Sunday, November 6, 2011

Gentleman Farmer

I am, I guess a gentleman farmer.  Wikipedia states, "A gentleman's farm is an extremely small or non-operative farm. They are generally small acreages that are not used to produce large amounts of food, grain, or livestock for major markets."  So my farm does meet that definition.  Yet I also think of the term in days past when a gentleman's farm was a working farm but held by a person of means who didn't rely on the farm for their livelihood.  Not that I am a person of means by any means.  I would rather say I am a modern gentleman farmer.  I want the farm to be productive, support the community as well as ourselves and contribute positively to the world we live in but we need to go to work at other jobs at this point in our lives to support us.  However,  nothing would please us more than to be able to have the farm our full-time employment.  We look to the next harvest season as winter approaches.  How can we produce more?  How can we increase our yields or what else can we grow?  Where do we place our efforts to maximize our potential?  We do have to sit down and revise our 5 year plan and 10 year plan.  We started with one dream of a lavender farm, and though that is our main focus, we have come to look at the farm as not just a lavender farm.  It is becoming more like the family farm of old.  It produces the fruits and vegetables that sustain us.  Apples from our orchard, berries from our raspberry bushes, strawberries from the garden, garlic to flavor the food that we grew in the garden as well as the herbs that we dry for winter.  Like the farm that is gradually becoming that full, working environment we too have gradually given ourselves over to a new way of eating.  Our food isn't only what the local supermarket can provide but what we can provide for ourselves.  Our goal is to be more self reliant, more independent more sustainable and to be a farm and a farm family.

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