Here are a couple of photos from our trip:
Our top concern was how much land we would need to find in order to start our farm. In order to truly live off the land for our livelihood following this basic model, how many acres do we need? Is it possible to do it on less than 100, or even less than 50 acres? We want to farm, but we also want to avoid the trap of accumulating massive debt and then not being able to sustain our farm later on. We have been constantly tossing around scenarios about how we can get started in the most financially responsible way.
Daniel thoughtfully told us that really, the acreage doesn't matter as much as what type of land it was. Is there diversity on the property? Woods? Water? Hills? Working with the land you find and stacking your resources and projects to match it is more important the amount. He said that just like the rabbits and chickens work together at Polyface, the layers that follow the cows, and the pigs that compost the winter cow manure, if we stack our resources so that no project or enterprise is alone and you plan things to work together you can do it on a lot less acreage than Polyface Farm does.
We left so encouraged. While there's so much to do in the next season to get us ready, we're one step closer and know better what type of land to look for, regardless of how large it is. That was a huge confidence booster for us, and we so appreciate Daniel taking the time to chat with us.