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Country Discussion Topics
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Living the Dream: A Farm
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PigletPincher    Posted 11-03-2004 at 09:26:18       [Reply]  [Send Email]
People we are moving to a small home in the country where we can have a farm.
There is a barn, a fenced pasture.
We will be living in the Benton/Paducah KY area.

I want a pony, a milkcow, chickens, ducks, and *ALL* the optional extras.

Now tell me: where do I start?

Give me any advice, tips, instructions on anything to do with country livin'. Even websites.

I am SO excited!!!

EngineerJoyce    Posted 11-04-2004 at 08:49:27       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I was just through there on Tuesday.
The deer and wild turkey population is overstocked. Better check with neighbors to see if they have trouble with them eating the garden - and if so, ask what keeps them out.

"Farm" for some people means a single acre and for some it takes at least 100 to be useful. The size of yours and the soil type wil determine what it is good for. Get a published soils book (free) from your local Conservation District. Talk to the NRCS District Conservationist about your farm, soil, and its capabilities - get them to show you how to use the soils book. Every county here has one. email me and I can give you a name and number.

For any livestock, appropriate housing / fencing should be done PRIOR to getting the animal. If you don't, you will instantly understand my comment.

The soils are deep there, but flooding is also a prominent problem. Be sure you know about any local flooding and if any part of the farm is within a 100 year flood zone (don't build anything there).

And above all else, ENJOY!!!

Joe    Posted 11-03-2004 at 19:05:28       [Reply]  [Send Email]
One thing; Start small. You'll thank me in the morning.

Mike in tn    Posted 11-03-2004 at 14:43:26       [Reply]  [No Email]
Be very careful in selecting a pony. They can be mean little animals. Some are like dogs, except they don't growl before they bite. I have had much better experiences with horses and mules. Got my first pony when I was five. She threw me off, then went about 100 feet and turned around and ran over me. Left a hoof print around my navel. I remember crying and begging my dad to shoot her for me. He laughed about that as long as he lived.

Zenia    Posted 11-03-2004 at 15:49:11       [Reply]  [No Email]
Well said. The little ponies are the worst. First time I was thrown was from a tiny shetland. My feet almost reached the ground. Someone else had bridled him, and I didn't know he did not have a chin strap. That little guy took his bit in his teeth and took off with me - would not stop for anything. Ran right under a pole gate. The gate knocked the wind out of me and knocked me right off that pony.

Tom 8N396936    Posted 11-03-2004 at 13:48:38       [Reply]  [No Email]
The only advice I would give is don't let lack of knowlege stop you from trying anything.
I tend to overstudy things thus never actually do them- I am breaking that habit though!
Like it was said before- keep your sense of humor and be thankful everyday for what you have been blessed with. Good Luck and ENJOY

RN    Posted 11-03-2004 at 13:46:59       [Reply]  [No Email]
First -good fences before critters. Horse or pony-can you plow and cultivate with them? If you can't work them, just big expensive pet. Cow? Need fencing and know how to milk and handle. My sister knew about cows and figured goat fitted on small acreage better, I've milked both- goat for small place handier, less disaster if gets loose. Critters cause less trouble if they have their own kind as company- get 2 little pigs instead of 1, 2 lambs instead of 1. For goat a single one will hang with human or sheep- human contact sometimes desilable for milker- gentles them, not nervous at milking. RN.

Donna from Mo    Posted 11-03-2004 at 13:37:30       [Reply]  [No Email]
One thing you won't know if nobody tells you: do NOT plan on keeping the pony and the cattle in the same pen. Most horses will run cows to death. They don't mean any harm, it's fun to them. But it can sure kill the cows.

KatG    Posted 11-03-2004 at 12:01:39       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Amen to all the above sounds like the kind of days we been having the last few...
Country living it great!!!...We have a samll...I mean small farm in comparison to what alot of these fine folks have that post here...They are life savers...By the way WHERE is Fern???
ANyway...get you a good pair of rubber boots...and learn not to be squeamish..Read and listen to everything you can about farm life...Don't expect anymore vacations if you have a milkcow...we got one...but we like staying home anyway...Who can aford to travel???
There will be days you wonder what in the hell am I doing but then you wouldn't change it for the world...Not many nights you will have trouble sleeping because you will be exhausted but it is a good feeling...
Like stated...learn to roll with the punches...and remember "This to shall pass.."
Good luck!!!
KatG on the Crippled G Farm in Arkansas

toolman    Posted 11-03-2004 at 10:56:32       [Reply]  [No Email]
most important thing is having good neighbours and being one yourself, makes doin anything alot easier.

Hold on a minute    Posted 11-03-2004 at 11:35:18       [Reply]  [No Email]
Now hear me on this, neighbors in the country are a God Send if you live in some remote area and don't get out much. Just make sure you gradually get to know them. Cities don't have a lock on mean people. So, tread carefully. Maybe if you're lucky your neighbors will be kinda like Ma and Pa kettle. ...gfp (a tried and true Percy Kilbright fan)

Bob/Ont    Posted 11-03-2004 at 11:40:54       [Reply]  [No Email]
He better be sure he has a truck load of 2X4's and a can of green paint to give them then Eh.
Later Bob

Yeah    Posted 11-03-2004 at 12:42:22       [Reply]  [No Email]
and the loan of that there wheel barrow. and a hand full of them sixteen penny nails. that aught to be about enough for now.......gfp

*    Posted 11-03-2004 at 11:00:39       [Reply]  [No Email]

steve19438    Posted 11-03-2004 at 10:54:25       [Reply]  [Send Email]
fencing and a tractor!

something to think about    Posted 11-03-2004 at 10:45:20       [Reply]  [No Email]
somethings you might give some thought to:

how far is it to where you will work a real job?

how much time will you have to work your patch of earth between working your real job?

that can be the hard surprise to country living.
more than one person here on this board has said that there isn't enough time in the day. that can happen anywhere, even smack dab in the heart of the big city. if you find that you dont have any time on your hands now, you certainly wont have any extra by moving to the boonies.

this aint saying you wont like it! just dont expect to be anything but busy.


Ron/PA    Posted 11-03-2004 at 10:30:08       [Reply]  [No Email]
PP, the last time I gave this little talk I met a group of friends that'll be friends forever.
Here's hoping it works again.
You will need a sense of humor!!!! Just about the time you are having your worst day, you'll need it.
When, the neighbor calls and says your steers are in his garden, and the sow just rolled on a pair of piglets, the dog chased a car and finally caught it, and the car won, the cat found somethin that stinks worse than a skunk, and it's raining on your hay,, you better be able to laugh, and give thanks for the rain... If you can't grin and bear it, it'll only get worse when the tractor burns up a coil, and the bailer snapped a tying needle... LOL
Learn to roll with the punches, get to know your neighbors, be a good neighbor, and give thanks daily for all that god's gonna give you.
Welcome to the country.
Who daily gives thanks for meeting, EIEIO, DENNIS, TOOLMAN, GROVE R, HOGMAN, TAMMY, DJ AND A HOST OF OTHERS, may you be so lucky.

Alias    Posted 11-03-2004 at 10:27:03       [Reply]  [No Email]
Start with perhaps a few chickens or a small pig and work into it. Don't overload yourself with caring for too many animals. There ain't no mystery to keeping animals. It's kinda like raising children. Keep em warm and dry and feed & water them on a schedule. Also, protect them from preditors. Talk gently to them and they will take to you in the same way a baby takes to it's mother. Just don't allow your affection for the creatures to run wild. The fact is, at some time you may want to use them for food......gfp

toolman    Posted 11-03-2004 at 10:12:37       [Reply]  [No Email]
hard to put it all down at one sitting ask as you go im sure someone will be glad to help, your neighbours will get you into stuff soon enough im sure , you,ll learn as you go , enjoy your new life in the country.

Clipper    Posted 11-03-2004 at 09:29:08       [Reply]  [No Email]
Make sure ya got no room for the MIL....and if ya do turn that space into a chicken coop quick!

PigletPincher    Posted 11-03-2004 at 19:20:45       [Reply]  [Send Email]
LOL @ Clipper!

Thanks you all for so many responses!
Yeah, we are not jumping into ANYTHING! Thanks especially for the info on ponies as I was going to get one for my kids!

We are going to start off with a garden (very nice garden spot), and maybe a few chickens. I'd like to develop and maintain a good compost heap for the garden.

I do have a great resource book, which of course I can't give you the title because it's packed already; but it tells how to do EVERYTHING: build a house from scratch, make a greenhouse, tan animal hides, make all probably know the's yellow and rectangular. I wish I could tell you the name of it but it's packed away. Anyway it even tells how to kill hogs - not that I plan on doing THAT, ugh!

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