Going back to the land is so exciting after years of city life. The view of the pond with trees swaying in the wind is so peaceful. The sounds of geese sqwaking over who knows what and roosters crowing for attention of his "girls" and turkeys gobbling at the chrome bumper on the pickup only add to the comfort of nature. No annoying toms allowed!
As part of sustainable agriculture, herbs and vegetables need fertile compost. Our choice of fertile compost-makers are heritage chickens, heritage turkeys, geese and large black hogs. After years of struggling with predators, we now have five large guard dogs to keep the varmits at bay. These are Akbash or Great Pyrenees/Anatolian mix dogs that will sit with the animals and protect them from anything that remotely might make it onto the property. We don't even lose precious vegetables to squirrels or baby chicks to hawks! (Ok, so they haven't figured out that snakes are a threat to baby chicks yet.) Let us know if you are interested in a pup for your farm.
The dream is to grow medicinal herbs and ALL sorts of edibles. Herbs are beautiful plants in very many ways. Farming is so wonderfully unpredicatble, especially the weather.
We want to be better than organic. Just eliminating the pesticides isn't enough. You can follow the organic rules and still have mass-produced, malnourished food. We consider the organic rules are a minimum standard. We do much more for the sake of our animals as well as ourselves. Our farm is trying to form the sustainable circle of life, putting back into the soil more than we take out, so that what we grow is the best nutrition possible.
The mass-produced food supply has absolutely ruined the flavor and nutrition of our sustinance by always taking from the land and never putting anything back. In one generation, we have so many people with so many chronic health problems. I blame our mass-produced barely nutritious food as the cause of many of these problems such as "fibromyalgia," all kinds of chronic fatigue syndromes and rheumatic diseases, even cancer.
I also blame our mass-produced food constisting of mostly cheap-subsidized wheat and dairy on our family's Celiac Syndrome . We feed only gluten-free food to our animals mostly because yours truly gets sick handling the feed, but also just in case some of the gluten comes through to the meat. Feeling better is so worth it all!
We have been developing our pastures to feed our animals, inching toward the goal of growing everything ourselves that we need to feed them. The birds eat whatever they can find in their pasture, supplemented with our own blend of naturally grown seed and supplements including extra flax seed for omega-3 goodness. The animals are treated like royalty and are not overfed, so they develop their true wonderful flavor. You'll never want to go back to store-bought chickens again!
Our large black hogs are wonderful heritage pigs. Great manure-makers. Grow well on pasture, and the best pork you will ever eat! Pigs are a HOOT, gentle, friendly and quite smart actually. Have you ever seen a piglet jump across a pasture like a little lamb would? Besides being the most gentle pigs you can find, Large Black Hogs make some of the best-eating fresh pork available.