Category: Commercial Farm Projects

Start Growing! Part 4: Have You Considered SPIN Farming?

In previous parts of the Start Growing! series, we’ve talked about how to buy a farm debt-free, even without money, and how we should value our time if we’re going to be financially sustainable. Did you know that’s what SPIN Farming is about? When I first heard of it I falsely assumed it was something like square-foot gardening with a twist. Nope. Not even close.

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TERA (Tracked Earth Repair Apparatus) For Large Scale Earth Repair

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“Mechanized labour” in the form of earthmoving equipment, tractors, and the myriad attachments that may be utilized in conjunction with their use provide us with an amazing opportunity to perform a great deal of beneficial work. They help in rapidly establishing efforts to reverse land degradation and desertification on a grand scale. It’s an immense job requiring considerable work input. Given the urgent importance of undertaking this activity, finding the […]

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How the Whole Volunteers Thing Works

Where and how to get free labor, what to expect from volunteers, and why it’s totally worth it. A table full of happy volunteers It was less than a year ago that my wife Emma and I set out on journey through Central and South America, our plan being to volunteer on farms the whole way. We’d toyed with gardening here and there, spent some time running the hotel side […]

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Project Establishment, Eagles Deep (Victoria, Australia)

I was contacted back in October last year for an initial consult, on pre-property purchase in Tatong, Victoria, Australia. Since then the project has come along in leaps and bounds. Below is a photolog of the events, trials and tribulations of the project this far. My first job after purchase was to secure the dam and install what will become a secondary spillway, but for now it’s the primary spillway […]

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Vertical Farming: Singapore’s Solution to Feed the Local Urban Population

Sky Greens’ vertical farm Introduction The wealthy island city of Singapore with an area of 710 square km and a population of 5 million, is one of the most densely populated cities in the world. With most parts of the island’s land utilized for urban development, the remaining 250 acres of farmland is hardly sufficient to feed the growing population. As a consequence, more than 90 percent of Singapore’s food […]

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Tips and Insights from Miracle Farms (Canada)

Recently Michelle, Rowan, Naomi and I embarked on a cross-country train trip to attend a family reunion in the eastern townships of Quebec. With a little extra time left over after the festivities, I decided to connect with Stefan Sobkowiak of Miracle Farms for a day, having come across Stefan’s work in the amazing YouTube video above. Over the course of the day, I gleaned some great ideas and tips […]

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Advice to Farmers About Interns/Wwoofers

There are thousands of people willing to work on organic/permaculture farms for free or nearly free. Many farmers have explored this path and found it too frustrating and subsequently elected to no longer do this. Here are two well known farmers, Doug Bullock and Jacqueline Freeman, who have had great success and this is their advice to farmers considering this path. The Bullock Brothers Permaculture Homestead at Orcas Island, Washington, […]

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Soil Carbon Cowboys – Case Studies in Holistic Management (video)

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Meet Allen Williams, Gabe Brown and Neil Dennis — heroes and innovators! These ranchers now know how to regenerate their soils while making their animals healthier and their operations more profitable. They are turning on their soils, enabling rainwater to sink into the earth, rather than run off. And these turned on soils retain that water, so the ranches are much more resilient in drought. It’s an amazing story that […]

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Bambra Agroforestry Farm (Victoria, Australia)

Last week I had the chance to visit the Bambra Agroforestry Farm and see a great example of tree growing for timber production in action. Rowan Reid, the owner and driving force behind the farm, has been planting a whole selection of different tree species on site for over 25 years — as shelter for stock animals that graze below the trees, to repair degraded land, for conservation purposes and […]

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Gamping – Another Yield From Your Garden

Living off your land can be quite challenging. It seems that a ‘secret’ taught by permaculture is multi-cropping — stacking, successive planting, optimizing the planting space, trading, many functions per element, etc. Now, some permaculturists are gifted at finding ways to increase their yields, while some others still struggle to get a fair price for their crops and products. I suggest using your land, your time and your brain to […]

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Taranaki Farm Chicken System (Victoria, Australia)

Taranaki Farm is truly a wonderful place to witness. The farm focuses on producing pastured poultry, beef and pork, with laying hens moved onto new pasture every few days. It is a great combination of high tech and old-world, using electric fencing to keep the animals on fresh grass. This style of animal management helps to keep the animals parasite free, eliminates the problems of over-grazing and gives the pastures […]

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