Quarter Acre Farming-

Discussion in 'Back to Basics' started by Motomom34, Jul 5, 2017.


  1. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    I was reading this article on how to farm or have a homestead on a quarter acre. I really like these articles on how to have a mini homestead, maximizing every inch of your space but I questioned this plan. Having a beef cow or milking with allotting only 250 sf is a really small area. I am from a place where cows roamed. I know cows do not require acres of land but I have never considered having a cow on such a small space. I always figured if I had 5 acres then I would have enough land to properly raise a cow.

    I think on a 1/4 acre would be good to raise rabbits, chickens and maybe a pig but I personally would stay away from larger animals. I think establishing fruit bushes and fruit or nut trees is wise rather then evergreens or fancy bushes.


    Here is the article-
    please follow link and read the rest of the article:
    How to Farm on a Quarter Acre - Survival Sullivan
     
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  2. Tully Mars

    Tully Mars Metal weldin' monkey

    I was raised on a 600 acre cattle ranch.
    I got as far as 80oz of hay a day and a 10'x10' stall for a cow and that was all I needed to read.
    This person is off his/her rocker. My chickens have more room than that! The ONLY time you want to put a steer in that small of a space is for the last 60-90 days that you are graining him out prior to butchering. I know it mentioned 100-130 sq feet for a outdoor run, but again that's insane. And what about space needed for hay storage? Hay bales take up a lot of room. PSHTF you ain't gonna be able to go to the feed store for hay or grain so you need to either be able to raise their food or barter for it from someone that does. Any way you cut it you will need WAY more space for a milk cow or a steer than the author says.
     
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  3. Tempstar

    Tempstar Praeclarum Site Supporter+

    My house sits on a quarter acre. Mel Bartholomew's "Square Foot Gardening" is a book to have in my situation. We get beans, tomatoes, peppers, and radishes from the square foot boxes and they do very well. I till two 30' rows for corn and okra, and plant melons at the back of the lot. We always seem to have a few jars left when its time to start canning again.

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00BL62GU4/?tag=survivalmonke-20
     
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  4. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    Thank you. I am glad you agree that a cow needs more room. They are large animals that need room. You would have to feed a cow hay all the time because there would be no fresh grass in an enclosure that small.
     
  5. 3M-TA3

    3M-TA3 Cold Wet Monkey Site Supporter++

    I've been a BIG fan of Mel for years and even watched his show on PBS.



    The PBS series:


    After next year's relocation I'm planning on using IBC totes based on this video that @Dunerunner posted here: Cleaning 330 gallon tote tank | Survival Monkey Forums

    I'm going to raise them a bit more to put them at the most comfortable work height.

     
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  6. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    So if you were going to raise critters, what would you do? Do you think you have the room? What about fruit trees, how many do you think you could fit?
     
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  7. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    For milk, I'd probably downsize to a goat. Bantam chickens and dwarf stock fruit trees, and a miniature poodle as an attack lap dog! ;)
     
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  8. Dunerunner

    Dunerunner Brewery Monkey Moderator

    Two or three containerized dwarf citrus would work in a home or greenhouse... thought about that when it (a greenhouse) was an option
     
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  9. DarkLight

    DarkLight Live Long and Prosper - On Hiatus Site Supporter

    Nossir...barkless Chihuahua. :D
     
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  10. Tempstar

    Tempstar Praeclarum Site Supporter+

    I tried white 5 gallon buckets, but it gets hot enough here that it kills the plants, so I wonder about IBC totes.
    We have two peach trees and a pomegranite bush.
     
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  11. tacmotusn

    tacmotusn Mosquito Sailor Site Supporter+

    From what i have read in this thread so far, i would recommend these books.
    . The have more plan
    . Ten acres enough
    . starting right with milk goats
    all available at amazon
    . I think these books will more than answer your questions about a small scale self sufficient survival farming operation.
     
  12. M118LR

    M118LR Caution: Does not play well with others.

    About those Draft Animals?
     
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  13. 3M-TA3

    3M-TA3 Cold Wet Monkey Site Supporter++

    Here is how you calculate it:
    https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/stelprdb1097070.pdf

    I've also read about people who don't raise cattle year round. They get a new calf each spring then harvest before the winter when it reaches about 600 lbs.
     
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  14. duane

    duane Monkey+++

    A 1/4 acre is roughly 100 feet by 100 feet. Take 1200 sq feet feet out for a house space, a driveway, etc and allowing some space to rotate crops, and you can raise your veggies, fire wood, no, grains, no, orchard, very limited, rabbits and chickens, limited, goats and larger animals, only if you get your feed somewhere else. It would make your long term storage food last a lot longer and make it a lot healthier, but unless you live on potatoes and root crops, etc, very limited meat or fruit, an individual would have a hard time living on that amount of space and the larger the family group, the harder it becomes. Sg foot gardening and season extenders will help, but only help out, not feed you. Have seen small farming in Asia. Barley over winter, rice in summer, transplanting after barley harvest, Several crops, as many as 5 different , raised one after another in one space in the garden, plant thick and eat all of the thinnings, plant soy beans, eat small beans like string beans, larger beans like black eyed peas, then harvest full crop of mature beans for soy based foods. They have both the labor and generations of experience surviving under those conditions..
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2017
  15. TnAndy

    TnAndy Senior Member Founding Member

    Lot of folks do exactly that, but it's a real waste, IMHO. Calf really starts to 'fill out' around a year to 18mo. The beef is far better, the steaks decent size, etc, when they hit 1000-1200lbs.

    Personally, I'd have a 30x50 hoophouse (we raise an amazing amount of our food in a 20x36), growing only potatoes/corn/black oil sunflowers outside, and possibly strawberries in outside raised beds. We average 15-18gal/yr off about 100'x2' of raised bed.

    Critters I'd limit to rabbits and chickens...you can use every dropping for your growing fertilizer, and grow much of the feed needed for them
    Everywhere else, blueberries, grapes and dwarf fruits. Virtually no lawn except clover to raise for the rabbits.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 5, 2017
  16. SB21

    SB21 Monkey+++

    It's been quite a few years since Ive had a garden. My question for you is this, does your corn do well with only 2 rows ? My last garden , my corn didn't do so well with just 2 rows about 30 feet as well. I had an old timer tell me then that you needed to plant corn with at least 4 rows so it could cross pollinate to produce to its maximum potential. Thanks.
     
  17. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    you can do it if you stick to small animals and intense/dense gardening. Rabbits and chickens are good eating. idk about goats, i think they are more trouble than they are worth.

    I had a 1/4 acre place with a small 2 bedroom home in Walla Walla, my garden was 30 x 30 and grew entough food for 2 ppl for a year. with room for crockette, flowers and a large back porch and garage...... mowing the lawn sucked. Rabbits would have been nice ;D
     
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  18. Seepalaces

    Seepalaces Monkey++ Site Supporter+

    I have two answers: the book answer and the actual answer. Technically, you don't need more than two plants to cross pollinate. Having said that, I agree with the old timer, I've never had even a decent crop without at least four rows.
     
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  19. Tempstar

    Tempstar Praeclarum Site Supporter+

    Our corn does well usually. One year we had all undeveloped ears (soil too acidic) but otherwise no problems. we average 50 plants and 100 ears, 80% of which gets canned. Okra is the real winner, with 20 plants making fruit all summer we get tried of it by summers end, and can, pickle, and freeze a bunch. If you like it, Okra is the best plant for making lots of food all summer long.
     
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  20. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

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