Self-Sufficiency

Boer Goats, Fin and Merino Sheep, and Chickens and Meat Rabbits.  These are the things I am trying to acquire.  Why you ask?  Well, I am trying become more self-sustaining.  I want to know where my food has been, what is has been fed, how it has been handled and cared for.  I am trying to get a large plot of my five acres turned into a vegatable and fruit garden. I am trying to learn how to make perserves and canning my food.  I would also like to turn some of my basement into a cold cellar.  I have been researching boar goats for my freezer for a while now and am finding it an easy prospect to raise them.  I will be receiving a lamb this summer so that I can breed her this winter for lambing in the spring, for fleece and lamb meat.  I have got chickens hatching next week and more meat chicks to pick up this week from another farm.  All to be butchered for freezing this winter.    I am still researching meat rabbits for which I have a contact an hour away that does so commercially that I will be getting in touch with soon.  $$$$  It all comes down to $$$$  I need it to start saving it.  How ironic can this cycle be?!    I will be taking a class through my Cornell Cooperative Extension on the 17th of May for pasture management and Famacha(sp?) training.  I am also enrolled in an online course through Langston University for Meat Goat Operations Certification.  I have realized that I cannot obtain the Ag Tax Deduction due to the limitations it has with in NY State.  I cannot earn 50,000$ in under 10 acres of land with this kind of livestock.  So, I will be selling only for local markets to help reduce the costs of raising the meat we keep for ourselves.  It cannot be considered a business, sadly.  I am meeting tons of folks who are willing to share their knowledge and time so that I can learn from them and choose my own path.  It is pretty cool.  There is so much I would love to dive right into, but $ will always hold me back from that.  Always two steps behind.  Oh well.  I will figure out a way to start but it will just not be my ideal way of going.  Who’s ideals are ever really truely met with immediate satisfaction?  No one that I know of.    So this is my small part to help my family and local community reduce its foot print on this land.  There are so many reasons for pursueing this lifestyle but this is one of them.

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One thought on “Self-Sufficiency

  1. yea, we’d buy surplus meat off ya.
    we have a lovely cavy stud. more than happy to loan his services if you’d like to try the fine art of guinea pigs for meat. otherwise we won’t be able to experience the miracle of life here in the city.

    and of course, you’re more than welcome to have some hayseeds, perfect for green manure in future beds. or any number of other seeds that i have in excess with no space or time to grow this season. my tomatoes are germinating at 20% but the peas and beans are running at 90%. want some legume plants?

    i can tell that our basement used to be cold storage, but it is so damp with so many other organisms, i’m leary of using it for root storage. i’d be so happy if i could get a chest freezer down there. that would make a big difference. i’m not too keen on canning, but i think i could handle a blanch and freeze.

    i suspect the best thing i can do in addition to upping my winter storage capacity is to get 2 more growlights to start things up in late february instead of mid-april. so many things are looking for a start date at least 6 weeks before the frost, if not 10.

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