Green Scene Blog: The homestead emerges


For some reason, some of the people we know like to ask us how things are going on our "farm." This despite the fact that we make our living with computers, have never earned a dime by growing food, and do not own a tractor or overalls. When we get that question, we usually shuffle our feet and say "Well, it’s really a garden…"

But dang if it isn’t starting to feel kinda farmy around here.

For one thing, we’re getting the Garden of 2012 off to a lovely start, and we’re noticing how much better organized and equipped we are these days than in the past. We’ve got our seed-starting shelves, lights and homemade heat mats. We know how to mix up potting soil, and we have lists and records that tell us what to plant when. (The tomatoes and cabbages are already sprouting!)

Outside, we’re cleaning out garden beds and we’ve put down a couple of truckloads of horse manure. We got the poop from two different sources and, as I shoveled it into our beat-up garden cart, I found myself noting the subtle differences in texture, weight, composition…THAT definitely made me feel farmy.

Most importantly, though:

We are the delighted guardians of mammalian livestock!

As of last Saturday, our two wonderful goats are officially at work eating everything in sight. We are thrilled with their performance thus far, and we’re already quite fond of them. They eat malted barley out of our hands, and clamber around on brush piles in a most fetching manner.

To my mind, somehow, the electrical line running from the chicken area to the goat area (both are enclosed with electric fence) makes our place a farm. Or maybe we should say "homestead." Whatever the term, there’s infrastructure and intention and multiple systems working together. It all feels very exciting.

Plus, the chickens are laying again!