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Feb 28

Suburban Farming: Eco-friendly Tips and Tricks

 

The life of a suburban homesteader can become a lot more exciting if he/she has some area of land available to be used for farming. Remember, I am not talking about the backyard garden which can just serve your homestead’s planting needs. I am talking about a comparatively bigger area that can be used for proper farming. While the idea is a bit vague, to have enough area in a suburban setup but recently many such small farms with an area size as small as one acre are showingup on the suburban landscape. When one thinks of farming, it naturally leads to our perception of tiresome work, planting, harvesting along with all that is to know about farming. Sounds, tough right? What most people don’t know is: suburban farming with some smart hacks and essential equipment is not as tough as you think. Also you would be serving your role as ‘go-green’ initiator.

Let’s get started with a bit of digging, to substantially provide us with produce for SHTF times or for profit as you sell your local farm harvest at a store.

Fertilizing the soil:

Coffee beans, egg shells, banana peels are a homestead farmer’s gold, for they can be reused as a natural nutrient rich fertilizer for your soil. Egg shells stored in a coffee container, crush these eggshells and then sprinkle it on the soil of your plants. The crushed egg shells will provide calcium to the soil as it decomposes and can also protect your plants from slugs.

Coffee beans and grounds can work as nitrogen rich compost for your farm. You can utilize brewed grounds and add them to your soil to make natural compost. You can just add a layer of coffee grounds on top of the soil to win the battle against slugs.

Animal manure has all that you need for your soil and who knows this better than a homesteader. Oh, and one thing you might not have known is that sheep dung is more beneficial than cow or pig dung and if your soil is dry chicken dung can provide it the desired amount of nitrogen and can also provide moisture to your soil.

Remember you are not to use any synthetic fertilizers that would not only chip away at the eco-friendly initiative on your part but also deteriorate the quality of the soil.

Battle with the pests:

When you want to plant broccoli with radishes, you can use this handy hack to plant the two together and not waste anything at all. Also, when your radishes grow to a point they tower over your broccoli protecting it from cabbage worms/moths, as they will only stay upon your radish plants. It’s as easy as that, no rocket science involved while you keep those pesky worms and moths away from destroying your broccoli.

To hush the slugs away, you can actually use some copper pennies. Yes, you heard me right. Copper pennies around the base of your beans kept at about 6-8 inches away from plants can work as a slug repellant.

Aphids feeding upon your tomatoes and heirloom vegetables are just a nuisance when you want your vegetables to be grown all organically. What you can do to fight these is make a mixture of mint oil and water and spray onto the aphids. This works without you having to worry about the yuck-factor and is a 100% organic solution.

As you can see, battling pests can be as environmental friendly as ever. You’ve just got to get your creativity flowing and decide from within that protecting the environment for yourself and the future generations is your responsibility too.  What you sow, so shall you reap.

Equipment you’ll need:

Even for a small hobby farm or a local business farm some tools and equipment are essential to make your work steady and your farm always functional. Here are a few things you’ll need to get things done:

Although most people prefer to go for walk behind equipment for a small suburban farm but think about it this way, you obviously need a tractor-esque vehicle, be it two wheeled or four wheeled, right? So why not have an actual vehicle that can serve for as a multi-purpose. A small tractor that can pull your stumps, skid some logs, plow, harrow and seed some part of your land is a better choice than those walk behind two wheelers. A tractor if properly maintained and repaired regularly, is an innocent soul and can save lives and property that usually result from the use of such field equipment. So you don’t need a too many tools or tire yourself by doing everything in your farm. Also you could power your tractor with alternate renewable forms of fuel and ‘go green’.

Other tools which can keep your farm up and running includes:

  1. Buckets
  2. Pocket knives
  3. Baling Twine
  4. Wheel barrow
  5. Shovel

While there a myriad of other things you’ll obviously need but these few basic tips can help you in the long run when your farm has is blooming with veggies and fruits. Happy farming!

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