I have lately thought a lot about our old farm which we sold. The price of essentials is horrific. We have a decent sized yard, but there is no way to raise animals for dairy or food in the city. Best we can hope for are some supplemental herbs, veggies if we get a greenhouse, and a couple of hens. A lot of work and infrastructure for little return.

We didn’t grow up on farms so when we decided to start an organic hobby farm with just books and the internet to guide us a few years ago we should have known we would be in for a world of hurt. This satire article basically sums up small farming without subsidy or outside investment. It’s a money pit.


You must protect and fight for each animal and plant you expect to produce for you. It’s hard work. Ultimately it is probably the reason for my husband’s slipped disc and back surgery. Planting fruitful things without the protection of a greenhouse is just about a lost cause. Bugs, birds, and wildlife will simply help themselves to the fruit of your time, sweat and dollars.

Don’t get me wrong farming is also wonderful and very personal and emotional. Though we lost a lot, those experiences and even heartbreak and eventual demoralization and despair taught and shaped us irrevocably.

We left farming behind for a simpler life in the city, or so we thought. The alarm of food security Is now sounding and it’s with dread that I entertain thoughts of backyard chickens again.

When we got our first batch of baby chicks and goslings from the local feed store we were very emotionally invested in these little beings and happily watched them grow in a hay stuffed kiddie pool in the house with a heat lamp and pet fence while we drew and built our first chicken coop. When they were old enough we put them out in their coop with the entire 10 acres to explore. But with no rooster we soon found we had to bring the silly things back from random hiding places in the yard they decided to sleep at. So we got a red rooster on Craigslist to do that job. He turned out to be a cruel little demon that loved stalking and attacking us even if we were far away minding our own business. It wasn’t long before the local wildlife figured out we had chickens and began picking them off slowly but surely. I confess we didn’t mourn demon rooster when his turn came. We had cows, dairy goats, mini pigs, and a donkey-all with their own personalities and lessons for us to learn.

Growing plants was more annoying though. I never knew those cute little roley polies I played with as a kid are actually a plague on potatoes. Or that wasps love pears. And those cute gophers can dig up acres of land destroying plants in a very short time and make it dangerous to humans and large animals as the tunnels might collapse and break an ankle.

But there was just something so lovely and natural about caring for and living among the plants and animals. If we had unlimited resources perhaps we would not have given it up.

The garden of Eden was perfection. We don’t have acres of land anymore or unlimited resources at our disposal, so we must learn from our past experiences and “fool taxes” we have paid as we contemplate doing it all over again on a small scale in the city as times get tougher each week. We know that it will change our lives again. And perhaps our old way of life is passing away.

Design, infrastructure, quality stock, quality foods, and automation in that order will yield success.

A recurring theme in this claymation about Mark Twain is remembering his dead wife and likening their time together to the garden of Eden. Unrelated but an interesting find if you’ve never watched it.

0 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All