Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Welcome to the Farm!

Or, maybe I should say "farm" instead. If you walked down the sidewalk in front of our house, you'd never look at us and think, "What a lovely farm!" In fact, you wouldn't think farm at all.

We live in a rather ordinary house, in an perfectly ordinary neighborhood, in a very urban city. We like it very much. But when we bought it almost exactly a year ago, it was most definitely NOT a farm. It had been newly remodeled, and while the remodel and the landscaping is lovely, wasn't the farm I'd been dreaming of since I was small.

About a month after we moved in, I started getting seed catalogs in the mail. Sitting in our cozy new home, browsing through all those glossy pages of produce porn, I made my decision. We would build our farm here, in the middle of our suburban neighborhood.

I spent last winter filling notebooks with lists of things to plant, graph paper with measurements and calculations, and scraps of paper with sketches, notes, and plans. I have been told that I was a bit obsessive during that season. Anyone that knows me well, though, will tell you that I really love researching and planning things out (something I've been thankful for time and again as we build our farm).

We spent last spring digging into the barely thawed yard, placing beds here and there. We chose to leave all existing plants and trees through one growing season, to assess what we'd keep and what would come out to make room for more edibles.

I wanted to try raising chickens, something I'd tried twenty or so years ago with disastrous results. I did more research, drew up a plan, and we converted half of the shed in the backyard into a chicken coop. After spending the first half of the summer chasing chickens off the deck and finding poop everywhere, we added an enclosed run.

Since those early days, we've continued to add on, make changes and upgrades, and dream bigger. And, it's only our first year! So stay tuned...

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