Poly-Cultural Farming?

Someone asked me a while back why we started Gardens Spot Farms. I gave the usual answers, Oh it was something different to do. We wanted to eat better because wanted to feel better and I found the concept of poly-cultural farming interesting.

I just threw it out there when the next question came, “what the heck is Poly-Cultural farming”?

Hmmm, I hadn’t even realized I was throwing out some technical greeny phrase. it would be a good idea to have a way to explain this ancient but new way of raising animals on a small farm.

When we first decided to raise our fryers we were in the dark as to how to do it efficiently and humanely. We started reading volumes and volumes of information on chickens and what they eat, how they act on pasture or in confined spaces, etc. etc.

After all this reading and research it just seemed so natural to raise them how they’ve been living since the beginning of time.

Let them roam in the fields scratching for insects and grit to eat and to make sure they have plenty of grass and fresh water. Of course we augmented their food with peas, barley, hay and some natural vitamins. Let them do what chickens do which is what chickens do. So profound don’t you think.

What we discovered when we took them to as close as nature as we could while still protecting then were happy poultry, contented and I might add delicious.

We soon discovered other systems for raising and butchering chickens. Large commercial processing plants that if you saw them would shock you to your core.

What we discovered was the beginning of our paradigm shift. What we saw  happening in our food processing plants and the huge warehouse that held our future food destined for our table, truly made us sick and we decided there and then we had to be the voice of change and champions of a different way of life.

A better way to raise animals and a more humane way to get them to our tables. We made a move to a more natural way of eating, living and farming.

One of the great things about raising pastured poultry is that you have complete control over what your birds eat, where they spend their days and how they end their lives.

We Love the 4 Seasons

Being Papa at the farm, I do love to see the coming of spring when everything begins to wake up after a long winters sleep.

Wasn’t a hard winter, thank the Lord, it was and is very beautiful.

I also appreciate the quiet mornings when the forest and the fields give off that crisp and cold feeling and the air freezes as it’s pulled into my lungs. Sure makes that HOT cup of coffee taste pretty damn good!

Winter’s a great season for getting some family time in. Sitting by the fire with the grand kids, planning the up-coming year.

It’s the time when you slow down and appreciate what was accomplished last year. Healthy pasture raised chicken and pork in the freezer, potatoes and onions in the root cellar and hard cider ready to be enjoyed.

I must say the good Lord has helped us in our hard work and in our endeavors to live a more self sustainable life style.

I do love the winter but the winter solstace passes and the next thing you know spring!! Yes babies are popping up all over the place.

Pasture needs attention, asparagus and rhubarb need harvesting and the fences, always the fences need work. Thank God my son-in-law who’s young and strong and is the owner along with his wife (my charming daughter) and 3 kids can do the heavy lifting.

chicksOur little porkers arrived on Sunday the 18th.

Chicks arrived March 24th and our little porkers arrived on Sunday the 18th.

I’d like to sit down and have another cup of mocha but as my 3 year old grandson Jack says “Papa, let’s do it” He’s the one on the left next to Gus his brother. Looks like he’s ready.Jack and Gus - lets do it

Who doesn’t love SPRING!.

Bread of life

Laurie and I have been talking about what to sell at the farmers market next year. It can be bit of a challenge for market gardeners who can’t afford a hoop house or green house large enough for starting early season seedlings and… that’s us, having to wait to get into the garden for planting.

It can be a lean time at the market until July when the veggies are all coming on . So I I said let’s sell your baby quilts, some socks and other knitted items. We can sell eggs of course and how about…. some artisan breads.

Artisan Breads

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I’ve started experimenting with different breads. There are so many great recipes out there.  Where to start?

I’ve been craving baguettes for making bruschetta. AND….. who can forget bread  for dipping into homemade Pasta Fagioli, Clam and Pesto Soup and Clam Chowder?

So I bought a larger stone and a pizza peel and off I go. Let’s see how that works out.