Not Much Usage

oregonwoodsmoke(5 OR Sunset 1A)October 16, 2010

It's a disappointment to me that the farm life forum gets so little use.

I wonder if it is because the small family farm is a dying institution. What do you guys think? Why so little interest?

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pamghatten(wny5)

For me, there's a lot of posts about chickens, which I don't have or plan to have.

Otherwise, I contribute when there is something that I can contribute to. And I've been getting ready for winter, so it's a busy season.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2010 at 5:23PM
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johanna_h(Z5 SW MI)

This forum has changed a lot. Years ago it was mostly people from working farms. They would talk about crops, and tractor repair, and milk cows, and so on. Many of them on old family farms, but definitely making their livings there, not hobby farms.

One of my favorite things was that a few of the people would post daily about whatever chores they were taking care of. It was in journal form, someone would post the first entry, then others would reply with their own descriptions of their days.

Gradually it seems to have shifted to many more hobby farmers (like me), and as you said, lots and lots about chickens. So the community has changed.

As a wise old theatrical producer used to say, "if they don't want to come, you can't stop 'em!"

Here is a link that might be useful: My place: Busy Solitude Farm

    Bookmark   October 16, 2010 at 6:28PM
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lily51(OH 5)

I was wondering the same thing, and would like a forum such as johanna described.
If anyone knows of one, let me know.

We have a grain farm, no more livestock, never had chickens. And, yes, the family farm is still there,it's just getting larger and larger, more tech than ever. There's even GPS now and a device to allow the tractor to steer itself across the field...prevents overlapping or skipped areas, even perfect application of fertilizer per acre over a 100 acre field. Times have changed, but families who farm still feel strongly about the lifestyle and family part of it, as ours does, which is a 4-generation farm.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2010 at 1:19PM
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calliope(6)

The same thing happened over on the professional gardener's forum. It used to be growers and landscapers, hardly any action now but for the last few years it seems to be people who want to start a 'backyard' nursery with questions like where can you buy flower pots wholesale. sigh.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2010 at 9:26PM
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bulldinkie(pa)

No time, but yes go for a ride in the country and see how many farms arent farming anymore.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2010 at 10:56PM
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oregonwoodsmoke(5 OR Sunset 1A)

I had to sell my farm because I couldn't take care if it any more. The small farms around me gradually turned to hobby farms with a horse or two and not much else.

The farms that did still grow hay and cattle had the wife working the farm and the husband going into town for a job with a salary that paid to support the farm.

Most of those farmers have quit trying to grow crops. There is just not enough return for the amount of work. So now, when I drive past, I will see a steer or two. Just enough livestock to keep the farm deferral and to keep the water rights.

One farmer planted all his hay fields to Christmas trees, but apparently, he doesn't know how to take care of them because they don't look at that good.

I sure miss the lifestyle. Right now, I have a small fruit orchard and that is it.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2010 at 2:41PM
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doninalaska

I moved over here when the Lehman's forum went to a blog. It used to have much more variety and many people just getting started. They had questions about how to deal with problems and difficulties that they had encountered and was centered around small "homestead-type" farms, whether they are called "hobby" farms or a step toward self-sufficiency. Many of us who are getting up in years are trying to raise as much of our own food as possible now that the food supply is so vulnerable. As someone said earlier, it was originally the day-to-day goings-on. It was interesting to read of the Texas folks having water problems and the New Englanders being buried in snow. We have our own problems here that were probably of interest to others on the forum. Much of the "atmosphere" has been lost. People sound like they are weary of the never-ending chicken issues. I would have thought that there would have been a poultry forum somewhere on the garden web for those issues to be addressed. I, like many of us,have busy times of the year when we don't have time to spend on the "web", but when we come back, there often aren't any interesting topics started. Perhaps some of us should start posting our activities on a day-by- day or week-by-week basis. The farm photos are interesting, but not all of us have the means to take and post photos.

We have to protect our hay supply and apple trees from moose, but our gardens are out for the year. The temp has been down to 8 degrees F., but no snow yet. Firewood is our main farm chore yet to do. We had a Nubian doe abort two days ago for no apparent reason. The spontaneous abortion is something we have not experienced in twenty years of raising goats, so if anyone has ideas on causes that can be investigated, please post them.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2010 at 3:57PM
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oregonwoodsmoke(5 OR Sunset 1A)

I just had a tenant move out of a country place with irrigated pasture, good fencing, room for a garden. 5-6 years ago, people would be begging for a place like that.

Now, I am not getting so much as a single phone call. People seem more interested in growing their own food, so that surprises me that there is no interest. Maybe the interest is only in growing food that doesn't involve any work?

I think it is the internet and video game generation. They grew up with no interaction with animals or any of their food. Kids used to want to grow up to be cowboys and own a horse. Now they want to grow up to be intergalactic space rangers and own a space ship.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2010 at 5:36PM
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iammarcus(6)

There may be a lot of people like me that didn't realize GW had a farm forum. I got here by signing off GW and googling farm forums. I'm not sure how to get back here tomorrow but I'll find a way now that I know you are here. I'm trying to learn how to care for my animals as I add them. In the past I've been growing fruit trees,berries and grapes. Will too much fallen fruit be bad for my goats?
Dan

    Bookmark   December 2, 2010 at 12:17AM
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velvet_sparrow(Zone 5b, Gardnerville, NV)

This reminds me of when I was in high school and people would complain about the lack of interesting articles and reported happenings in the school newspaper.

The answer to that was, 'Provide some!'

If you want to see more posts & reponses on more generalized farm stuff, post some! The chicken people are active on here because OTHER chicken people post here and have attracted others, who in turn post...

If you post it, they will come, grasshopper. :)

Velvet ~:>

    Bookmark   December 7, 2010 at 4:04AM
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brendasue(6)

I havn't been on in quite a while. Partly because we've been busy but partly because my Java gets hung up with Adobe, and when that happens I can't post to any forums! I havn't figured out the problem, so I'm stuck to just reading mostly.

It's frustrating for me when I really want to respond to a post and can't!

Brendasue

    Bookmark   December 15, 2010 at 4:29PM
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farmerboy98

Ive noticed that this thread hasnt gotten much action recently, and It saddens me. Im 12 a year old boy, turning 13 saturday, and enjoy reading through these forums. I just recently signed up so i can now post. I live near downtown chicago, so its really hard for me to pursue my dream of living on a working farm. Instead, me and my friends have a few small farm animals we keep as pets, including chickens, rabbits, and ducks. We currently only have 1 rabbit, used to have a few. We plan on getting chicks in springtime, when it gets warm enough to not have to worry so much about them. I spend my summer months at my grandfathers house in north judson, indiana where we have lots of chickens. We used to have turkeys, geese, rabbits, and a few beef cattle but not enough people living out there now to take care of it now. Well, I look forward to reading everyones responses!

    Bookmark   January 28, 2011 at 12:38AM
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