden box

pea plants, which are doing wonderfully / a new box Dan recently built for herbs from the farmer’s market–with only basil for now

To give myself a bit of credit, I do what I can right now without trying to get too deep in anything, and I like to think this is just a step in achieving my dream goal of that several acres someday. Even just next year we’ll hopefully expand a little, if not in space then in what we have and produce. We’re already planning on adding at least two more garden beds, as well as thinking of the best way to bring in chickens–where to house them, mostly. (I think we’re allowed up to five according to the town laws.) I’d also like to work on getting bees, but that might be too ambitious for next year. That might mean it’s a goal for 2016, that’s all.
6.3.14 / tomato plants

tomato plants, another group that’s doing well
I love watching everything I’ve planted get a little taller each day, and being surprised when things pop up overnight. For the longest time my peppers didn’t seem to be doing anything, and I was beginning to think I’d have to restart them, but a day or two after I began considering that, the little green sprouts appeared and I noticed them walking in from work. And yesterday I finally managed to do my laundry early enough in the day that I could hang it out on the line. (Unfortunately, I also got a dozen or so bug bites in the process.) It’s not like it’s anything fancy or I’m the only one who does it or there aren’t people who do any of these things not because they want to but because they genuinely have to; rather, it’s just the fact that I can and I want to and I do, and all of it feels so fulfilling in big and little ways. It’s about what doing all of this means to me, so even if it’s still a teeny, tiny bit of “farm life,” it’s good.
6.3.14 / clothesline
my little clothesline that came with the house

There’s also so much I still want to learn. I’ll need to figure out how to collect seeds from everything I’ve planted this year to save myself from having to buy new ones next year.  I want to learn how to start preserving and canning, and we have the perfect spot in the basement for storage. I just want all the plants and I want all the knowledge–but I know it’s going to be a while before I get those things.

It’s just this dream that keeps growing with each bit of it I achieve.

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3 thoughts on “My Mini Farm Life

  1. I love your garden area!! It looks great. What size are your beds if you don’t mind my asking? We are thinking of adding more beds next year (we’re only doing one 4×8′ bed this year) and I like the square ones. I’m behind; still haven’t built the bed. This weekend’s project!
    I went the same gardening route as you did when I started last year. About 50% books/knowledge 50% winging it. Something I recommend if you’re at all interested is keeping a gardening journal. I didn’t do anything fancy, just jotted down what seeds I used (and types of veggies, as in specific type of tomatoes, etc) and when I planted. Then I would jot down progress every couple of weeks. I found it a really good reference for this year!

    • Ours are 4′ x 4′, and I think I really like the size for now. We’ll probably add two more of the same next year. The herb box is also 3′ x 1′, and it seems to be working out, though I eventually want a whole herb garden out front by the porch, I think.
      I definitely keep meaning to put together a gardening journal! It’d be so good to look back on next year when I expand.

  2. this is so wonderful! i want to have an herb garden but with all my job switching and business starting it has been pushed down the priority list. i’m happy to hear you are growing closer to your dream everyday (pun totally intended)

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