Planning for the short-term– BOOTSTRAP AT FURROW HORSE FARM

By Caitlin Arnold, Furrow Horse Farm  Before I dive into this post, the farm has a big announcement: We now have our first team of draft horses! Lady and Abby, two Belgian mares from Sandpoint, Idaho, were delivered to us a few weeks ago. So far they are doing great, and we have already used them in the garden to harrow in our cover crop. We are so excited to finally have them here and realize our dream of owning our own team. Now we can truly start... Read More

Death happens (and other facts about being a farmer) – BOOTSTRAP AT EMADI ACRES

By Derek Emadi, Emadi Acres We asked each of our Bootstrap Bloggers to tell us the top five things people should know about farming. This is Derek’s list: 1) Love thy organic matter Simply put, always accumulate organic matter. If you farm, whether it’s mulch, hay, manure, leaves, topsoil, cardboard, etc, take what’s free. People are always getting rid of wonderful organic matter. It’s a great resource that is often overlooked or... Read More

The Best and The Worst: Bootstrap at Furrow Horse Farm

By Caitlin Arnold, Furrow Horse Farm  Being a farmer comes with ups and downs to the extreme. Every day we simply hope to wake up prepared for any and all situations and well rested enough to deal with what comes. Sometimes, what comes is disaster. The story of one of the worst days on the farm this season comes from Brandon: A few weeks ago we had an epic windstorm. Caitlin was away for the weekend, and I was all set for our Saturday market. I... Read More

Weddings and chickens: A farm business plan – Bootstrap at Emadi Acres Farm

By Derek Emadi, Emadi Acres The beauty of farming is that there are many avenues to make money, though you have to work extremely hard to get it. I have a silly dream of having all of my business commerce happen here on the farm. Not that I am necessarily a hermit, I just never like leaving my property because it’s where I always want to be. That dream is many years off, so for now I go where the money is. In my first year of farming, I tested... Read More

A new generation and permanent protection for Wingate Farm

Friends and supporters of local farming gathered earlier this month in Hinsdale, New Hampshire to celebrate the permanent protection of Wingate Farm. Wingate Farm’s new owners are Olivia Pettengill and her brother James. In their second season growing, Olivia and her business partner, Susan Parke-Sutherland, raised 700 pastured laying hens, hundreds of broiler chickens, eight forest-raised pigs, and a variety of vegetables and flowers. Until recently... Read More

The numbers game – Bootstrap at Furrow Horse Farm

By Caitlin Arnold, Furrow Horse Farm  Brandon and I started Furrow Horse Farm this year not entirely sure where it would take us, or where we would take it. We are farming on leased land, and signed a one-year lease to start out with. It is difficult to plan long-term for the farm and business when we don’t know how long we will be on this land or even how long we want to be on this land. We also both have off-farm jobs to help pay the bills, so... Read More

Getting by with a little help from your friends … Plus savings and grants

By Derek Emadi, Emadi Acres So many stories about farming in the media feature people who left their well-paying jobs in corporate America to start a farm business. The stories always include the folks admitting how difficult their type of farming is, but conclude with how prosperous they have become in their venture. If you to want to be a farmer and are fortunate enough to have a large bank account, I can imagine things being a lot easier. The... Read More

My Grandpa and the New Family Farm – BOOTSTRAP AT FURROW HORSE FARM

By Caitlin Arnold, Furrow Horse Farm  On February 13th of this year, I came home from work and played the new messages on our answering machine. My mom’s voice came across the line crying and hysterical, informing me that my grandpa had died that afternoon. My grandpa, Richard Norton, grew up farming cherries and apples in the Yakima Valley of eastern Washington State. He witnessed the transition from draft horses to tractors and the arrival... Read More

“Nature boy” finds his calling – BOOTSTRAP AT EMADI ACRES FARM

By Derek Emadi, Emadi Acres As far back as I can remember, one of the only places I felt peace as a hyperactive kid was on my grandparent’s property. Their land was located in a small town west of San Antonio, Texas. The town was small enough that my cousins, brother, and I could walk unescorted to various shops to browse their candy selections. We had so much freedom when we were there. Freedom from school, television, and parents! My impatient... Read More

Bootstrap at Furrow Horse Farm – Meet Caitlin

  Welcome to our 2015 Bootstrap Blog series! We’ve been introducing you to our four Bootstrap Bloggers, who are all in their first or second year of running a farm. Throughout the season, each Bootstrap Blogger will write about the highs and lows, glory moments and curveballs that come with farming.   My name is Caitlin Arnold, and I am a young farmer in Washington State. This year I’m celebrating my tenth year of farming and my first... Read More

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