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Tips with pictures for organic gardening and little organic farms. For the purpose of this presentation, I define garden as a peace of land from a quarter hectare up to about 1 hectare and little farm from 1-3 hectares, rarely larger. The larger your farm the more complex your work and the less quality of life you can achieve as farmer family. A small organic farm needs creative ideas to be fun and provide healthy organic food besides being a natural living environment and adventurous playground for happy children. Hence little farms need to look like organic gardens - just larger. Farming should be conducted like gardening, with love and health rather than with profits in mind. This growing tips section with pictures from various little organic farms in the Philippines and the Kingdom of Cambodia can in no way be all inclusive in teaching you organic gardening skills or organic farming skills. The purpose of these tips however is to open and broaden your mind, to show you a variety of different gardening methods or farming techniques used in both tropical countries as well as to add additional tips from my own experience as a farmer son in a totally different climate and environment in the Swiss mountains.
CONTENT Beautiful small farmhouse amidst nature Choosing a farm location Choosing a farmhouse location Organic farming is like gardening - just larger Animal farming or vegetarian farming Vegetarian farming allows full use of nature Integrate your garden into nature Be creative and innovative in your gardening skills Success in organic farming Organic gardening needs love for nature Add natural beauty to your farm Allow nature on your organic farm to create balance Using animals on farming adds work and expenses A smallest possible farm How to choose your house location on your property Learn to live with nature instead of fighting nature Learn to make the best out of your farmland Know what you love to farm and choose a land suitable for your needs Keep your small farmhouse clean amidst beautiful wilderness The direct proximity of your house is needed for your nursery Define your favorite farming type Learn to use existing farmland features for your benefit There is no poor soil but only poor understanding of the soil you have Never try to enforce a type of farming in a wrong place Create diversity in your farm just like jungle
Jungle and wilderness is strong because of diversity Learn about origin of fruits and plants you plant Avoid to copy other farmers and try to be different If you love and care for nature - nature loves you back Learn the value of nature before attempting to replace nature Revenue sources for farming The first goal of every farm is self sustainability Offer guest rooms on your farm Add nature beauty for your guests Philippines farm house Kitchen house on Philippine farm How to convert grass land into garden Dig deep and add bio waste for mulching Mulching as bio fertilizer in your garden Peanut plants grow in heavy poor soil Adventure vacation for children on a farm Children may add to family resources while having fun Profitability of farming - Learn calculation basics for your farm Profitability in farming is a need for progress A business or farm may be fully flourishing and yet produce a loss Calculate profitability of your farm - introduction of definitions Fixed overhead expenses in farming Flexible or variable overhead expenses in farming Total operational cost of production in farming Profitability of animal farming - work and time Learn to calculate your own cattle or animal profitability
Spiritual aspects of animal farming Retail price markup and profits Profit margin in farming, business retail or wholesale Without profit there is no progress Traditional farming methods vs modern high tech farms The purpose of honest profits in farming Balance between organic farming, high tech farm and stone age methods Purpose of farming is self sustainability for family needs How much self sustainability is reasonable Diversity of food produced depends on the choice or your land Grow what loves your soil most at every corner of your property Uniqueness of your farming as an inspiration for your community Self sustainability in farming as a powerful environment protection Complement your plantation with suitable plants or trees Insects and bugs are God's helpers The damage of pesticide, herbicide and fungicide on our entire nature How to find suitable plants or trees The water purity is vital for all life Reasonable self-sustainability vs full self sustainability in farming Full self-sustainability in life and farming is impossible Combine beauty with usefulness in your garden and farm Less roads and limited transportation for a self sustaining farm life Biodiversity as key to success in organic farms Diversification of farm revenues to increase profitability Add beauty and diversity to your farm Nature beauty is delicious
Lifestyle of the future - all are part time farmers The multitude of many small things add up to true quality of life
Beautiful small farmhouse amidst nature A little farm should be a size that you still can manage as a family farm while having another part time job and quality time for your own family and loved ones! The ideal farmer's work situation is a mixed job - part farming, part professional work. Ideally you work at home on the farm amidst nature and loving family. The goal is to teach and inspire you to work at home joint venture with your entire family. With your children learning from you while watching you and assisting you while you are working amidst your garden of flowers, fruits, vegetables and some God made wild nature nearby is the goal of this farming tips picture series. The ideal farm size may be in the range of 3 hectares for a small farm with mixed job farmers. Up to 3 hectares can easily be managed in organic farming by a single family in a part time job in addition to some part time work for the outside world.
Choosing a farm location Several criteria to chose a location for your little farm. All make sense and are obvious. Yet if tempted with cheap offers when looking to purchase your farmland, you may easily overlook some important criteria and have to pay a life long for mistakes made in your initial choice. Create a brief checklist for all important factors., Even better, invite an old farmer to join you when looking at prospective farms or farmland. The most important in a farm is water. A farm needs running water. That means water flowing by gravity rather than by pumps. Hence you chose a location that has a small creak originating on your property or flowing through your land. Clean water of drinking quality of course. A garden or vegetable field needs pure drinking water quality irrigation else you have polluted vegetables and fruits. You also need your own well with drinking water for your household. Hence you have to chose a location on the lower side of a hill with a natural flow of underground water wells to find and dig for your needs of fresh year round water supply. The best season to chose a farm location for its available water of course is by the end of a dry season. During rainy season we have water everywhere. The important however is to have water after a long dry season. A garden or farm land without pure water has no value. Zero! If you need to pump water my motorized water pumps, you'll have life long additional mechanical work and financial expenses for your water supply. There is ample water in nature. You just have to search and find the right location to have water for household and farmland. To rebuild missing or destroyed nature is impossible within a single generation. Hence chose a location with old strong nature surrounding your farm house and protect God made nature when constructing your own home. No money and no profits ever can substitute a clean natural environment. Wild nature keeps you and your family healthy, happy and strong!
Choosing a farmhouse location A house needs sunshine all day long, flowing drinking water from your own source and a beautiful wild nature around your farmhouse to provide you with strong life-force and natural beauty for increased quality of life. A house needs flowers, wild trees, wild herbs and plants and blooming trees or shrubs to make life pleasant. Hence if you construct your house - look at some of the pictures shown and see how a farm house can be integrated into nature without any nature destruction. A house always should be smaller than all surrounding trees, integrating and adapting into nature rather than imposed onto nature. between your own house and the neighbor property should be an area of beautiful nature - a piece of wild forest or jungle. That gives you and your neighbors privacy and keeps playing children away from possible streets or other outside dangers. Being invisible to nature assures that you stay within your limits and avoid to create visual pollution for your neighbors. Whatever you do on your farm and in your home should stay within your own boundaries. That assures that all your neighbors have the freedom to create their own life and living environment without any impact or disturbance from you. Keep your noises inside your property as well as all your pollution, smoke, animals and all else. Honor other people's freedom to be without any influence from you or others. Each family should have a small clean property of its own. A small "kingdom" free from outside influences of any kind.
Organic farming is like gardening - just larger The goal of this gardening and farming articles is to turn your little farm into a large garden with lots of mixed culture, lots of beautiful flowers amidst all vegetables and fruits. Learn to create wilderness - a chaotic looking peace of nature with built in self healing. A garden is a source of life force and beauty. Each farm should look like an extended garden - a beautiful mixture of colorful flowers and edible food amidst and surrounded / protected wild nature. A key source of inspiration for organic farming is wild nature, specially jungle. Jungle is a healthy, strong chaotic looking God made organized botanical/biological structure in full harmony. Neither needing fertilizer nor needing any chemicals such as herbicides, pesticide or fungicides! Learn from God made nature for the holistic well being of all mankind including your very own family and children. Every farm starts with a small nursery in your garden to produce seedlings.
Animal farming or vegetarian farming This question is an important question to answer by you. The decision you make may have an essential impact for your entire life, the quality of life for your entire family and the overall burden of workload waiting for you. Myself I grew up on a small farm with many animals. My parents loved to eat meat and to produce meat for our society. It was impossible to convince my parents to become vegetarian farmers. Later on much more on this decision you make when choosing the type of farming or gardening with or without animals. In brief a simple and yet absolute rule: If you keep animals as prisoners of your farm, you become prisoner of your animals as well. Any kind of animal farming always leads to a 24/7/365 duty of personal physical presence - all life long. No weekend off, no vacation, no night away from home.
Vegetarian farming allows full use of nature God made a fertile nature for your benefit. Vegetarian farming or gardening allows you to harvest from wild forest, jungle or wild grass fields. You just need to learn to know all edible wild herbs, salads or vegetables to supplement your own gardening products. Learn to know nature and use wild nature as a God made extended garden. Herbs, flowers, salads and many other most precious food sources are growing in wild nature. Learn from indigenous population and old farmers about the value of wilderness as a food resource.
Integrate your garden into nature Many small garden pieces add up to large production. Garden plants surrounded by wild nature. Just look at the strength of vegetation of jungle. Jungle and wild grassland normally has a much stronger vegetation than most gardens or farm fields. God made chaotic looking divine and perfect harmony within nature makes it possible. Learn from jungle and integrate your plants into nature. Make use of empty space in nature for your gardening of seedlings or vegetables. Avoid large monoculture fields. A beautiful example is this tiny field may be 1.5x1.5 meters will produce about 50 pieces of salads or vegetable plants. Fully surrounded by nature. Nature leaves many small open areas waiting for you to add beauty or additional plants for your food needs.
Be creative and innovative in your gardening skills Use new gardening techniques for more pleasant working conditions. If soil too wet or otherwise unfit for a particular plant. Create a natural space to accommodate your vegetables or herbs. Here a suspended small herbal garden - a typical system used frequently in Cambodia. Also useful as a plant nursery. Elevated plants means less backache during your repeated daily care for youngest seedlings. Elevated nursery also may keep snails and other ground bound animals away from eating up your small seedlings.
Success in organic farming Mixed culture is the key to organic farm success. On the picture here in one field we have rice almost ready to harvest and beautiful high sweet potato. Mixed culture enforces each other, just as in jungle. The entire farm field is surrounded by wild grass, plants and strong trees to further strengthen the entire biosphere.
Organic gardening needs love for nature Wild flowers and butterflies as proof of healthy nature in your garden. Wild herbs and flowers amidst your garden are like healing herbs for your garden, keeping your entire garden beautiful and strong without any chemicals nor fertilizer.
Add natural beauty to your farm Farming means gardening in God's nature - just larger. God's nature is made to be beautiful and pleasant to enjoy as living space. Your farmland should be like a huge garden, a combination of beautiful flowers, blooming shrubs or trees, fruits and vegetables combined with beautiful waters. Instead of storing water in containers for additional irrigation during dry season, create ponds amidst your farm land and convert your ponds into beautiful nature gems.
Allow nature on your organic farm to create balance When you plant your crop in garden or farm land, you create imbalance in nature. Then after planting your crop it is necessary to allow nature to re-establish balance. Allow all plants to grow around your vegetables, trees and crop. If you choose all your plants properly, then all will learn to coexist and enforce each other like in jungle. Testing, experimenting and adapting to nature's needs will help you to have a beautiful and strong biosphere on your organic farm. A copy of wild nature and jungle adapted for farming in harmony with God's creation. Every herb or grass has a purpose and meaning in God's entire creation. Every herb or plant has healing power for humans, animals and all nature. The more diversified your vegetation in your garden or farmland, the stronger nature.
Using animals on farming adds work and expenses Animals need additional food and thus additional land and care in a busy farmer's world. Every convenience has a price. Hence think twice if you really need help by animals on your farm. Healthy animals need additional living space in freedom, healthy food and daily care. However to use machines instead is no bio-friendly solution. Technology adds much more to environment pollution and expenses to your life than any natural solution would do. If you find no alternative at all, then consider a coop where multiple farmers share tools and resources. To be happy with all your family, all possible animals you want to keep on your farm need to be happy as well. Only animals in God given freedom can be happy. No lace, no chain, no stable to restrict freedom!
A smallest possible farm This little farm belongs to an old man in Cambodia. One small house hidden under the green wine covering his roof amidst a little garden of approximately 0.1 hectare. Enough to supply all life's needs for a most simple life of a single person. The last 2 years I visited this old man every few months. Each visit the farm land looks different, new vegetable, new crop ready to harvest. All farming work done by hand without any machinery nor helper. Each time I see the old farmer he seems happy and is smiling.
How to choose your house location on your property A farm house needs to be your home during drought and flooded seasons alike. Choosing your house location has many aspects to consider for all eventualities and seasons. As said earlier you need a location that offers you free flowing water even late dry season. The opposite is to offer clean drinking water during flooded times later in rainy season. Test availability of water during both extremes of the year. Consider extreme years of exceptional drought or exceptional heavy rainy seasons during the past many centuries. In an area such as most of Cambodia where thousands of square kilometers are regularly flooded each year. many farmers have chosen a location with a self-made small elevated hill for the house. Maybe one meter above the direct surrounding land. That keeps the direct vicinity of your house dry for much of the rainy season and may make living easier. However all Khmer style houses are built on stilts - usually some 2-3 meters high rarely less - and most people have a small family row boat to fully adapt to the annual flooding of the land. Flooding thus no longer is a disaster but a normal state of nature and people are fully adapted to welcome the heavy rain blessing each year for their benefit rather than to regard it as a disaster. Lots of flooded areas means lots of potential fish breathing waters to produce highly valuable aquatic life as a food resource.
Learn to live with nature instead of fighting nature If your territory is underwater, then learn to live afloat rather than fighting water. If you learn to adapt to nature, then nature becomes your supporter, source of food and livelihood and your best friend. The question of being victim of nature or beneficiary of nature is but a matter of learning about nature and integrating yourself into nature. Some people love it dry, others wet or afloat. Some love to live along ocean coast while others may prefer hills, mountains, jungle or simply country side. There is enough space for all, for each and every taste. Every particular situation has its beautiful side, you just need to see it and learn to live with it rather than fighting nature or attempting to convert nature to fit into your selfish desires and goals.
Learn to make the best out of your farmland Instead of changing your farmland to match your needs, learn to use existing land conditions for the greatest benefits. While such wet of flooded areas may be unfit for most vegetables or fruits, these very conditions are ideal for lotus farming, aquaculture and growing aquatic weeds during each rainy season and for rice farming during lesser flooded season of the year. Know what you truly love to do and know to do. The choose your location according to your own expertise and preferences. Avoid raping your heart and soul to live in an area you dislike nor rape nature to fit into your plans. There is an ideal place that matches all your preferences. be ready to learn and open your mind for new alternate methods of modern organic farming in full harmony with nature for our all benefit.
Know what you love to farm and choose a land suitable for your needs Before choosing land for your garden or farm, you need to know what you want to grow. Know what quality of soil your favorite plants or trees need. What water or irrigation you need. What sunshine and cloud hours your farmland needs to offer ideal climate and weather conditions for your planned farming type. Know the quality of soil you have on prospective land you look at. Know the soil, how it looks, feels, smells. Know what variety of plants of trees can fit or adapt comfortably in available soil condition. Do you know a large variety of different plants, vegetables, flowers and fruits that grow strongly in exactly these given conditions you have? Organic farming requires knowledge of nature and natural energy. Organic farming requires skills to live with existing conditions without the need of artificial fertilizer or chemicals. To successfully live from organic farming you need to be able to plant and grow in harmony with existing natural conditions and use the existing nature strength to produce powerful healthy agriculture products, food and other agriculture resources offered and supported by existing nature.
Keep your small farmhouse clean amidst beautiful wilderness Preserve and protect all nature when building a house. Most of the shrubs and trees here need many years or decades to grow to existing beautiful size and strength. Your existing strong nature around your house is the most essential source of healthy life-force and healthcare for you and the entire family. Preserving all nature as is when integrating your small house into existing nature may eventually save you thousands of dollars in medical bills later on in life. Wild, healthy nature is priceless in value to quality of life and health of your entire family. While preserving existing nature, keep your house clean and neat - this is your living and working area as well as the playground for all your family. Make your home a place all love to stay and enjoy to stay. To enhance beauty, add more flowers, blossoming trees and shrubs amidst existing natural vegetation.
The direct proximity of your house is needed for your nursery Small plants and tree seedlings are like children - needing protection and daily loving care. Small seedlings may need multiple times a day irrigation, supervision, protection from animals you or your neighbors may have. Thus you may prefer to have your entire nursery close to your house. Even children may love to care for your nursery and first learn under your direct supervision, then accept responsibility for their own small nursery. Young plants are like our baby angels - they feel most comfortable amidst strong protecting surrounding. Hence you integrate your nursery into a neighborhood of strong old plants and trees. Yet small plants need their very own little space just as our own babies and children do! If you know how to care for many babies and children with loving care and without grand mother or baby sitter, then you also have the loving care for a successful nursery. In farming the owners always to all the work, without outside help, without farm helper or farm slaves. Farming only is suitable for people willing to work hard and willing to learn to do all on their own. Farming is one of the most ideal family business types offering near infinite number of choices and varieties of work for all family members to be creative and free in their work.
Define your favorite farming type Depending on your preferences you have particular farmland needs to fulfill when choosing your land and location. Hence you first have to know what type of farming you love to do. Love! Whatever type of farming you do, you really need to love that type of farm work else your life as a farmer turns into lifetime imprisonment or lifetime punishment rather than into a life of joy and happiness amidst a beautiful nature! The basic choices we had earlier: Animals or vegetarian. While my parents strictly were animal farmers with cows, horses, ponies, sheep, goats, rabbits, pork, poultry, fish and much more. We also had a large number of fruit trees, berries, corn, potato and a large variety of vegetable and salads. Most for our own farm use to feed our animals. Some for sale and the rest for human consumption. For the reasons mentioned earlier, I learned clearly that animal farming turns a farmer into a slave and even worst, you make no real profits when looking at all the additional expenses and work needed. My favorite farming style clearly is organic vegetarian farming combined with natural use of all already existing natural resources of forest, jungle and wild grass land. So most of the now following chapters on organic farming will focus on vegetarian farming. There are thousands and more types of vegetables, fruits, berries, etc that are available. Hence you need to know where your interests are, where your expertise is and even more importantly what you as an entire family love and enjoy to do. Based on these family preferences and love for a particular type of farming, you need to select your farmland, farm location, province or climate. Once you have your village or location selected, you need to find the precise piece of land that offers the soil you need for your type of farming! Or if you have a wide interest and wide field of what you love to do and enjoy to learn and do, you may see the full potential of an available or already given piece of land and know how to use this land for your plant selection and trees. A few example to show you what I mean in the following chapter.
Learn to use existing farmland features for your benefit There are plants and vegetables that love a particular condition or type of the following soil, sun and water conditions: - wet or flooded land - like for rice farming - plain sunshine vs partial shadow vs full shadow - heavy soil - mostly dry soil - rich soil - stony, sandy or gravel soil - salty air or the opposite - far from ocean nearby - salty water near ocean - or strictly no salty water as ground water - year round regular irrigation or rain vs dry season interchanging with rainy season - year round moderate tropical or subtropical climate vs hot summer / cold winter seasons. Remember most of my writing is about tropical, yet we still have zones with "cold" winter below 20 degrees Centigrade in night time vs zones with always 25 degrees Centigrade or more even in coldest nights during winter. - sunny side of a hill or mountain vs shadow side - flat land vs hills - natural forest or jungle on property - altitude above sea level - even near equator you may have freezing temperature at altitudes above approximately 2000 meters a.s.l. Any existing a.m. natural condition is suitable for farming as long as you know what type of vegetation loves that particular environment and soil quality or soil condition.
There is no poor soil but only poor understanding of the soil you have There are numbers of trees and plants that love what you call poor soil. Soil with limited of no water. Dusty, rocky, stony or sandy - even near beach with salty air or salty ground water ... God made something that loves exactly that type of conditions. Look at the image and the surrounding soil. Dry and "poor" soil but exactly the perfect condition for rich dragon fruit farming farming. Many other fruits love same or similar conditions. Such as papaya tree with a rich harvest as little as 9 months after planting a seed, or watermelon plants - a juicy fruit growing in very dry soil, even near ocean. Many most precious herbs such as thyme, marjoram, origano, sage and countless other most precious herbs for herbal tea, herbal medicine or seasoning of high class cuisine love dry sandy or rocky conditions with little soil and little water year round. You see, there is no such thing as poor soil, just poor knowledge about all possibilities your soil offers you. Never copy what millions do already, be different and learn to understand the very special treasure God gave you with the land you own. There may be herbs you only harvest a few kgs every now and then, but at a price 100 times higher than cabbage, tomato or potato because you may have something needed in milligrams or drops instead of kilograms. Despite the "poor soil" the dragon fruit bear fruits as soon as 8 months after planting a new seedling and then keep bearing fruits all year long. That sounds quite rich to me specially when looking at the local price of half dollar to one dollar a single fruit.
Never try to enforce a type of farming in a wrong place Imposing a fish pond into a dry region gives you lots of additional work. Th every same farmer having the beautiful dragon fruit farm far from nearest city, near jungle and slightly elevated above all flooded areas has an artificial fish pond. That requires daily feeding and all the problems that accompany artificial farming in an unnatural environment. There are many common sense criteria that should prevent such a fish pond in an otherwise rather dry region. First of all: That farm is some 50 kms away from nearest smaller city = your potential customers. Fish need to be transported either cooled or alive. Growing fish far from customers artificially inflates prices and make fish farming uncompetitive. In addition the daily feeding makes the fish artificially expensive until a fish reaches market size of 150-200 grams that very fish may eat up most of its selling price inn food. There are thousands of square kilometers of naturally flooded rice fields all across Cambodia. Hence to introduce fish farming into existing flooded rice fields might be a far more elegant choice. Farm fish such as Tilapia grow in a single rainy season to marketing size of approximately 150 grms. Tilapia feeds on any kind of food including plants, insects etc. Such a natural potential of fish farming within existing flooded areas may require zero feeding and zero additional work or cost at all. Be mentally flexible - search for solutions to be applied into natural conditions rather than creating artificial farming methods. The more natural your entire farming, the more cost efficient and the less care you need to become productive and successful as a farmer. Nature offers you a treasure - recognize that gift of love from God and convert this gift into a blessing for your customers, neighbors.and loved ones alike.
Create diversity in your farm just like jungle Instead of an entire farm mono culture - create a variety of different vegetation on your land. Different vegetables, flowers, trees mixed with wild grass and small jungle like areas. Learn what vegetables, herbs and flowers match together. Mix flowers and vegetables, blooming shrubs and blossoming trees amidst fruit trees. Create a piece wild and beautiful looking harmony. Nature is like mankind, different plants helping each other, healing each other reinforcing each other. Rather than growing in straight rows - copy wilderness and jungle and grow in harmony. A row or mono-culture is man made disharmony. Wilderness is God created harmony - thus stronger than man made rows.
Jungle and wilderness is strong because of diversity Learn how to create your own diversity on your land. How? Take a small piece of your land, may be 50x50 meters. Buy all kinds of seeds from flowers, herbs, vegetables, poultry food seeds, etc. 20-50 different types of seeds. From some plants you may want to choose different varieties to see what grows best or strongest. Then prepare your piece of test land for the new seed first. Get all surface fine crumbly and moist. May be you choose a few days with cloudy weather or light rain to help the seeds grow faster and easier. Now mix all seeds in a big pot. One pot of seeds with dozens of different kind of herbs, flowers, etc. now spread all seeds evenly on your entire prepared land. Cover the seeds gently depending on seed type. larger seeds a little deeper, small seed grains just barely covered by soil. Moist all area gently. Irrigate multiple times a day. 2-3 days later the first seeds start to grow. If you made a good choice of all your favorite herbs, vegetables and flowers - a few months later you have a wild looking rich growing variety of vegetables in your garden.Decorated with flowers and green grass/herbs. Avoid to mess up your newly created wilderness - just leave it up to nature and natural selection which plant to grow and survive and which to die.
Learn about origin of fruits and plants you plant Study the history of your planned vegetables, fruits or flowers. Many flowers, fruits and vegetables have been imported from far away countries, from other climate zones. The more such plants or trees are moved away from their original climate zone, the more likely they are getting weaker and prone to insects and other illnesses. A tree in a totally wrong climate gets weaker and weaker and thus less resistant to aggressive insects or other affects of wrong climate. Insects or beetle eating up trees such as the coconut beetle are nothing else but God sent cleaners to remove whatever disturbs natural balance. Examples for easier understanding: Grapes are planted on all continents. Even in colder zones such as Switzerland. We had a small vineyard. Grape leaves are prone to mildew if growing in a wrong climate with too little sunshine and too much fog or clouds. Hence additional chemical spraying is done to compensate for wrong climate. Grapes are less sweet and vine less fruitful and less tasty. Yet farmers often hang onto a particular fruit or plant just for profit or even worst out of tradition because we always did so. Similar to sage - a beautiful herb for seasoning, herbal tea and herbal medicine. The sage shrub grows even in cold climate of central Europe easily. But if grown in semi-shadow the sage leaves may be covered by mildew as well. For the same reason - too little direct sunshine hours. Another last example would be our globally appreciated tomato. Tomato grows almost all around the world. But only a very few country have truly delicious and tasty tomato! Such are the Canary islands, Italy and a few similar places. While we have tomato plants in central Europe, in India or Philippines. none of them are even nearly as tasty. The reason: It is either too little sunny (central Europe) or too tropical. Tomato is NO tropical fruit at all. To develop its full delicious taste tomato needs a precise climate/temperature zone. Hence most of the plants and vegetables we currently have may be imported from exotic remote countries. Use Internet and research the history and true origin of your favorite plants, trees and flowers. The study the original climate, temperature, rain situation, etc from that original country and see if your location is very close the the native home of your favorite plants. In organic farming or organic gardening we need to learn to focus on true needs of plants to free ourselves from the need of chemical "protection". All plants and trees always are strong when grown in their native climate. Look at jungle and wild grass on the many nature pictures seen here. The you see that mother nature grows huge quantities of biomass without fertilizer and without any pesticide, fungicide or herbicide. When some gardeners or farmers have problems with particular plants or trees, then may be they insist of having their plants in wrong locations. The price for wrong choice is a lifetime struggle for healthy harvest or mere survival of the plantation with all additional cost of work and chemicals involved.
Avoid to copy other farmers and try to be different To be different requires inspiration and the courage to be a pioneer - the first to do something your way. People are lazy and prefer to have others do the inventions, the research, the testing and as soon as they see what is successful, they copy. In Internet as web publisher I see more people copying me than people doing something on their own! The very same in family business or farming. The point however is: If in one region, one province, one country or even a continent more and more people do the very same type of farming, then we turn such a growing area more and more into a mono-culture and thus we start to create an ever growing imbalance in nature. If however we try to be different from all others, we create a new, unique market with little or no competition and a unique customer market. Whatever we plant needs to be naturally accepted and welcomed by our consumers. One of the primary goal of all farming concepts is to create self sufficiency within each village, each region, each country as much as naturally possible. Hence after dozens of potato farms or corn farms, we need a huge variety of vegetables, herbs for seasoning, berries, fruits, flowers, etc. In a country of rice eaters - may be its time to review our addition to rice. May be it is easier for farmers to produce less rice but in addition some corn, some potato, some sweet potato and lots of vegetables. Example Philippines. Our Filipino love fish, pork, chicken and chicks, love and almost no fruits and even less salads or vegetables. That however is a matter of tradition and of lack of education! It is commonly accepted that fruits, vegetables and salads are healthy and excellent for a well balanced nutrition and strong immune system. Hence a little education starting in elementary school would change the entire agriculture habits of planting rice only. We have lots of high altitude mountains suitable for corn, all kinds of vegetables, delicious non-tropical fruits such as oranges, grapes, passion fruit, mandarins, apples, pears, plum, cherry and many more. All you need is to teach people to eat healthier and teach farmers to produce what people eat. In the different island zones of the Philippines, we have opportunities to planet sunflowers, corn, potato and many other substitute for coconut oil or rice. Learn to plant many different varieties of edible food. Study the global agriculture when ever you travel. Travel with open senses, open eyes. Look at all different styles of agriculture, of irrigation, of plantations. The bring home new ideas and implement them on your own farm or in your own garden. Centuries ago bringing home new plants or seeds was easy. Now in many countries such as Philippines the import of seeds, fruits or plants is prohibited and has to go through complicated quarantine procedures. Thus a free and fruitful exchange of new plants and new ideas is nearly impossible thanks to narrow minded government authorities - specially in places where needed most such as Philippine islands but also many other countries in need for better agriculture.
India for example lacks a year round mango harvest - Philippines have all year mango season. Some months more, some less. A free exchange between farmers directly would benefit entire nations. Hundreds of millions of people! Learn to be different from your country's traditional agriculture methods. Be creative and innovative. Create solutions to implement new natural food products into your local region. Be the first to do something new in a village or neighborhood.
If you love and care for nature - nature loves you back Everything in nature makes sense - learn to understand nature to know nature's value. If you realize that nature is God's gift to you and study all nature, then you realize the treasure of nature for your farm, for your entire family and mankind. If you care for nature, keep nature as is and live and farm with nature rather than competing with nature, then nature loves you back and increases your overall quality of life and harvest. Today I visited the "farm" of a rich one here. He got 3 hectares of land formerly jungle just a few decades back. Now the left over of emptiness. No value because all jungle destroyed. Poor harvest this year because no love for nature - means no love from nature. A huge area of destroyed nature with poor farmland. Whatever you do to nature is bouncing back to you. The law of karma also applies to farming and all other aspects of exploitation of nature. There is so much half used real farmland, that we have no need for more farmland in Cambodia, just real need for alternate farming methods, new organic farming ideas implemented and protected by government as well. Instead of quick exploitation of land, learn to be a gardener - a guardian of land. Enhance, care, irrigate during drought when needed, protect from human influence and abuse, keep clean and green. In return nature will show you the wealth of possible harvest in food or medical herbs or other resources originating in wild nature or jungle.
Learn the value of nature before attempting to replace nature Convert into farmland or maintain a treasure. This are the 2 basic likely reactions or mind sets when a new farmer gets a piece of land like this small area less than a quarter hectare in size. Get a tractor and turn it over to plant some corn, potato or a mango tree ... Or Let's sit down and study what kind of treasure God created here and what type of herbal medicine and natural resources are growing here for the benefit of our farm, nature and our planet. Look at the extreme bio-diversity and density of growth. how about just keeping all as is until you fully understand every single plant, shrub or tree growing on this tiny piece of wild nature. This however make take hundreds of years ... we have eternity time! Look at the extreme mixture and combination of different plants next to each other without reducing each others life force or growth. The secret within this area is the right combination of different vegetation enhancing and protecting each other. The very same strong biodiversity can be integrated into regular farming. All you need to learn is to combine: - fruits - fruit trees - flowers - vegetables - herbs - grass - "weeds" all into one piece of land. "Weeds" is what we call if we lack any knowledge or understanding about a particular plant. In reality every single plant is herbal medicine either for animals or humans or for nature itself! Or a plant is a food resource for any above. If you understand nature, there shall be no more "weeds" - only valuable herbs or food in your garden or beauty for your yes, heart and soul. If you take away such beautiful treasures of nature and convert it into "productive" farmland or garden, then may be you get nature feeding on your farmland and garden.
Revenue sources for farming To make a living you need to grow beyond crop and potato. If you do what millions of farmers do, then you may be poor like million others or work cheaper than any helper in cities and factories. A farmer is about lowest paid expert in the world. That has to change and I am going to help you as far as possible by inspiring you with new different ideas. Then it's up to you to convert ideas into reality. Of course part of the farming may include crop, corn, potato to feed this planet. But you need to produce other values besides basic food. Look at the treasure God gave you to guard and protect for this world. Offer these values to the city world - they need your farm and farm products infinitely much more than mobile phones and computers or cars and gadgets! In future chapters I cover: - establish direct communication with end consumers - offer healthcare - invite city people as guests - supply directly to consumers - offer farm life as recreation - offer nature experience - teach basic gardening and other means to create additional substantial revenue sources for your farm family.
The first goal of every farm is self sustainability The easiest way to earn is to save. Living for a farmer should be free, because a farmer should be free of mortgages and debts. Simple and small, but owned by you and never a bank. The next step is to evaluate what your entire families and relatives love and what among those food products you can produce yourself on your farm. Hence you have a number of different fruit trees to satisfy your family needs, crop and other basic food for all year. All vegetables, salads and herbs. By the end of all self sustainability you may find a few products missing from your own farm production. Hence you need to produce surplus in exchange of money or missing goods. On our own mountain farm, we had about a dozen cows and that resulted in some 50 liters of milk for sale. The entire cattle story was the biggest work load and largest loss in money. My parents failed to understand and calculate real numbers. In addition we had a number of apple, pear, plum and cherry trees and within the first few years planted 450+ more plum trees and some 150 more sour cherry trees. In addition to several other sources for additional revenue. The mixed fruit production gave more net $ than the entire cattle but at a tiny fraction of machinery, expenses and work load! For complete self sustainability of an entire family and relatives, a farm size of less than one hectare is plentiful. In good climate zones half a hectare is sufficient for a huge variety of healthy organic food for your entire family and guests of your family.
Offer guest rooms on your farm Every farm is a treasure for our health. That is specially valid for small farms far away from cities and "civilization". People in cities are getting more and more sick and need your farm to recover, to heal, the rediscover nature beauty and happy life in a natural environment amidst a loving family. Therefore every farmer outside villages, in remote areas, even in most simple living conditions has a truly valuable nature experience to offer. Two situations for vacation and recovery on a farm. The first in a third world country, such as Cambodia or Philippines. The other in traditional farms in central Europe or similar destinations. Here I start with tropical situations. Look at a little house I sometimes call home on a very remote tropical island. Such a small nipa hut of 3.5x3.5 meters plus a small shower/toilet costs less than 500 US$. An amount a hard working farmer needs to afford. There are no furniture needed except a bed, chair and table. The true value you have to offer is God made nature and a simple life that helps your city-guests to find the true values of life again and reorient their own life. People from cities need no gold course, no tennis and no SCUBA diving at all. What they really need is quiet and peace and real nature. A few days, weeks or months without any distraction. Just quiet, simple wild nature. That is what every organic farm has to offer plentiful. The less "development" your home area has, the more natural environment and healing nature you have to offer. The value of a vacation on your farm is priceless. Hence if you add a little simple wooden or nipa hut on your farm land in a quiet corner, then you have a guest house for visitors from your own country's cities or from any other place in the world. For the small little house I pay 11 US$ a day. I declined the discount for weekly or monthly rates the owner offered me because I belief that a home in such a beautiful environment is priceless and needs no discount. Additional revenue source then becomes possible meals you offer to your guests if there are no other restaurants nearby. Hence most of the time I eat at home and the house owner wife cooks homemade food for me - including my special wish for vegetarian food. Later I may write more about having guests. For now think about your possibilities. Keep in mind as the key asset and major value God made nature. That is more than any high class hotel chain ever can offer to this world! Only small farms in a wild, remote natural environment have the benefit of true healing nature as part of farming revenue.
Add nature beauty for your guests Every farm location has a unique environment to offer for guests. Make sure you know what particular values your own neighborhood and nature has for guests from other countries or cities. I remember that my favorite uncle came to visit us mainly for the excellent fishing opportunities we had within walking distance. Other locations may include jungle, forest, beach, river, flowers, wild life, mountains and many other scenery and natural environment specialties. Millions of people out there love to enjoy exactly what you may overlook as true value of your farm. Your nature is unique, specially if you are living in remote areas without chemical farming, without industrial pollution. Even having no electricity, no TV, no radio or no entertainment nearby may be an asset rather than a disadvantage. Nature pure is the greatest healing value you can offer. Beware of all the beautiful sunsets, animal encounters, insects and butterflies, jungle vegetation and fresh air you have. That is enough. There is no need for luxury because you have the most valuable luxury most city people have lost centuries ago - nature! Hence instead of offering recreation or adding excuses for having no recreation. Emphasize on the nature beauty you have, on true untouched nature, jungle, forests, wild life, nature paths and all the beautiful water, creek, river or beach scenery to enjoy. When ever I go out of cities, I see but beauty and happy children in a most beautiful natural environment. A simple life as the secret to happy life in health and a loving neighborhood. A farmer is like a gardener or landscaper, protecting and caring for God's nature. Later I may teach you how to promote or advertise your vacation home on a farm. meanwhile you may start cleaning up your empty rooms or add a small tiny hut. The one I love is just 3.5x3.5 meters with a large bed. That is plenty of room for weeks or months or longer amidst beautiful nature. With a loving neighborhood you may build such a small guest house all by yourself at near zero cost except for bedding and a few items. A brief warning: These opportunities are strictly for real and experienced farmers living and working on a farm. These are NO revenue opportunities for city people looking for another easy lifestyle to create another guesthouse or country hotel. The main value you offer is a small but real farm as a home for guests. An organic farm managed since years, decades or generations in full harmony with God's nature. Your knowledge and expertise about your home in nature is the real value you offer and get paid for. You may have hundreds or thousands of questions to answer about how you live, grow up, work with nature, etc.
Philippines farm house Traditional farm houses in the Philippines mostly are nipa huts made of bamboo. Roofing material either nipa or a high strong dried grass depending on availability. This beautiful farm house shows another need for organic farming: To produce your own construction material for initial construction and annual maintenance of your own home. Bamboo is the world's fastest growing grass and usually grows in a single season to its full size of up to 15-20 meters. This house is a little different from most other Philippine nipa houses. The upper level is entirely for privacy - bedroom, living area and balcony. The lower level is living area or many, including guests. Normally the kitchen is inside or directly attached to the house. Here the small house on the left is the kitchen house. The kitchen outside as separate building has purely practical reason. If you work in a farmland, mainly rice fields, you always are dirty. Coming home for a quick snack or drink is easier when all kitchen is easily accessible without carrying dirt inside the house. Another reason: If you prepare food and need some fresh herbs or extra vegetables, you are next to the garden to grab what you need without carrying dirt into your home. The small kitchen house has a table and benches to accommodate at least 8 persons, the mother and all 7 children. This small farmhouse was part of several components of Cyberspace Ashram's last year's Christmas gift for a widow having grown up with 7 children all alone for the past 20 years. The family father, a farmer, died 20 years ago. To pay his hospital bill, the family had to sell all previous property of 7 hectares. This tragedy of sick medical system sustained by greedy inhumane medical doctors shows what happens when people are scared to die and pay whatever charged in an attempt to "survive" in hell. The farmer died anyway, leaving his entire family, all 7 children and widow without home, without land, without food. Just recently a new property of 3 hectares beautiful farmland was obtained with all the tools and a farmhouse missing. A nipa house made of bamboo lasts for about 8-10 years with minimal annual maintenance except for roofing. Bamboo should be grown on own property thus making maintenance free for all future.
Kitchen house on Philippine farm To have your kitchen separate from your living house has but benefits in a farm house. A farm is different from city. In a farm it is about daily long working hours in the fields, garden and forest. In tropical environment of South East Asia with long months of rainy season and lots of field work being done in flooded rice fields. It is apparent that you always work barefoot in deep mud. Going for a snack home or a hot soup or tea is easier if you just walk from the field into a separate kitchen house with a large table to seat all family. That keeps your living area inside the actual farm house clean all day long and thus reduces cleaning work. There are other benefits of having a completely separate kitchen house: - all ash is out of your home - all kitchen waste is out of your home - you can walk between garden and kitchen without having to worry about dirt being carried into your home - all steam, smoke and fire from your cooking is out of your home. - a separate kitchen house is easier to ventilate and thus makes cooking healthier than if done indoors with all smoke caught indoors. - in case of fire, the kitchen house is separate from living area and would make a possible fire easier to control. - if having visitors from neighborhood you never have to worry about any street of field dirt being carried indoors. Just welcome your guests and enjoy their company with some homemade food. - during sunny season you can have tables and benches outdoor open air and enjoy eating under the sky - my preferred version! If you have many children - you know as a mother to value the fact of never having to worry about all the stuff and dirt kids bring into kitchen when hungry. Kids, specially farmer children are hungry all day and mother may be preparing or keeping food ready all day long to keep all baby angels smiling and happy. No more worry about having to clean up living room all day long.
How to convert grass land into garden To convert grass land into fertile garden or a nursery needs loving care. Just cutting the grass never is enough. Rice fields have different soil requirements from herbs, vegetables or a nursery. You have the typical tools, a pushcart and then the work starts. A few simple steps follow - see next picture.
Dig deep and add bio waste for mulching Adding new soil is a wrong procedure - converting existing soil is more efficient. First we dig row by row deep, may be half meter deep and pile up that soil next empty slot. Now we take quantities of natural bio waste we find on our farm and nearby forest or jungle. Old banana plants cut into junks and pieces, old rotting grass, vegetable waste, kitchen waste, old leaves collected from forest ground. Rotting old wood from jungle. A mixture of different bio material is added layer by layer into the deep space you created. One layer of bio waste, one layer of soil, until all soil is placed back on its original place.
Mulching as bio fertilizer in your garden One garden row is finished and now looks much higher than before. I added and mixed approximately an equal amount of bio waste with existing soil. Now the finished garden row temporarily is higher. In tropical climate bio degradable natural mulching material takes but weeks or a few months maximum to be fully degraded. By that time we turn the soil one more times over and may even add more bio waste as needed until the soil meets our requirements for each particular part of your garden and nursery. Different parts of the garden may have different requirements depending on the type of plants, herbs, vegetables, flowers or trees we plant to grow in our garden or nursery. This part here is planned to become nursery all over. Without well maintained nursery no future plants and thus no future harvest.
Peanut plants grow in heavy poor soil Peanut plants grow in a variety of soil, even heavy soil or poor soil. Even in different temperature zones. The girls on the farm loved it the easy way and planted peanut in soil without additional preparation and the peanuts just love that type of soil. That shows once more the importance of knowing what type of soil each and every plant you wish to cultivate needs for best results. Other areas of your nursery may need sandy soil with a half half mixture of sand and soil. The best is to make a full inventory of your entire property and see what different soil conditions and water/irrigation situations you naturally have in all parts of your land. There is no need to have all garden or the entire nursery at one place. Just keep those plants and seedlings that need intense daily multiple care next to your home. All else may be at other more remote places on your farmland. For far away nurseries, you may wish to make natural fences for nursery protection. Natural fences means growing shrubs like bougainvillea or similar surrounding the garden. That keeps animals out and thus the small plants safe until ready for full exposure to nature.
Adventure vacation for children on a farm Offer adventure for children on your farm as a source of additional revenue. No matter how small or how simple your farm may be. On an island, remote province, mountain or jungle - for children living in cities anything natural always is adventure. The simple fact that on every farm you have a huge variety of different wildlife within your neighborhood, may be animals on your farm or a neighbors farm, all the plants and flowers and forests or jungle ... that is all new to city children. They love your farm and all its exciting new pieces of nature life to discover and to enjoy. If you have guest rooms on your farm, you may offer such rooms for adults, for entire families with children or just for kids. One of the first new services we added to our mountain farm was vacation on a farm for city kids. And the children came again and again year after year mostly the same. Until they were grown up and had their own family and some beyond. Children are hungry - food is zero problem on a farm, you have virtually tons of healthy natural food, fruits and all kinds of organic food from your own fields. Hence on your farm "feeding" city children is no cost factor at all. For city parents however food for their kids is a cost factor! Hence city parents appreciate your healthy food and are willing to pay a honest prices for adventure vacation on your farm. Besides all the adventure a farm has to offer, the side effect for vacation on a farm is improved health and a more responsible lifestyle adapted by children. In nature kids have to learn to pay attention to all, to integrate into nature and to cooperate with other kids to peacefully survive and enjoy all daily adventures without being eaten up by tigers, snakes, crocodiles, fish or other wildlife you have on or around your farm. Another very essential benefit of establishing a relationship with city families is the new possibility of directly supplying organic food, fruits and vegetables or other farm products directly to the parent families of your vacation kids. To purchase food directly from a known organic farm is much cheaper than to purchase comparable quality from city stores, in addition, the families know you and trust you because their very own children experienced and observed your way of producing clean organic food. The result may be repeated visit by the city families purchasing cases of fruits and other farm products, again and again for years or a lifetime. Result for you - a steady demand of good farm products from your own little farm, may be even from a few of your neighbors' farms to complement your own products and an increased revenue on your farm in exchange of your hard work.
Children may add to family resources while having fun A few hours of having fun may produce all the food kids eat and more. The children on the previous picture having fun and harvesting valuable food for their families. Catching fish, finding edible fruits in jungle and all the other ways of exploring nature may be fun, adventurous - but in addition to all the fun, children actually contribute substantially to the family resources and may bring home more food than they can eat. Just a very few hours of fishing the a simple net in the rice fields or rice field irrigation channels may produce several kilograms of freshest fish. Happy children having fun and bringing home hungry stomachs and plenty of food. For city children such activities are even more adventurous. Most city children nowadays know adventure only on computers and in computer games. Real adventure in God made wilderness and nature, on a little farm far from cities is beyond any computer game. In addition to all the fun, children learn to interact with each other, to team up and work as a team to succeed. Each and every child at some point needs help from a friend. Thus city children learn responsible peaceful social behavior and the value of real work and useful activities as a direct source of daily needs for life. Suddenly the awareness of city children changes and the known source of food moves from supermarket to the actual source you the farmer. As a result of repeated vacation on a farm, city children later on in their adult life may appreciate the true value of your farmer's work and be ready to pay honest prices for all services and goods they consume later on in life. Even the smallest farm can accommodate a few vacation children to add a valuable service offered to the outside world as a new and substantial source of additional revenue to pay for all the outside products you have to get from the world beyond your farm community. For services and products needed from the world, you need to offer services or products to the outside world. Your possibilities are huge and far beyond potato and rice! I will add more tips on additional revenue sources in later chapters to come. By the end of my parents marriage - soon after I left home to conquer and explore/enjoy and learn from and about this world, my parents had up to 36 city children at once on vacation ... The only thing missing was true love between husband and wife in their marriage! To offer vacation or guest rooms on your farm you need above all to be a happy family, happy husband and wife. Because broken families is what city children have in abundance and no need for more during vacation on your farm! Offer simple life but happy life in a loving and caring farmer's family amidst beautiful nature and you'll have success with mixed farming agriculture and nature and farming education/adventure for guests from cities or remote countries.
Profitability of farming - Learn calculation basics for your farm Every life, every activity incurs costs - after all costs paid, we need to have enough to afford a happy life. Farming is a business like any others - costs need to be included in your calculation for a happy life. With lots of work ending each year with a minus, there is no happiness for your family. Hence farmers need to learn all basic calculation aspects to know how to calculate their farming expenses vs farming revenues. In the following several chapters, I shall give you step by step all basic knowledge in details and if needed with practical examples for your own family business to be and remain successful.
Profitability in farming is a need for progress The size of your harvest never guarantees your profit - your calculation need to that job. Take the time to actually do all the coming examples given for your very own farm. Most of these profitability calculations for farms also apply for any other freelance or selfemployment. You need to know where the money is spent and from what activities or products you earn money to pay your bills and living. Without such precise knowledge of your very own numbers, you may have lots of work, even be overloaded with work and yet end each day or year you may end with a minus. Simple due to lack of your own own calculation knowledge about your farm profitability. To join me in the following lessons, you may need a college block or paper and pencil to write and calculate your very own situation. No superficial theories - just practical applications for all kinds of farming! Later in real life you may do all such calculations in your mind. The most important of all the following examples is that you truly understand the principles of how to calculate expenses vs revenues. Once you truly understand all calculation principles, you will be able to adapt or modify all learned lessons to your very precise personal farming situation or family business situation.
A business or farm may be fully flourishing and yet produce a loss Without proper calculation there can be no success in business Profits are needed to pay for all bills, all costs of your entire life and business as well as to invest into a better future by steadily improving quality of products and services provided. Hence honest profits are needed to invest into your future as well as to finance social services, humanitarian help, help for needy ones, help for emergencies and disasters. Years ago I met a friend with a very well going business. A restaurant. He was well frequented, had more guests than most other comparable competitors in the same city. His quality was excellent and far better than almost all other competitors. Yet my friend complained about financial loss every day, every months. It took me all in all about a full year to change his mind. The reason of his loss was his lack of price calculation. He wanted to be cheap, often cheaper than competitors while maintaining better quality. Almost anything he sold was simply too cheap. Food, drinks, coffea, all too low in prices. I gave him some precise numbers or percentage ideas and finally he raised almost all prices by that small margin and suddenly there was no more loss but still the same number of guests. This was one clear example where a potentially successful business may fail or even go bankruptcy just for too low prices. To be too cheap is no service to others. If you drop out of business, then all others who loved your services no longer may enjoy or benefit from your services or products. If you have a sufficient number of guests or customers matching the size of your family farm or family business, then you are a source of help, of usefulness and may be even a source of happiness or joy for others. Hence you need to learn to maintain your healthy business while enjoying your own life as well!
Calculate profitability of your farm - introduction of definitions Only precise knowledge of your numbers allows you to make precise decisions for your farming activities and investments. In the following examples and chapters I use terms commonly used in business calculation and management You as a farmer are manager of your own business and thus need to know the following terms. To help you I add a few definitions used for your clear understanding. Be sure I do all as simple and clear as necessary! The following chapters thus start with definitions and examples for - fixed overhead expenses - variable overhead expenses - total operational cost of your farm - profit margin in business retail or wholesale - retail price mark up To learn how to calculate profitability of your farm, you need to be familiar with above and assign your proper numbers/amounts to each on your papers during later calculation examples.
Fixed overhead expenses in farming Any fix expenses that you have whether you work or sleep, make vacation or work overtime belong into the category fixed overhead expenses. Here a few examples in farming: Some countries may impose a tax or fee per property - per house - per hectare of land owned, per person in your family = fixed overhead expenses You may have bank loans or mortgage on your farm and your bank wants a fixed amount of payback plus interest per year from you = fixed overhead expenses You may have fixed expenses for connection to public electricity, public water supply, public sewage and garbage disposal = fixed overhead expenses You may have fixed expenses for your TV, Internet, radio, mobile or land-line phone connection in addition to actual consumption rates = fixed overhead expenses You may have fixed expenses for social security, medical insurance, farm insurance, accident insurance = fixed overhead expenses You may have lease or rent of buildings, roads, machines independent of any amount of usage = fixed overhead expenses You may have children going to school and have annual recurring expenses for school fee, school books, school uniforms, transportation to school, etc = fixed overhead expenses Even your regular living expenses may or should be added to this category. That means you are for example father and mother plus 3 children - needing a fixed minimum amount for food, clothing, health care, recreation that make your basic cost of living for all persons living in your home = fixed overhead expenses You may have loans on agriculture machinery, car or motor cycle financed by bank loans or by manufacturer with monthly or annual payments = fixed overhead expenses Think about any other regular occurring expenses with fixed monthly or yearly amounts. Those are all fixed overhead expenses that are charged to you even if you have an accident and are unable to work or when you are hanging around or on vacation. Please take now a piece of paper or your college block and start to list all your fixed expenses for your entire farm and family for the past year. Easiest may be you first accumulate your total fixed expenses per year and then divide by 12 to get your monthly overhead expenses for your
farm. You really need to know that amount! If later on you remember forgotten expenses, then please correct your numbers to always have as accurate as possible numbers. There are more expenses that depend on grade of activities or amount of work you do. See next chapter.
Flexible or variable overhead expenses in farming Expenses that depend on the amount of activity or work done are variable or flexible expenses. Examples: You have electric engines such as water pumps, lifts, cranes, refrigerators, air condition, radio, TV, computer, fan, laundry machines, driers, electric welding machines, etc. Obviously the more often you use these machines the more electric power you consume and the higher your cost of electric energy. These are variable overhead expenses on your farm or in your family business. Another variable overhead expense are motor vehicles, tractors and agriculture machinery. The more hours you use them or the more kilometers you drive, the more fuel you consume and the greater the maintenance cost and repair bill will be. = Variable overhead expense. If you have a farm with guest rooms for visitors. There you have flexible expenses - the more guests the more electricity they may need, the more you drive around to do all shopping, pickup or drop off at boat stations or airports, etc. The more cattle or animals you have on a farm, the more likely you have an increasing amount of veterinarian costs as well as many other additional expenses that somehow depend on the number of animals you keep. The more animals you keep on a farm, the more food you have to provide or produce each day - hence a variable expense that entirely depends on the type of farming and number of animals in your farm. The more troubles you create or maintain with your neighborhood, the more lawyers or defense costs you may have for reconciliation and legal activities = Variable overhead expense. Best always is to stay within your limits even in your pollution and be in a loving relationship with all. Cost for accidents. If you are careless, then it is a matter of time until you may be victim of your own carelessness. Carelessness is expensive and may cost more than the entire value of your farm plus your many hectares farmland! Strictly avoid such expenses by learning to be careful, listen to your heart or inner voice (spiritual guidance available to all). Such variable expenses are impossible to predict. Look at the past ten or more years and see what accidents you and your family had. Is the occurrence of accidents increasing or decreasing? I had myself a few very severe accidents until age 19. After leaving home and enjoying my own life in freedom, all accidents with any severe injury or expenses stopped completely. Now you understand the principles of variable expenses. Many of them
are directly related to the amount of work you do. Hence you may understand the importance to actually KNOW all such expenses and calculate your prices for services and products rather than have prices imposed by bargaining customers. Some of the expenses on your farm may have BOTH - a fixed expense part PLUS a variable expense part. Examples: Public electricity. You may have to pay 10 dollars or more per months just to get connected PLUS a fee per kilowatt power usage. Similar for landline phone. You may have a fixed flat rate just for being connected PLUS a minute fee for all calls. Another example of expense combination are motor vehicles. A car for example ( or any similar vehicle) has a normal lifetime of about 8-12 years with average usage. An agriculture machine may live longer - may be 12-20 years of properly services, cared and maintained with moderate usage. Hence a car may experience a total loss of value after its lifetime of 8-12 years. Lets say 10 yrs to make calculation simple. A new car for 20'000 US$ thus may lose each year 2000 US$ in value = fixed overhead. PLUS the same care may incur flexible expenses per mileage used. Lets say you drive 20'000 km per year and the cost per km may be 0.25 US$ = 5000 US$ mileage cost per year PLUS 2000 US$ depreciation per year. The loss of value of a machine due to aging until machine useless is called depreciation. Mileage cost often are available from automobile clubs in various countries and depend on individual countries and the amount of kilometers driven per year. Such statistical mileage cost usually include all maintenance, repair, insurance, etc and are often very accurate as a basic for your exact cost calculation in a farm. Agriculture machines often are more expensive but also more rugged and thus may have a longer life expectation if used carefully and maintained by the farmer properly. The calculation for annual total cost however are the same. The more hours you use your tractor or harvesting machines the higher your variable cost for that machine in addition to fixed overhead expenses for depreciation. Agriculture machines are expensive and often completely obsolete if you take all factors into account. I know one family on an island in the Philippines, many adult children - sons and daughters - all a little lazy. Hence they hire a small tractor to prepare the 2 hectares rice field from a brother in law who owns such a small machine. He charges HALF 50% - of the entire rice harvest in exchange for a few days machine use each year. To be lazy is expensive. We have many weeks time to prepare a field for next harvest. to save half the harvest certainly is worth an extra few days of hard work.
Now you guess already right: Please dig through all your bills of the past 12 months to find and write down all your variable expenses of your average activity you had last 12 months of work on your farm. If paper invoices missing, recall the amounts - add all up to one amount of flexible expenses on your worksheet. Now you have the total operational cost for your farm. 1. your fixed overhead expenses - independent of your workload 2. your variable overhead expenses - depending on work activity That total is your operational cost - your total annual cost of running a farm. That total cost running your farm needs to include your full cost of living expenses for your entire family living on and living from your farm. You have an annual amount. Now divide this annual farm operational cost by 12 to get a monthly amount and also divide the same annual amount by 365 to get a daily operational cost for your farm. later on you may need and use any of above - daily or monthly operational costs for your entire farm with all family members working on your farm.
Total operational cost of production in farming Every single part of your farm production has its own individual operating costs. You should know which part of each farming activity costs how much and earns you how much. Thus you need to know which part is profitable in your farming and which part of your farm work may cost you more expenses than it brings revenue. Let me explain and give you a few examples for better understanding. A few months ago a young farmer woman told me about her successful copra harvest. Copra production in the Philippines is widespread in the Visayas among hundred thousands of farmers. Farmers do it because they are encouraged by the government to do copra and because they always have done copra since long time. Hence like so many times sons do something just because father and grand father and all before have done so. I asked that woman a few questions and she answered: How much did you get. 6000 PHP - (that's about 130 USD) How many harvest do you have per year: 3 I knew the situation and location of that farm quite well: 1 hectare forest with mostly coconut palms is used for that copra production. The farm is about 1 km from the river - a small walking path, no road. 3.5 hrs by boat on a river to the next small village to the copra collecting station. I asked her about: How much did you river? How much did you How much did you How much did you buying station?
pay for the porters to carry the copra bags to the pay for the boat transportation to the village? pay for the unloading of the copra to the pier? pay for the transportation from pier to the copra
I added up all her amounts - and ended up with 50% total costs just for the complete transportation. Leaving some 3000 PHP per harvest actual gross profit. Time 3 for all 3 annual harvests. Makes some 200 US$ per year for one hectare of copra land. Gross profit, because there are more expenses every now and then! Then I added more questions - like: How many times does someone in your village fall down from a coconut palm during maintenance or clean up or harvest ... etc. Coconut palms typically are clean once or twice a year plus the harvest is done by physically climbing up the palms.
May be you now see what I mean by "Every single part of your farm production has its own individual operational cost". Every particular farm activity may have additional unique expenses and risks. Her father died some 20+ years ago after illness in a hospital. The hospital bill was so high that the mother of 7 children had do sell her 7 hectares farmland and farmhouse to pay the medical bill. Leaving the entire family without home and without farmland to provide food and livelihood for the entire family. These or similar expenses may be part of total farm production costs for a particular farm productivity or farm service and thus in real calculated farming ALL such costs, including accidents need to be paid by advance savings made from NET profits. NET profits is the amount of money left after all cost of livelihood and all bills paid for the entire farmer family. Every now and then someone falls down a 10 meter palm. Breaking bones, staying hospital for a few weeks, being injured or even crippled for life in some cases, even dieing in other cases. Palm trees are high and a crash from 10 meters may be unpredictable and painful! Before starting a particular farm production, learn about all aspects, all risks, all prices and expenses and the global or local market situation. Then research alternatives to that traditional farming production. And only after consideration of all facts, all data, all numbers - make a decision based on facts and data rather than on what always has been done by our ancestors. In next chapter I give you one more example about cattle farming or animal farming based on our own mountain farm in Switzerland.
Profitability of animal farming - work and time Animals kept in house or farm will take your freedom and consume your happiness and money. In future chapters I shall elaborate much more on that. Here first some facts and experiences from our own cattle farm. In another chapter I gave already the guideline about cattle and animal farming vs vegetarian farming. Here some more information and facts based on our own small mountain farm in Switzerland. This following is valid for all types of animal farming. Goats, sheep, horses, chicken, piggery, the basic principles and problems apply to all animals. First some brief facts and numbers from our own traditional farm to give you a rough idea: 9,6 hectares land ( half hectare forest, remaining was grass land amidst forests and mountains. 3,5 hectares fenced area for our cattle all remaining grass land was used and needed to supply food over the years we usually had about 8-9 milk cows and about 3 young ones less than a year we had more animals - I write later about. Lets just look at the cattle / milk production part first in this chapter. The 3,5 hectares fenced grass land never was enough to feed all cows even during fertile summer time. From spring to fall, each morning around 4 or 4:30 my father was getting up to cut one load of fresh grass to feed the cattle coming down from the fenced hill for milking. For the frozen winter season, of course we had to cut and dry grass to have sufficient hay for all animals all winter long. This small part of the farm work - to feed a small cattle, requires usually a tractor, machines to cut and transport tons of grass and hay or other food. The result of this small cattle farm part was: Thousands of dollars additional yearly expenses for machinery, financing (my parents had only once in a life to take a bank loan to finance the small mountain tractor). All else always was paid cash from savings. Obviously large energy bills for fuel -including environment pollution by fuel and noisy days or weeks by machines and by all manure produced. Repair and maintenance of all machinery involved in cattle farming. Cost money, time and requires additional skills. All this work usually is self made.
Thousands of hours additional work just cattle related. Thousands? Thousands or hours work per year! Let me detail the working hours in a simple example: Every day 4:30 AM - 8 AM summertime - cutting grass, feeding cows, milking cows, bringing milk to dairy station in village (required another small old car for transportation). Cleaning / brushing cows daily. Cleaning stable daily multiple times. Supervision of cows 24/7/365 - farmer always has to be physically present on farm whatever animals you have. You are away half day, you may find one or several animals injured or killing each other. That happened several times in 10 years on our farm - just for being a few hours away or even minutes too late even while present on farm! Several weeks late winter and late fall to transport all manure into grass land and then distribute it across all land - manually or you buy another machine to do that. We did it manually. That's about 2x3 weeks all day loading and unloading stinking manure - dozens of tons of it! At least once a year pumping all cow sewage by special pump onto several hectares of nearby grassland. That's about 1-2 weeks additional full day work each year - plus engine driven pump and all equipment and energy bills. Of course you need a much larger building to home the cattle for milking and daily care. You need an even larger storage space for all the hay. May be two third or more of our main building was for cattle alone. You need garage and large storage space to park and repair/maintain your machinery. That usually is done in a separate building - a huge garage just for machinery. We had large food silos 4 meter high to store additional fresh fermented food needed for our winter season. That all above is but a small part of overhead work and costs for our small traditional cattle farm. Needless to talk about regular veterinarian visits and bills, sleepless nights when animals get babies, etc. The "positive" side of the work was the revenue from our milk. Cows are pregnant once a year, hence milk production is limited to several months per year. I know quite exactly that from our all cows we delivered/sold to the dairy collection station twice a day 25-27 liters of fresh milk. In today's currency that would have been some 30 US dollars per DAY from all cows, From all work. On a cattle farm you may work some 5000 hrs per year. 3000 USD divided by some 3000 hrs just for the cattle related annual work gives you an hourly wage of ... 1 $ in a high tech expensive country like Switzerland! Even if you improve and optimize here and there - you will earn MUCH less per hours of hard work than any city population ever would get out of the bed to be useful for the world and feed the world! Now prices have changed, gone up, for milk as well as for all machinery and energy. The relationship or work to revenue remains the same. Plus a few hundred dollars a few times per year for small calves or a year old sold to butchery each year to feed the city people with veal and
beef. The gross revenue directly originating from cattle on our mountain farm was in the range of 3000 US$ per year. Minus all work and all expenses for machinery and energy. Our cows were quite happy cows with our large fenced land. The price for letting cows be happy and run around day and night is a much smaller milk production. 8-9 liters twice a day per cow was about the maximum. If you keep your cows prisoners all life - they spend less energy for happy life and thus produce more liters of less tasty milk as "reward". Other countries may have different type of cattle. Look at the picture with the water buffaloes. That is no feeding place they enjoy now, that is just a few hectares of water place they need to be water buffaloes. Water buffaloes love to spend most of their days in the water - lots of water - clean water. But after all the water buffaloes - the water never will be clean again water buffaloes drop all their manure into water, in rivers, in lakes, in ponds, etc where ever your kids swim ... Much more to come on profitability of animals vs vegetarian farming. The you make up your own mind and do what ever makes you most happy together with all your family.
Learn to calculate your own cattle or animal profitability Homework for farmers - calculate your own accurate numbers with guidelines given in this chapter. Learn to manage your farm. To manage your farm you need to know numbers of revenue and numbers of expenses of each part of your farming. Never trust banks nor government guidance - learn to trust your own calculations and numbers. Learn to to your farming right and based on facts and data that are true and correct in your own family or farm interest rather than in the interest of banks and factories supplying you with chemicals and machinery! Every traditional farm typically has multiple sectors that sum up the annual total revenue for a farm. Such as forest, crop, cattle, poultry, fish ponds, dog breeding, piggery, guestrooms, part time jobs during offseason or winter time. We too needed such additional jobs for revenue. Like working in federal or state owned forest for logging paper-wood, construction wood and firewood in small teams of a few farmers teaming up during many winter months. And other full time jobs during certain times of the year. In previous chapters you learned to calculate your fixed overhead expenses and variable overhead expenses in farming to calculate your total operational cost of production for each particular farm production or farming section of your farm. Now it may be time for you to calculate on paper your very own total cost for your animal farming. More precisely when ever possible, split it up by type of animals, such as - horses - cattle (cows, calves) for dairy products / milk production - poultry farming any other particular type of animal farming you do Make sure on the expenses side you add the cost for: Insurance if your country offers animal farm insurance to protect against diseases such as FMD etc. Costs for your veterinarian visits - may be you take the vet bills of the past many years and divide the amount by the number of years to get a better annual cost average. There might be years with little vet expenses and other years with huge vet expenses. Include all costs for animal vaccinations, stable disinfection, etc. Any machinery you use entirely to transport animals, transport food, harvest animal food, manure handling, sewage handling, Any membership, insurance, education, seminars directly related to animal farming. Add expenses for buildings, stable and all related maintenance, taxes and insurance related to all building parts you need just for animals including all garage or storage buildings for harvest, hay and machinery. Add any cost, interest rates, payments, etc for any financing or mortgage you have just for the animal farming part of your farm.
Add cost for temporary helpers and harvest helpers related to animal farming, including rented machines or payable services you may be using for harvest or for the herbicide/pesticide/fungicide spraying. Add all electricity, fuel and other repair and maintenance related to all animal farming and its related machinery. Think about any other expenses you may have that are directly related to your specific animal keeping and farming activity. Add them to the cost of operation for animal farming. One tip to add the correct amount for your machinery: Often you inherit your machines or you purchased them many years ago. Then look back at the old bills, add the purchase price, add the maintenance and repair bills for all the years you have that machine. The divide that total by the number of years the machine is in use to give you the annual cost for that machine. That tractor from your father may be 12 years old and have cost your father 50'000 US$ or even more, including some exchangeable tools and accessories. The bill for all repair, tractor tires, etc may have been some 10'000 USD. You may have forgotten the purchase price your father might had to pay and often finance through bank loans. But may be next year that machine breaks completely down and need to be replaced and you will wake up and see that your savings to replace in cash that old machine may be too little because you never calculated the total cost to adjust your pricing for products and services sold! To add last years fuel bill may be enough for tractor energy consumption cost, but the full depreciation and repair/maintenance need to be calculated either on precise farm industry values available from true statistics or from your own past many years real expenses since purchasing date. In my above example for your old tractor - the purchase price plus repair/maintenance would be 50'000 + 10'000 = 60'000 USD divided by 12 years equals 5000 USD tractor cost in addition to your fuel/oil bills for the same tractor. Similar applies for all other machines you or your parents purchased many years ago. Any time in the future, may be tomorrow or in 3 years you suddenly may need to replace the same machine by a new one and you need to have the full amount in cash in your savings account to stay our of debts and out of dependencies from banks. All the BILLIONS of dollars bank earn and bank managers earn and banks waste for multimillion dollar sponsorships of sailing events, tennis events, etc are all paid by farmers and consumers borrowing money. The cheapest money is your very own savings! Now create the total sum of your entire expenses related to animal farming on your current farm. If you do above for each particular type of animal farming - such as cattle for milk production, then you should now add up all your entire revenues from that particular part of your farming work! After all your revenues added up to one annual amount, take your total revenues per year and deduct your total operational cost to get your total NET revenue per year from each and every part of your farming activities.
Now write down the number of hours you have to work just for that particular type of animal farm work. Like I gave you a brief example from our own old mountain farm in Switzerland. Then take your NET annual profit and divide by the annual number of hours you have just for that particular farming sector. If you have several sectors in your farm, you may add up ALL your total expenses and deduct them from your entire gross cost of farm operation per year to get your entire total NET revenue from all your farming activities and work. When calculating your total expenses on a farm, to be safe with all your expenses, add 10% of all your collected expense invoices to compensate for the hundreds of smaller amounts you never collect invoices. Such as tips given, gifts made, dinners offered, etc to all your neighbors or community and other services you use during the course of annual seasons. 1. How much is your total GROSS farm revenue? 2. How much is your total farm expense? Deduct amount 2) from amount 1) above to get your: How much is your total NET farm revenue? Divide your NET farm revenue by the total hours of work and on duty presence you have per 365 days on your farm. Even easier: A year has 365 days x 24 hrs = a year thus has a total of 8760 hrs! To easier calculate your total working hours, add up all the regular FREE hours you have guaranteed on your farm. How many hours a day can you sleep without ever having to wake up and care for a problem on your farm? How many times a week or year you have a full day = 24 hrs completely free? How many times a year ever do you have a full weekend free from Friday late afternoon till Monday morning ? How many times a year did you ever make a real full vacation - like 2 weeks Caribbean Sea or SCUBA diving in the Maldives or jungle trekking in Cambodia or whatever others working in cities do? How often a year to you have all day off - from morning until evening or from late afternoon until early morning. Just for partying, having fun or going out with friends or dates? ADD all above number of total OFF-duty hours each year. Now deduct that OFF-duty time from the total annual hours of 8760 hrs and you have your approximate total duty or work hours on your farm.
For our own farm, I can confirm that my parents never had a single 24 hrs day OFF in all their farmer's life. There even never was a single 12 hrs period off during the entire mountain farm time. Never a single weekend or a single week vacation all life long until divorce. Even after divorce my father never had a single week vacation until he died age 87 a few months ago. Now he enjoys God's pension at home in heaven. He deserved it through hard work and a life without any love at all. The only time off have been a few times a year some 6 hrs periods used to go to agriculture fairs or agriculture markets and a very few times to visit some relatives. How are your numbers ? I know from all our neighbors and from almost all other farmers I met or visited around the world in the 40 or so countries I worked or visited during the past 40 years that our own family numbers are actually the default for most farmers. Most or all farmers I met have no time off - at least all those having any kind of animal farming. We had much more than just animals - and fortunately my parents adapted and changed during the course of the years until divorce. However my father always was attached to animal farming in addition to new farming activities. The animal farming cost his freedom - the new activities brought the profits to cover expenses from animal farming. More to come in future - see next chapter about organic farming and learn about alternate sources to create organic farm revenues from a real farm. BTW: Did you notice that I use to "wrap" all your calculating home work into pictures with beautiful tropical flowers. That is just some added love to encourage you to really sit down and really calculate on paper accurate numbers. To be successful in your farming and in any other business or smallest one person "family" business (single mothers, single fathers, etc) YOU need to calculate your business numbers to know where the money comes from and where its getting lost or wasted to make timely adjustments in your farming or business!
Spiritual aspects of animal farming Animals love and feel pain just as we humans do. A life as slave in chains or with a rope through your nose is but a life in pain. Have you ever spend some time in jail? I did 3 days disciplinary jail in my Swiss army time for refusing an order many decades ago - it is no fun for anyone. Only extreme egos keep slaves. All loving souls give freedom and protect freedom of all creation - also animals and all nature! Spiritual aspects of animal farming There is no difference in all spiritual rules and aspects for animals as all spiritual rules of love for humans! Animals are made of love by God, so are humans. Animals are given freedom by God and are made to be treated with love in freedom. Animals have a divine right to live their natural God made environment just as much as all humans have a birthright to live in nature and enjoy absolute freedom in a world without limits, without frontiers and without artificial restrictions of any kind. The law of karma applies to handling animals as much as to handling humans. The only law that applies to all creation, animals, plants and humans as well as all other beings is God's law of love! Any violation of that law of love leads to karma. Karma in handling animals often leads to diseases that affect animals and humans alike. Like rabies, tuberculosis (tuberculinum bovinum), FMD (destroying entire cattle and thus the livelihood of farmers abusing cattle) and many other more or less destructive or painful diseases that may kill entire animal population on a farm or that might kill humans in abuse of God's law of love. karma usually painful to a degree equivalent or proportional to pain caused to the animals. On our small mountain farm, a few years into growing pigs, we had one such disease leading to total loss of all pigs and a six year waiting period before having any new pigs again. We had FMD (foot and mouth disease) in our region and many farmers lost all cattle. We had rabies amidst all wildlife in our village and region with all consequences. My father had almost yearly a more or less severe accident ... Like in most farms, there was lots of violence involved in our farming methods. No animal farming is done with love today. Hence new even more violent forms of animals diseases spread around the world, such as Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE), bird flue and many others. Keeping animals as prisoners or slaves, to work for humans, to be devoured by humans as food or even to be abused as scientific test object is a violation of God made rules of love and thus leads to karma. You may belief or disbelief but latest when you feel illness or experience accidents or disasters you may learn by feeling. Better to open your heart and feel what animals feel when kept in chains, locket into stinking stables for life, held within small fences, etc. Even birds, pets or fish in aquarium or small artificial ponds are
unhappy! Short and simple: NO animal is made to be exploited, used or abused by humans. No human is superior to any other part in God's creation. A living beings of any kind are absolutely identical in God's heart and priority. All animals are made as a source or joy, for children and adults and God alike. Animals have feelings, memories, emotions of love or sadness. Animals love their own kind and offspring. Currently animals make mistakes and create karma just as most humans do. Animals can spiritually learn and spiritually progress just as mankind does - often even much faster than mankind. Animals can communicate just as all other spiritual creations on earth and beyond. Also plants have emotions and can communicate! All beings have emotions and absolutely ALL beings of any kind can develop and practice love to a greater or smaller degree. Just as humans do practice love to a smaller or greater degree at this time on earth. A truly spiritual human never keeps animals in any form of imprisonment, cache, stable, fence or home. If ever you do keep animals then keep them in absolute freedom and let them go away from you or come back to you as they wish. The easiest way to enjoy the company of animals as pets or friends is to invite wild animals into your home or garden or farm. You can to so by producing delicious products, fruits or other crop to offer to wild animals and make them feel that they are welcome and can enjoy what you offer as additional plants of your farm. As a very simple rule of thumb, offer at least 10-15% of your entire harvest or plantation to animals around your property. If you do so from the bottom of your heart, then you may experience some day that wild animals may leave your other sections of your farming almost untouched. KNOW what your wild animals in nature love MOST and offer them some of those delicacies in your farm or garden. May be animals love something specially coming from your heart that nature offers little or nothing at all. Examples: Elephants may love some sugar cane, fresh young bamboo (just cut/ harvest your old bamboo annually to always have fresh bamboo), pineapples, sweet corn, sweet mango, papaya, water melon and many other fruits will surely enjoy the heart of any elephant in your backyard! Birds and butterflies love sunflowers. Birds eat the sunflower seeds, your kids as well.Butterfly caterpillars love to eat entire fresh leaves of young growing sunflower plants = just plant more to feed the caterpillars if you love to enjoy butterflies to brighten up your children hearts. A single half grown butterfly caterpillar may eat almost all leaves from a 1 meter sunflower plant in a single night. Learn about wildlife and offer something loving to nature and in return you receive a treasure of most loving encounters and experience from
nature. Offer love and you receive nature's love. Offer special delicacies to nature and you receive natures sweetest treasures of herbal medicine and other treasures God has prepared for you in nature. I truly love nature and therefore never again had any animals as pets since my repeated spiritual oneness with God. In earliest decades or my current life on earth, I had Persian cats and many other animals and also became a victim of my Persian cats. Decades ago when it was time to travel into the world as a SCUBA diving instructor - all suitable islands to setup a dive resort required quarantine for cats - usually 3-6 months. I never would have tortured my cats with a 3-6 months quarantine. Hence I stayed in a rather unpleasant country and made the very best possible with the situation, with all my Persian cats. As a diving instructor I had thousands of marine life encounters and experienced countless animals who really enjoyed being caressed! Almost 40 years ago I had a king cobra as pet, free in my bedroom - part of day in the garden, most of the day in my room. Now I love to enjoy animals in their God made home - in wild nature, tropical islands and in jungle. If you are in peace with all nature, with all animals, then you also are in peace with God and all his creation beyond this planet! Read on in next chapters about farming in harmony with God and nature to be more successful also financially in your current farming. There are dozens or even many hundreds of chapters just waiting to be written. In a few days I plan to go to the mountains and make more educational pictures for this organic farming section - to help you as much as I have time left on this planet before returning home to my waiting family in God.
Retail price markup and profits The percentage by which an original buying price is increased to calculate the sales price of a product is called markup. All dealers add a certain percentage markup to their initial buying price. You need to know where the money is going or even wasted and then you learn to do direct business for greater efficiency and more honest money distribution. I shall teach you how during the coming chapters! In many retail markets a markup of 50% to 100% or even more is quite common practice. Usually - the cheaper a product the higher the markup added. The more expensive a product - the smaller the markup added. Examples: A dealer may buy 10 pieces of a spare part at 10 US$ total cost = 1$ each peace. He then may sale the same product piece by piece for 3$ each. That means he adds 200% to his buying price per unit. That markup is nothing exceptional for many items of daily use. I give a few other examples out of my own business practice with real world numbers: Decades ago I worked as an electronic technician for a fine Swiss company. My "Boss" or better best friend Walter learned early to purchase electronic components needed to build or repair high end electronic equipment directly from original component factories in Asia. He traveled each year 4 or more weeks to several places in Asia to maintain personal relationships with the CEOs and to gain permission to purchase directly from OEM (original equipment manufacturer) rather than through all official distribution channels. Actually our small but fine business was far too small to qualify for direct factory purchase. Only as a result of annual personal visits, Walter obtained the permission to order as few as 100 units per item or even less for more expensive units. Products we imported directly were among others: resistors capacitors diodes transistors but also transceivers and other complex high tech electronic units. As a result of our direct OEM relationship, we purchased diodes by the hundreds or thousands for 2-5 cents a piece. From a regular distributor in Switzerland the price would have been 10 fold or more. We purchased resistors by the thousands at 0.5 to 1 cent a piece for most values we needed. The distributor price would have been 20 or more cents a piece for high quality products. Much later during my Diving business time, I purchased O-rings (high quality rubber seals) by the hundred or thousand directly from a high
quality manufacturer which happened to be in same city. As a tiny one person SCUBA business I went to that factory, eyes to eyes, talked with the boss of that large manufacturer, purchased, paid cash. At a price of 1-4 cents per piece. The SCUBA equipment importer would have sold me a piece at 20-50 cents in bags of 10. The typical sales price to end consumer often was 1$ or more for regular repair and maintenance work. In our modern society there normally is more than one dealer between original manufacturer and end consumer. My diving equipment distributor/wholesaler was buying from the equipment manufacturer who then most likely purchased the same O-ring either from a distributor or may be directly from O-ring factory. Each man or business between original manufacturer and end consumer adds his markup and thus increases the end cost of an item or complete product. At your expenses! The very same applies to all farming products as well. To potato farms, rice farms, corn farms, diary product / milk farms, etc. Most farmer products are sold to a local collecting station, then to a regional collecting station, then may be to a national collecting station and finally sold into the retail market, super market central warehouse or into global market via export channels and/or redistribution channels. Again to wholesale, retail and at the very end of the complex business chain, may be to the end consumer of the food chain = you.
Profit margin in farming, business retail or wholesale We learn the relationship between markup and profit margin Another word you need in the farmer business world is "profit margin". The difference between markup and profit margin is simple. When we buy a product for 50US$ and sell it at 100$ - then our markup is 100%. Our profit amount is 50 US$. When we look at the sales price of 100$. That amount of profit = 50$ is equal to 50% profit margin. When we use the word "markup" we consider our buying price to be 100% and add our markup to obtain our sales-price in $ (or any other currency of course). In "profit margin" use - we consider the sales-price to be 100% and calculate the percentage of our net profit in $ from that sales price. Both terms are used and we need to understand the difference between markup and margin in business language. As an example from a 3 months job I once had with a large Swiss company specialized in high tech power plant components: Most high tech companies in traditional (NON-USA) countries have very reasonable wages even for top CEOs rarely more than 5000$ to 10'000$ a months during my time In USA CEOs get up to hundreds of millions of $ a year wage plus bonus plus incentives ... !!! During that 3 months job I was working as a sales engineer creating the offers for power plant component according to customer specifications. For all the price calculations in our offers there was one percentage our profit - to be added to the real production costs. That profit was in the range of 8%! That profit percentage was to cover any mistakes, warranties, loss due to foreign currency exchange fluctuations, etc. Hence a rather small percentage to cover all eventual unpredictable additional expenses, risks and losses in our own production for a high tech product what took about 12-15 months to be produced after receipt of final order. Original raw materials we needed for the production may have a change in price, change in transportation due to energy price change, etc. Every farmer should add about 10% to the calculated cost for all his farming products or services he sells to cover any risks that he may have to carry. Risks such as Typhoon, earthquake, flooding, bad weather. The weather is an essential factor in farming and may be too dry, too wet, too cold, too hot and thus affect the quality and/or quantity of our regular average annual harvest. All such risk need to be covered and financed in advance by having some small but reasonable savings to pay for any loss or damage without
endangering our livelihood. If you farm in a high risk area such as in a Typhoon zone or volcano neighborhood or a region with unpredictable heavy rain changing with periods of extensive drought - then you may have to adapt and increase that markup to 12 or 15 or even more percent to cover your average annual risks. Average calculated on the basis of your past 20 or more years of occurring damages and losses due to weather or natural disaster in your area. Prices and profit margins need to be calculated based on facts and real life numbers - never guessed. All profit margins need to be reasonable and honest. More soon on the importance of profits in our farming life.
Without profit there is no progress Learn to make a honest and reasonable profit to afford continuing education, seminars or workshops and to invest in improvements for a better future of your farm and family. Over the years and decades of your farming, you may progress and improve your farming tools and farming methods. However notice that many of the high tech farming methods are expensive and no real progress at all. Many of the new age farming techniques and farming methods use all kinds of chemicals, hybrids of plants, vegetables, fruits and flowers or in recent years even worst the use of GM food = Genetically Modified food! Many of modern farming techniques suggests high tech machinery. All such machinery is expensive, consumes energy, creates pollution and creates financial pressure on you as a farmer in addition to all stress on our environment. The more you invest in machinery, the more fragile your farming life may become and the more your freedom is going to be controlled by contracts, mortgages and pressure coming from your bank or government financing your farming technology. The modern society above all wants profit. Often profits at any cost, even at the cost of cheating or lying or misinforming customers. Look at the millions of people in USA or other countries these very moments fearing repossession of their homes due to unaffordable mortgages that brought these house or home owners into a situation of bankruptcy or loss of property. Many of these people who got mortgages and loans never really were in a situation to pay back their loans. Financial institutes, banks and credit institutes are aware that many of the mortgages never will be paid back in time and that the properties will be repossessed eventually. The result of such practices leads to more banks owning more real estates and more home owner or farmers losing all their livelihood. One of the many true and most valuable benefits of farming is your freedom and your ability to achieve a highest possible degree of self sustainability. To enjoy this benefit of freedom as a farmer, learn to stay within your financial limits. Stay free of any debts. Progress only as far as you can pay in cash from your very own savings. To have savings to invest into a better future, you need to make net profits. Your services and farm products however need to be affordable by all who need your farm products. Hence all your pricing needs to be really calculated and honest all the way. That is where your heart is challenged to make all your decisions without greed for maximum profits but with the wellbeing of all your community in mind. With the many easy loans and mortgages or payment schemes offered along the any purchase of machinery, equipment of homes, the
temptation is huge to get easy access to a pleasant life in luxury or comfort. At the expense of eventually losing all - your freedom and all your property and home for all future generations to come. Stay free. Free of debts. Free from any entanglement. Free from any troubles or contracts. Produce as much as you reasonably can all on your own. The small remaining resources needed from outside you need to learn to obtain in exchange of your excess production or additional services provided by you as farmer to the outside world. It is better to be a small farmer but free, than to be a large farmer entangled in financial problems, pressure and debts.
Traditional farming methods vs modern high tech farms Old fashioned farming often may prove more sustainable and environment friendly than new methods invented in recent decades. Often traditional farming involving nature and manpower rather than modern technology and expensive machines has worked for mankind thousands of years. The few decades of high tech development on our planet however has already lead to environment pollution problems and to energy problems across the planet. Quite often it is far more profitable and far better for a healthy, happy family and happy community when people would stick more to traditional, conventional production technology and methods. More manpower less chemical and technological power in our environment. The only "benefit" of all high tech machinery for farming is the profits banks and the entire financial world and industrial world is making at your farmer's expense. Most of the high tech machinery may make harvesting or farming in general faster or less sweaty - but at the expense of ten thousands of hundred thousands of dollars in debts. Secured via bank loans and mortgages over a period of decades or an entire lifetime. Your entire family may get into deep debts for life. That means you become and remain a slave of the financial worlds or dependent from your government. Whoever gives you money is owning you and your family property. With that in mind, it surely is a much better feeling for all your family to stay smaller, have a more simple but natural and happy lifestyle, but remain full owner of your entire property. Invest whatever you can pay in cash from savings! Stay within your own financial limits and if ever growth in needed or desirable to be profitable and support your entire family, then grow steadily and in small steps year by year until you feel that your farm has reached an ideal size for a lasting happy life of all your family and local community. To finance such step by step growth or improvements in your farming, a reasonable and honest profit is needed every year. Every new season there should be changes, improvements, modifications to make your living and farm production more environment friendly and more family friendly as well. No profits whatsoever justifies the loss of your happy family life or the loss of your loved one in a divorce due to negligence resulting from excessive spending or excessive working. The more you spend for gadgets and modern high tech, the more overtime you may have to work to earn the financing. That is a spiral situation that grows and grows until you lose control of your financial situation and your entire economy may collapse or your family go bankruptcy.
The purpose of honest profits in farming Only strong people can be helpful for each other. Strong people need no insurance. Strong farmers help each other rather than needing help from government or insurance companies. The best insurance costs money. More money that you ever get back. The insurance company wants to make profits - high profits. The natural alternative to insurance is a strong community where all farmers have a reasonable saving. For most situation in tropical and subtropical countries such as Cambodia, Philippines and all similar countries such as India, South/Central America such as saving for emergencies may be as little as 100 at best a few hundred dollars. The power of a strong community is the extended family sense among all community. One for all - all for one. Helping each other in joint forces in case of emergencies. If or any reason a farmer within a community loses his house to a fire or Typhoon or natural disaster - a strong community with each one donating 100 dollars can instantly and fully help the victim to get a new house or whatever was lost in a natural disaster or accidents. A strong and loving farmer community can help each other provided all farmers have something to give in case of emergencies occurring. That requires that all always have an emergency saving for such situations. I give you 2 examples where such community help worked in my own neighborhood: About 1962 our neighbor farm burnt down in a fire. A visiting boy age about 5 plaid with matches and in an instant all farm was on fire. I just came home from school and the neighbor's farm was still on fire, the fire squad just arriving a few minutes later. That was about mid or late summer and thus all current harvest was on fire as well. The farmer's family - 4 brothers and sisters, all about age 60 + and without any children lost all house and all harvest except the animals and cattle. As soon as the fire damage was repaired temporarily, many farmers from our small and rather poor village drove by with their tractors and brought a load of hay and other food and goods for the victims' farm. All gave as a true gift without need for returning the goods. All was replaced within shortest time. Except the house was fully lost and for some reason the 4 old farmers where counseled to rebuilt a new farm, fully financed by bank loans and about one third by a then available government subsidies available to all farmers completely renewing/rebuilding their entire farm buildings. Considering the age of all 4 and the fact that no direct children were existing to maintain and continue that farm, that last part of a fully financed house for old people about to retire from active hard work on a
mountain farm certainly was bad and wrong advice. In today's money that new farm building was about 200'000 US$ or more in total debts after the government subsidies. Another example of community help happened just a few years ago in the Philippines. A very old fishermen in my direct neighborhood lost all his small old house to a fire. The neighborhood collected money to help that old man. Within just several days all money was successfully collected in amounts of a few dozen to a few hundred dollars per donor and the construction of a new, better but still small house was started The total cost of the new house was in the range of 700 or so dollars. An amount any strong community should be able to give within just a few days as a gift of love. To have such gifts of love in case of emergencies in your own family and community or neighborhood - you need to make a reasonable honest profit and have such emergency savings available for instant help if needed. You may keep some savings in kind for emergencies. Like in the case of neighbor farm burnt and all helping farmers contributed with hay, straw and other food needed for family and all animals. Food like crops, potato, etc. Anything a farm needs to survive a half year long wintertime with snow.
Balance between organic farming, high tech farm and stone age methods The key in happy life is to find the balance between technology progress and natural lifestyle. To find the golden middle between technical development and natural happy lifestyle in full harmony with God's nature is a key lesson for all on earth. Myself I grew up during the phase of our global technology development. Yet I grew up in a rather poor family working mostly with traditional methods of using manpower and traditional farming and working methods. Using simple tools and using only limited motorized machinery. All my life I was open for both - new high tech as well as traditional natural lifestyles and working methods. I tested and used both at some phases of my life. From a spiritual point of view we all have eternity time to do whatever needs to be done to progress. To survive eternity however we need above all make sure that our environment, our planet survives the next few years and decades! There is no need to have all farming work or other work done by automated machines within days or weeks if we consider that we have eternity time. Manpower on a farm is free for all farmer family. A farm above all is intended to provide for the farmer family, their closes friends and relatives or sometimes for guests and visitors. All that part Including a surplus production in exchange for all the outside goods, tools and accessories we may need from our outside world can easily be achieved without any machinery at all. Without any machinery at all we can manage to have a happy and healthy family life with sufficient time for love, family, social community and recreation! However there are a very few affordable machines that may make our all life substantially easier or safer. We may have to figure out by trial and error or by careful intense observation of other cultures to figure out what technology and machines may be truly beneficial to all our local community and our family and which new technology development just serves money making industries at the expense of additional environment pollution and expenses that may require financing or substantial additional amounts of working hours to compensate for additional investments and cost of operation in our family farm business. Keep in mind the relationship between machinery used and expenses / working hours needed to pay all additional expenses arising from technology used in farming: The more machinery you use in your farming, the higher the fixed overhead expenses in your farming cost and the higher and more unpredictable your variable cost of operation become. More machinery may result in more repair, more maintenance, more technical problems, more stress, more frustration, more fear of accidents, more fear of possible damage TO machinery, more fear of loss/theft of machinery.
Finally to pay for each and every machine used, you create additional burden to our planet by using or even wasting limited available resources and energy sources (fuel/electricity, etc). The higher your investment into high tech equipment in farming or any other production business, the more you are under pressure to produce more, sell more, earn more - without actually having more NET revenue at the end of all careful and precise calculation!!! Often the additional revenue from having the technology to produce more by using machines may be fully eaten up by all the additional cost for running and maintaining all the agriculture machines and all the financing burden. Ultimately you may work harder and longer hours just to pay all additional bills for a high tech farm. That above said results in an ideal size for all farms. That ideal size is what your entire family can do with bare manpower using proper TOOLS and a really reasonable minimal high tech equipment. All that really is needed is a farm style more in harmony with God's nature. To work WITH God's nature instead of against nature. To learn to let nature and God HELP you instead of fighting all bugs, insects, wildlife, herbs and trees on and around your farm. A farming style without any modern equipment may end up in a drop back into stone age lifestyle. Such development is NO reasonable development at all. Going back to all natural farming methods as done 5000 or more years ago is no goal for any organic farm at all. I give you a recent example where I experienced for a few weeks such a drop back into stone age lifestyle. 1999 at the very end of a 800km pilgrimage from near Munich to Assisi and later to the mountains of Sibillini (Italy) we (a sole survivor and me) finally ended at our planned final destination. way up in the mountains of Sibillini at a shepherds' place - a simple house with one room for all. Three old shepherds with some 1500 sheep together. We were sleeping in our 2 tents and welcomed by the shepherds. In exchange we did some house and home helping. One took care of the house inside. I went to nearby forest and cut firewood for a few weeks or months ahead. For all work there was one single tool! Some kind of machete. No ax, no saw, no hammer. Just one machete to cut the trees, to cut the death old trunks found into useful size to hand carry them out of the forest. For transportation I had a small old pushcart. barely suitable to transport wood long distance in the mountains. Hence most of the logs I had to shoulder carry home. That was faster and easier than using a pushcart which turns over or loses its cargo. That experience lasted some 3 weeks and showed once more that you may spend most or almost all day from early morning till sunset just working for the very basic needs for a small family home. Additional hours each day I spent searching the mountain fields and forests for the seasonal wild raspberries, some herbal tea and some wild herbs and plants suitable as vegetables or spinach (stinging nettle and others) or salad for out daily dinner when the 3 shepherds came home early
evening from their long treks feeding the sheep in the mountains far from our home. For a single man, there was no time for additional house repair and other work to improve lifestyle. Just a few weeks later the winter started in the mountains. Either you have all for the winter or you move down into warmer low areas or you starve all winter. That experience showed clearly that there can be too few tools for a comfortable happy lifestyle amidst your loved ones and a love hungry wife. A saw, an ax, a 4 wheel (push) cart and a few additional mechanical tools would have been most welcome to substantially speed up my daily work and create some free time for other improvements and work needed on a farm. I would have needed no machines at all, but a dozen or so additional quality tools. I love a physical workout in real life work. That makes me feel good at any age. City people pay lots of money to go to a gym, move/lift a few metric tons or more in an hour of workout - but by the end of their day they have achieved nothing at all. All weights are at the same place as at the beginning of their workout. Nothing has changed in their lives. No results have been created that improve OTHER people's life. A real farm work on a field creates healthy food for your entire family and provides additional food for up to dozens additional families. A city workout in a gym may make you feel tired - a farm workout for real production may make you feel GOOD and a little tired unless you have a loving wife taking care of your body after long working ours in the field or forest. We can buy equipment - but we never can buy nature once destroyed by equipment.
Purpose of farming is self sustainability for family needs The single most valuable benefit of a farm is to have abundance of food for your entire family. Self-sustaining life by means growing as much as reasonably possible of your own food needs is the primary purpose of farming. In no way was it ever intended by God that a few million farmers need to feed the entire rest of the world enjoying free evenings behind TV, computer or enjoy love life. If all people at least would maintain a garden quarter or half hectare in size, then most family members would stay in touch with nature and also engage in daily physical activity in your own garden to improve your overall health and thus reduce your medical problems and medical bills substantially. The secondary purpose of farming is to produce some - SOME - surplus to pay for or use in exchange for the few items you need from outside sources. A full self-sustainability is impossible unless you want to go back in time to stone age level. That in no way is intended. Progress is normal and natural. But most of your today's technical progress serves but profits and money making industries or worst above all high tech is developed primary for military purpose and only as additional purpose for private use.
How much self sustainability is reasonable There are plants and fruits that naturally grow on your soil and there are fruits, vegetables, herbs or salads that would only grow with lots of additional work such as modification of soil, artificial change of irrigation, artificial drainage of water and many other modification of the nature you have on your property. However if you study all available fruits, salads, vegetables and herbs from similar climate climate zones around the world, you may find sufficient food growing on exactly your soil as is. The best organic farming always is when you know how to use nature as is rather than to modify nature. A good idea is to travel in your country to different areas and see what other regions grow in similar weather, climate and soil conditions than your own farm. It is funny to see that many regions have same or very similar climate, yet grow totally different products. Often this is the result of doing what we always did and all our ancestors always did. Hence be progressive and have the courage to bring other plants and trees to your property even if in your province no one ever has done that before you. Be a pioneer and do things the very first time rather than copying others. The more versatile the overall farming of your community and community neighborhood, the more self sustaining is your whole community and thus the less dependent your community from outside world. A community with a large variety of food and other agriculture resources is stronger than a region with mostly monoculture! Leave wet land wet and dry land dry, leave sandy bottom sandy and clay or heavy soil as is. There are sufficient different plants and food sources that need exactly what you have on your property. Instead of changing your soil, optimize your soil. For example wet land may have an added pond or small rice field included. Dry land with sandy soil may be suitable for a large variety of healing herbs or fruits that love to grow on sandy dry soil. No matter how much efforts you invest into your farming, there always will be missing products for your daily life. Some may come from other farmers in your community. That makes others valuable as source for your family happiness and encourages communication and exchange of surplus among each other. Other products may need to come from far away. Like your steel tools coming from regions or countries with iron ore, with mines and a steel industry. Electric equipment also usually comes from far away and thus every farmer community may need to create surplus in food or farming products in exchange for other missing items from other regions. The more high tech gadgets you wish to use, the more surplus you have to produce in exchange for all your wishes.
Again here we encounter a situation of fine balance between real need for happiness and excess consumption of foreign goods that end us in an excessive dependency and possible financial imbalance.
Diversity of food produced depends on the choice or your land The diversity of food depends on diversity of soil conditions on your land. The diversity that can naturally grow on your property is a factor to consider when you first choose your farm land. If you inherit a farm from your father, then you just need to learn to make the best of a given situation. As soon as you stop thinking monoculture of one type of crop or plant for an entire piece of property or even several hectares, you find ideal conditions for many different veggies and fruits. Just have the courage to plant like jungle does. All beautiful wildly mixed. Thus allowing all plants and trees to enhance each other resulting in a strong dense culture of diverse food on a single hectare or peace of land. Walk trough your land from side to side, from corner to corner and look at the variety of soil and water or humidity conditions a single piece of land may offer. Then search for the ideal plants, herbs, veggies and fruits to grow together side by side to produce the largest possible natural and strong food diversity for your family needs and community needs. The picture shows pineapple plants amidst jungle like wild forest. Other fruit trees also have been added to the forest. That picture shows you that some plants need no land of their own but can easily be added to existing wild forest or jungle. Add to existing nature without destroying nature. Protect nature, care for nature and add to nature wherever nature leaves a free space for your own creative enhancement. Live and farm always integrated in nature. God created space for all; nature, wildlife and humans side by side.
Grow what loves your soil most at every corner of your property In an earlier picture you have seen a garden area of a small farm with a rather "poor" looking soil. On that picture you saw young calamansi trees, guava, papaya and many other plants useful for a family. On this picture you see the same property just some 10 meters toward the ocean with large water melon. The plant may look small, the soil definitely is dusty, sandy and very dry. Ground water is salty because that property is direct beach front and this watermelon just some 20 meters away from Pacific Ocean beach. Beautiful self sustaining farming in a most beautiful province in the Philippine islands. Far from nearest city. No electricity, no mobile phone signal. Such remote location of an entire community encourages and challenges all farmers to be as self sustaining as possible. With an ocean abundant with all kinds of marine life as food resource, land with beautiful hills and some jungle-like forest with integrated fruit trees and vegetables. An ideal location for a simple but truly happy life amidst a nature paradise. What does this remote community produce in exchange for goods needed from outside? A special sea grass produced for pharmaceutical industry! Have a look at the beauty of organic farming environment amidst untouched God made nature beauty and find inspiration and courage to go green and natural in your own farming as well. Below you find links with 100+ pictures from this beautiful agriculture community. Most of the pictures on the first several pages about happy children are made in that community. The smiling faces of the children show how happy a community can be without TV, without computer, without electricity, without phone lines ... Enjoy some wallpapers from island beach scenery and ocean view scenery from a remote corner of Bicol - a beautiful agriculture province several hours by boat from the nearest small city.
Uniqueness of your farming as an inspiration for your community You can be unique or a copier - God gave you creative power to be one of a kind. In life we have 2 choices. To be inspired by others and to our own thing or to copy others. When others are successful, then there is a reason. At the beginning there is one who acts as a pioneer testing new services or products. Instead of others now copying the same product and services as mostly done in our modern world, try to be inspired by others finding and creating something new and different from what others do! If a local farmer community copies each others farming style and farming products, then soon we have some kind of monoculture where most of the village produces one type of crops or plants or fruits. The opposite of jungle. That is the end of your biological balance in your community and the beginning of your problems. If a farmer community learns to be as unique and as diverse as reasonable possible, then the entire village community is a mixture of hundreds of agriculture products - like a agriculture jungle. Wile, beautiful and mixed. The more diverse your community production, the more more freedom you enjoy from outside supplies and the more enjoyable and healthier your life.
Self sustainability in farming as a powerful environment protection The more you produce locally, the less transportation is needed to complement your needs. The less transportation is needed, the less energy consumption you create and the less environment pollution you create. The benefits of mixed culture like a jungle is stronger nature, stronger health of all nature and of all humans and wildlife alike. The more a farming community resembles jungle like natural growth - the more different vitamins, minerals and herbal medicine you offer your own community and visiting guests. That helps to stay healthy and strong in nature and in all families living in your community. A diverse farm product market is a proof of quality of life created by your own community. Be an example - be different and encourage others to be different as well. The best encouragement for others is to be a different but successful example for others. The more different products your community of farmers produces, the less likely you need to "import" from other provinces or countries food for your village. There are many benefits for being as self sustainable as reasonably possible. One major impact is the strongly reduced need for transportation of goods to your village or regions. That reduced traffic into your province also substantially reduces environment pollution and waste of energy. Hence self sustainable farming as a farmer community is far more than an economical model but much more even an active contribution to environment protection!
Complement your plantation with suitable plants or trees Incomplete dragon fruit plantation - empty free space waiting to be used. In nature or jungle there rarely is any free space. If the soil is completely covered with any kind of growth, that protects the soil from being burnt and dried. In this picture with dragon fruits and several different fruit trees in the background we still have most of the space empty and available for additional plants. Either for food production or just as decoration. As additional decoration - considering that dragon fruits love dry soil, you could try small sunflower varieties. Sunflowers look pretty and by the end of the blossoming season, you have sunflower seeds for healthy food in muesli or as poultry food Another option could be to add watermelon plants. Watermelons love dry too. Hence from that irrigation point of view watermelon match basic needs of dragon fruits. Another possibility is to add plants that need limited irrigation that can be localized without drowning our dragon fruits. Example: Tomato, salads or vegetables. Alternatively you can grow a mixture of low crops, different flowers growing on dry soil or various herbs for seasoning of your cuisine. Many herbs love dry soil. Research what matches your climate zone.
Insects and bugs are God's helpers Insects and bugs, often falsely referred to as pest are God's helpers. Any attempt to destroy balance in nature is counteracted and rebalanced by nature. When ever humans lack a complete understanding of nature, mankind starts to interfere with nature and in the case of insects or bugs, killing nature by pesticide. Insects, bugs and other animals are true genuine helpers of God to re-establish or maintain natural balance where correction or adjustment is needed! A typical example is the coconut beetle killing coconut palms in the Visayas. A Philippine island region heavily over-farmed with coconut palms. Much or or most of the original jungle has been replaced by coconut palms. To the point where nature balance long time ago has been destroyed. God creates auto-adjustments in nature by creating trillions of animals, beetles, bugs and insects with no other duty but to maintain or reestablish God made natural balance to keep our living environment healthy and strong. The only problem is mankind's lack of understanding of God's creature on this very own planet. Instead of wasting trillions of dollars for completely useless and worthless space projects, an in depth understanding of our very own planet would be much more beneficial for all global economy and population. Any increased occurrence of nature "destroying" animals, bugs, insects, etc is but a warning that we have over-exploited nature and created too much monoculture within a region or country. Again - learning from Jungle would help mankind to understand the power of nature and the importance of a full natural mixture and density of vegetation all over the planet including farmland. Different insects are here to control each other and maintain balance among insects. Everything is made to absolute perfection. As long as humans stop to interfere with God made perfection by playing God. Learn the interaction between species and understand the duty and work of each and every animal on our planet. For example the cute ladybugs and many other insects eat up your aphidoids also known as plant lice and in some countries as greenflies, blackflies or whiteflies. However aphids are typically found on weak plants, on plant growing in wrong climate zones or wrong locations. Strong healthy plants easily survive the visit of aphids. Usually in a healthy ecological environment latest a few days after plant lice started to suck on some of your plants such as roses and other plants, the balance controlling insects come and eat all your plant lice within a day or two. Once I observed such an interaction of nature on my own roses. Instead of spraying pesticide or manually removing the dozens and hundreds of plant lice on my young rose buds, I just waited and after a day or two
some black flying insect about 1 cm long came to eat up all plant lice and a day later all plant lice were gone without any chemical or manual intervention. Nature has more than one controlling and rebalancing insect or animal to maintain a perfect balance in our ecological system. The main reason of the plant lice on my roses was a location in the garden with too little direct sunlight - causing roses to be weak and destined by nature to be replaced by something suitable for that precise location. In jungle strong nature survives because each plant, each shrub and each tree is exactly at the perfect spot with the most perfect energy balance surrounding each jungle plant or tree. There is no such thing as a pest but only misunderstood parts of nature and God's creation. Everything in God's nature makes a loving sense if you fully understand all aspects of God's creation. Even death of an animal, plant of human makes a most loving sense if you TRULY KNOW about God!
The damage of pesticide, herbicide and fungicide on our entire nature If you kill one part of God's creation, you also destroy the entire chain of auto-adjusting organisms in God's nature. Everything in nature has a precise purpose, a precise job to fulfill in God's nature. All animals, insects, bugs, plants, trees, weeds! The damage a pesticide for example does is far beyond your greatest possible imagination scenario. For example the use of pesticide to kill plant lice also may kill many other insects including bees, ladybugs, butterflies and all other insects useful in God's creation to maintain balance and work FOR us. Without bees and insects there may be no or much less pollination. The final result is a strongly reduced total harvest. In addition to a more and more polluted environment resulting in a more and more sick population! But the impact of chemical use in farming is nearly endless. More examples of damage resulting from pesticide, fungicide or herbicide are among others: Damage the trillions of micro organisms living on each square meter of soil to establish a healthy strong mulching process for natural fertilization of your plantation as well as a natural biodegrading of all waste products on your land. Whatever kills one part of nature also affects all other parts of nature as well. By adding chemical toxins to nature you always also pollute our breathing are, all our food products, all our groundwater we need for a healthy life. Ultimately all chemical toxins end up in our soil and groundwater. Eventually they flow into our creeks and rivers and end up in the oceans. Part of the toxins may evaporate and drop with out rain back into our life. Distributed all over our planet. Into all playgrounds of our beloved children and the gardens and parks of our homes and communities! The only "benefit" of pesticide, herbicide and fungicide or other chemicals used in agriculture is the financial benefit FOR the entire chemical industry. The very same companies that produce all highly toxic chemicals for agriculture that eventually makes our entire global population more and more ill - those very same companies also are among the world's largest pharmaceutical companies producing the medicine to "treat" the illness and damage directly or indirectly caused by their own toxins spread all over the planet's nature. For those chemical industries involved in both toxins for agriculture and pharmaceuticals for medical treatment, it always is a win win situation. The more toxins used in our modern society, households, agriculture and industrial plants, the more medicine is needed to counteract all ill-effects of chemicals - the larger
the profits. The picture shows a fully blossoming mango tree in a mango orchard near Kampot - Cambodia. When I recently visited that orchard, I immediately noticed that there are NO bees at all and no insect on the millions of mango flowers in bloom. I asked the owner and his answer was that they had bees and insects before and now since they use chemicals all insects - and also all bees are gone or killed. Then I explained him the relationship between harvest quantity and missing insects/bees as well as the health hazard such chemical toxin use represents for himself as well as his young daughter. I have been during fruit season 2009 on the same orchard and noticed that all those young strong mango trees have but few mango fruits ... In about 2 months I may be back to that very same orchard and see how this year's fruit harvest looks compared to last year.
How to find suitable plants or trees First step to find suitable plants or trees for your garden or farm always is to search in your own country for more diversity in your farming. Amazingly I have noticed that often a community or entire region is mostly copying from each other. That creates some kind of mass production of an entire region of thousands or more square kilometers producing same or similar one kind of product. Such copying each other will eventually always result in an imbalance in nature. Imbalance in nature results in sick trees, in bugs and insects killing trees to reestablish balance in nature. To find suitable trees, crops, plants, vegetables a visit or travel across your very own country may already reveal a real treasure on new opportunities for your own farm or community. I give an example seen in the Philippines. In the mountain village Sagada we have an excellent climate for a variety of fruits growing at moderate temperature such as central Europe or Mediterranean Sea and similar climate zones with day time temperature around 20-28 degrees Centigrade and night time mostly 15-20 C. Among a few exceptional agriculture products, Sagada is the origin of some of the finest oranges - tasty, juicy, delicious - even large: Also some smaller types of truly delicious mandarins. The very similar climate also is found on many other Philippines islands with high mountains of up to 2900+ meters above sea level. None of the other islands with high mountains however plants any of these citrus fruits in any suitable quantity. Even worst - if you look at my Sagada pictures, you rarely see any fruit trees at all. Most of this entire Sagada region is mostly unloved, uncared and partially empty unused agriculture land! The Sagada citrus fruits are sold only in Baguio because the quantity produced is far too small to reach into nearby large Philippine cities such as Angeles City or even Manila! Oranges and mandarins are very popular in the Philippines. The markets are full with large piles of imported oranges and mandarins from far away countries. The prices are the same as for local products. Farmers have failed to see that market demand and increase in a reasonable way their own local citrus fruit production. Many other poor island communities such as particularly Mindoro island and Mindanao island - both with high mountains far above 2000 meters above sea level could produce such citrus fruits for our local consumption in the Philippines. Producing locally reduces environment pollution. Consuming local products increases the strength of your local / national economy instead of increasing dependencies from remote foreign countries. Producing locally also creates new jobs in your local community or country for your own children and friends. Another similar situation exists in La Union - a Province some 300km
north of Manila on Luzon island. In Bauang there are a very few vineyards. May be a half a dozen farmers and just a few hectares total vineyard land produce some of the most delicious grapes I have eaten. I was born and grew up in a vineyard in my early childhood! Grapes are among the most popular fruits in the Philippine islands. The local markets have plenty of imported grapes. All local grapes seem to be imported from Chile! Then traveling across the entire Pacific Ocean to be sold on our local Philippine markets. There is nothing very special to the region of Bauang - sea level - tropical - hot like all other Philippine sea level provinces. Most likely there could be hundreds of other places in the Philippines that have a suitable soil/climate condition comparable to the one village in La Union to produce delicious grapes for the local market as well. You just need to try. Without trying there is no success! There is no need to produce for exportation. But at least produce for the saturation of your local and regional market in each agriculture province or island when ever reasonably possible! Another situation is the Baguio vegetable farming. In the Philippines most of the vegetables come from Baguio. More precisely from Benguet province outside Baguio toward Sagada. Radishes Sweet peas Tomato Lettuce Cabbage Cauliflower Asparagus Spinach and berries such as Blueberry Strawberry are but a few of the delicious vegetables growing in the mountains between Baguio and Sagada. Typically at an altitude of 1500-2000+ meters above sea level. The same conditions could be found on other islands with high mountains as well. But there also would be another solution to produce even more vegetables all around the Philippine island. In Cambodia we encounter almost the very same high tropical temperature, rain/dry seasons and other climate conditions than the Philippines at sea level. Cambodian farmers produce much of the same vegetables than Baguio vegetables, except that Cambodian farmers apparently have found or grown a vegetable variety that fully accepts hot tropical climate instead of moderate high altitude climate. An exchange of varieties between farmers in different countries with similar climate may enable farmers anywhere to grow more and better products and thus to achieve a higher profitability and more importantly
a higher self sustainability and better quality of life. If your climate grows strawberries - then you most likely also can grow other fruits and berries that have a same climate zone. Such as raspberries, cherries, plums, apples, pears, apricots, peaches, walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts, and many more! Travel your provinces, see what other farmers in other provinces grow. The ask for seedlings or seeds and try them at home. Study the exact conditions of that province. Humidity, sunshine, sunny side or shadow side, temperature range day/night summer/winter. If you have similar ranges at home - go for it and plant. There is nothing to lose but a lot to win. Always open your eyes, get seeds, ask from where agriculture products are. visit that region. Talk to farmers. Ask for seeds and advice. Then give it a try! The same when ever you travel into neighbor countries. An exchange of farmers' experiences between ASEAN countries could be most beneficial for all. Most countries I have seen during the past 35+ years in South East Asia have some agriculture products that also might grow in a neighbor country and thus improve livelihood of your neighbors or vice versa. Never expect your government to do that for you. You may die while waiting before a government does anything that brings no cash into government accounts. Always make your own steps toward a better future. Take the initiative to change your traditional planting range and be open for other natural products to grow on your farm or in your community. Always include your friends, neighbors or entire farmer community when thinking about what new food products you could grow at home. May be you have no ideal location or soil condition for a particular type but one of your other farmer friends may have precisely what is needed. Bring gifts for your community - we are but one family of love in God! May be some day one of your community friends brings something specially for your family farm from his travel for you. What goes round comes round. Whatever you do to others may be done to you. The law of karma. The picture shows a cashew tree with ripe cashew fruits. Amazingly I have never seen cashew fruits on local markets nor anyone eating cashew fruits except one single times when my cottage neighbors where smelling my delicious cashew fruits on my balcony. Usually the tasty, exotic and very juicy fruits are discarded right under the cashew trees and only the cashew nuts harvested.
The water purity is vital for all life The purity of water is sacred for all life. No matter the industry or profits, water always needs to be kept at the highest possible purity level. As a farmer we often are near the springs and origins from creeks and rivers. Hence a possible water pollution may start on our very own property depending on our own environment consciousness and farming style. Any chemicals used in farming sooner or later always flows into water or ground water and thus from that point on down river into the ocean and across all planet. The water that passes by a farm using any chemicals never ever will be safe for animals and humans again. Any animal farming always creates some sewage and animal waste that flows into creeks and rivers. Hence animal farming always is a source of water pollution no matter how careful you keep your animals. The difference between animal farming and wildlife is that wildlife is distributed across a huge nature area while animal farming always is an artificial and unnatural concentration of animal life and thus of animal waste. Nature can neutralize and absorb natural wildlife but never artificial mass farming waste. Keep in mind that whatever you do also may be copied by your neighbors. You keep a few water buffaloes and your neighbors a dozen pigs and your air and water never ever is safe again your very own children to play or drink. Any animal waste always creates a bacterial pollution of the water. Escherichia coli bacteria (E. coli) in water make your water dangerous for drinking and also dangerous for swimming. Swimming, specially extended exposure such as kids swimming and playing in contaminated water leads frequently to external ear infection. A common and most painful ear condition from polluted water, swimming pools and beach areas near river inlets or sewage inlets. Look at the beauty of the water shown in this picture! The last time I visited this very place for a bath. I took no drinking water with me - on purpose. I knew that either I get a coconut to drink or at the end of my day trip alone into nature, I may drink from this mountain river flowing down the high mountains on Mindoro island. Without coconuts on the way to my favorite mountain river place on Mindoro, I enjoyed the fresh and clean mountain water without filter. The river is clean and about 20 degrees C almost fresh in temperature. Imagine your rivers and creeks around your farm and downriver from your farm are as clean and safe as this beautiful river. A few kilometer downriver there are repeatedly water buffaloes living in the river. Hence from that point down into the ocean the water no longer is safe for drinking and people either need their own ground water well or drink bottled water.
Water, air and soil need to be kept clean for all people to enjoy health and beauty in nature. Polluted water never can create clean rain nor clean safe vegetables. All agriculture and food production starts with soil, water and air. We farmers are one possible source of pollution, the entire industry another even more dangerous part of our global environment pollution.
Reasonable self-sustainability vs full self sustainability in farming Reasonable self-sustainability in farming is easily achieved when you and all other farmers in your local farming community produce a full rage of fruits, berries, vegetables, salads and crops as reasonably possible. Reasonably possible means farming without having to change or refill soil, without artificial expensive irrigation systems, without additional heating, etc. In every tropical or subtropical zone a farmer and his neighbors of a small farming village or farmer community can very easily produce a large variety of all necessary food products necessary for a well balance and healthy diet. Many dozens of different vegetables. Dozens of fruits and much more can be produced any place in the world (except desert areas) - simply by selecting all suitable plants and trees for your local environment from among all globally available food plants and trees. As a farmer you are a business man. Look what your local population loves to eat or purchase on local fruit market. Then produce whatever is within your possibilities to satisfy the food likes and demand by your local community. Usually you may expect that within a range of approximately 10 kilometers around a village or community, all different soil and sun conditions can be found to produce whatever your local population needs for a healthy and happy life. Full self sustainability is a complex situation that is in no way intended by God. The reason is simple. People are made to learn to share, to exchange values and to communicate with each other. By leaving a small remaining need that you may have to get from abroad or from outside provinces, you need to communicate and establish honest business relationships to exchange what you have as surplus quality goods in exchange of your remaining important needs to be satisfied by remote sources. Full self sustainability however includes more than just food. That is where the limits of sustainability becomes apparent and other sources are needed. More on full self sustainability in next chapter. Picture below shows a common fruit/vegetable: Kondol - Winter melon, green pumpkin - Benincasa hispida
Full self-sustainability in life and farming is impossible Full self sustainability is simply impossible at reasonable costs and a happy and healthy lifestyle unless you return back to stone age methods and stone age lifestyle. Full self sustainability would include all such products or articles produced in your farm or local village community like: to produce locally all tools to produce cloths as well as all fabrics for clothing to produce locally all agriculture tools and agriculture machines to produce locally all metals needed for all tools and machinery to produce all medicine needed for healthy and happy lifestyle to produce locally all education material to have no radio/TV/Internet OR to produce all high tech equipment needed locally These above are but a few tiny needs beyond vegetables and fruits for your daily food need of your entire family. Thus it is vital to fully understand the difference between reasonable self-sustainability vs full self sustainability in farming and to fully understand how much self sustainability is reasonable. To produce all above limited list already is simply impossible. Unless you are willing to return back to stone age and work with stone tools, live in caves, work without any tools, be dressed with leaves or animal skins, ... To do so would simply be plain stupid. God's creation is made to progress. Progress however in no way means always high tech gadgets and even less that we need all in every household. Or even all multiple times in every household. Smart farmers create agriculture coops to share inventory of expensive heavy equipment. Smart people share expensive equipment with each other to share expenses and save resources provided by our planet. Progress always includes the need to be in full harmony with God's nature. That means we only can use, consume and create waste as much as we can locally or in our own home produce and biodegrade. For food we can easily achieve full self sustainability. For many of the tools partial. We may import raw material and have a local mechanic shop to convert raw material OR recycled local material into metal tools needed. Blacksmith work, carpenter work, construction work normally all can be done locally. Most of the material needed also can or should be found locally. There still may be accessories needed from outside. Wiring, bolts, screws, nails, water pipes, cooking pots, forks, knives, spoons, etc. Above all some most useful construction, agriculture and carpenter tools for our all daily work. Many of the raw materials - metals - needed to produce such tools or equipment comes from remote countries, from other continents. We may need to import raw steel but can easily convert all metals into the
varies tools in our own local farmer village. The dependency for such additional valuable resources makes us humble and forces us to be honest and loving in our business attempts to exchange needed products in exchange for out own valuable excess products of true value. Trade is a spiritual exercise to practice and prove honesty toward all others. In today's global economy we mostly abuse, exploit and cheat our trading partners. We give or receive a little bit of dirty paper money in exchange of days of hard labor! Most international trade serves but one single purpose. The profits of dealers, wholesalers and governments with related industries financing corrupt governments. There typically is NO benefit at all for all producing farmers and factory workers. Most of these outsourced work for a few dollars a day for large international trading companies making thousands or millions of dollars profits a day for shipping container loads or entire ship loads of cheap goods from "third world" countries into "first world" countries. The picture shows one of many locations that make it impossible to produce even all food products. But that village of course produces a large excess of aquaculture products including various vegetables growing in lakes as well as other food such as crocodiles, fish and other food for local trading in exchange for missing items.
Combine beauty with usefulness in your garden and farm Kondol is a common fruit/vegetable in the Philippines, in Cambodia and most likely many other tropical countries. A growing wine as beautiful green decoration on houses, a little later with beautiful yellow blossoms that later on convert into large edible fruits or vegetables. Many similar wine or plants grow beautiful fruits of vegetables while at the same time produce most beautiful exotic flowers. Another such example of useful beauty around your farm house is the passion fruit with beautiful passion fruit flowers before turning into an exotic tasting and most delicious passion fruit. Picture shows a Kondol also called winter melon or green pumpkin Benincasa hispida.
Less roads and limited transportation for a self sustaining farm life If your daily needs are produced locally, there are no needs for expensive road infrastructure. In a natural community most resources for living are locally produced in each farm and in the farm community. Hence little transportation is needed to and from outside. That self sustaining level is easily achievable and results in a very reduced need for large roads. Large roads are needed for all the large trucks bringing thousands of tons food and equipment in and out of communities each year. Hence wide roads are needed. To construct and maintain large road infrastructure even larger construction machines, bulldozers etc are needed. The end result is a nearly endless spiral increase of expenses to construct and maintain logistics and additional need for fuel and other energies. A community that is in itself mostly self sustaining in all daily needs and requires only limited resources from outside such as some tools and agriculture equipment may enjoy a far more beautiful nature. Walking from house to house instead of driving every little bit. I have been living and visiting many such communities without any roads toward the outside world. Either walking 3 hours across a jungle mountain or driving 2+ hrs by boat to another larger town. Nobody ever complained. The additional benefits besides very substantial savings in energy and tax money are a much better overall health of the entire population. All people walking in nature and working in a natural and clean environment leads to healthy old people still good looking and free from any ailments such as rheumatism, arthritis, obesity, etc. Many more benefits for a natural lifestyle in a reasonably self sustaining farmer community are very limited environment pollution. Much less or no engine noises. Limited or no trash, plastic, etc flying around. Important is to find a fine balance between a safe and comfortable life in full harmony with nature vs returning back to stone age hard living conditions or vs high tech life consuming more money and resources than produced benefits. What is the price for such a beautiful nature when walking to your neighbor or into nearby community center? Priceless just as much as the improved overall health of all people living in such a community is priceless!
Biodiversity as key to success in organic farms While many modern "organic farms" refer to farming without chemicals as biological farming, true organic farming or biological gardening requires biodiversity to be truly organic. Biodiversity as seen in jungle and wild forest has a much higher bio-productivity and bio density than all modern organic farms produce. Every single plant, shrub or tree is healing for either human, plant life, animals or the planet as a whole. True organic food only grows to its fullest biological potential of nutrition value and healing power if growing up in a God made rich environment. Thus it is a farmers basic duty and lesson to learn from jungle and wild nature how to create or maintain a full biodiversity A farm having 50 or hundred fruit trees of one kind within a few hectares never can enjoy the benefits of real biodiversity. If you look at wilderness and study jungle, then you rarely ever see one dozen of one kind of tree on a single hectare of wilderness. The only exceptions found may be desert and extreme altitude where only a few trees survive at all. In all fertile climate zones always are dozens or hundreds of different trees in a God made symbiosis with different trees, hundreds of different shrubs and thousands of different plants and flowers. The key benefit of biodiversity is a much higher bio productivity per hectare. A denser biomass obviously produces more beneficial assets for your planet than a typical monoculture farm. It is far more than just about productivity that can be converted into cash. Bio productivity is essential for your global climate, for our human health, for a well balanced nature itself in addition to strong healthy food products. All strong nature produces valuable assets for our planet. We just have failed to understand the value of nature yet. Without actually traveling and experiencing real biodiversity in jungle or wild forests, there is no way to really understand intellectually and in your heart the value and power of true God made nature for the benefit of all mankind and all planet. Go travel your country or other locations to personally experience wilderness and jungle before starting or changing your farm. Reasonable self sustainability requires biodiversity within each farm and each farmers' community.
Diversification of farm revenues to increase profitability Learn to add all your skills and knowledge to your farm activities to increase your profitability. Diversification of farm activities leads to increase of revenue and profits from a farm. An organic farm is a lifestyle rather than a job. The farming aspect is just one part of life, to produce healthy food for free and to offer a variety of activities for all family members. The limit of additional activities to create a solid and honest basis for needed revenue to support your family, community and enjoy a happy life is but in your own mind and own creative productivity. All you really need is true value skills that create real life benefits for others at affordable prices. Different members of your family may have different hobbies or skills that may be used to produce quality products as additional revenue in free time while enjoying to work. A list of such products includes: Wood carvings furniture or art Paintings Knitting Tailoring of custom made dresses Repair of mechanical items from watch repair to bicycle or motorized vehicle repair Electric engine rewinding or repair Electronic repair TV and Satellite antenna setup and repair Boat repair and boat building Carpenter work for others Flower plantation to supply flowers for local events such as weddings, etc Seminars and workshops related to live in nature, life on a farm, organic gardening, grafting, bee keeping, etc Healing seminars Therapeutic activities Giving music lessons Surfboard production of custom made boards for surfing and windsurfing Publishing and web publishing Online teaching and video lessons Remote server control and server management work Guided nature walks to conduct workshops on healing herbs, production of flower essences, production of massage oils, etc Nature and outdoor activities such as adventure camps, river rafting, nature observation, etc Nature photography workshops Web design and SEO workshops Guest rooms or a little guest house for weekend or vacation on a farm Campground for visitors wishing to live in a tent while enjoying vacation on farm All these are but a few examples of most valuable revenue sources
available to farmers. The full potential only depends on your true life qualifications and expertise. A farmer above all also has a right to a decent revenue in exchange for feeding the world. Honest prices need to be paid by farm customers and consumers of farming products to allow all farmers a happy family life with the opportunity to have a vacation and to enjoy recreation and fun time as well. Most farmers during the course of decades working and living on a farm are true experts in many fields without ever charging expert prices such as city people and white collar jobs do. The most valuable of all, besides happiness and love, is healthy food and a healthy nature. Farming is the source of both as a farmer also is maintaining God made nature for all world.
Add beauty and diversity to your farm Add beauty and diversity to your farm. Add attraction that pleases the heart and soul for visitors, quests and all your family. Add a beautiful water lily or lotus flower pond with beautiful aquatic life, flowers and fishes. Certain water lilies can be used as delicious vegetable, lotus roots too have great nutritional value in addition to the large lotus seeds or the lotus tea made of fresh lotus petals. Nature itself when cared with love is a treasure for herbal medicine and delicious and healthy food products and adventures all at once. Open for God and accept God^s inspiration for new ideas beyond your traditional farming style. If you need to dig (by hand of course) water channels to irrigate your farm land, who says such water channels need to be straight or cemented? Be creative, convert the useful into beauty by adding water flowers, water lilies or lotus flowers to the irrigation channels and add some fish to convert all artificial water into beautiful ponds. To be useful and beautiful at the same time.
Nature beauty is delicious A farm is a place to be happy and thus needs beauty. Bautiful flowers or trees may at the very same time be food or love for eyes and soul, but also be delicious to eat. In Cambodia this abundant purple water lily is used as decoration in villages and around farms but also consumed as delicious vegetable. The flower stem without the flower is used as vegetable for chop suey, soups and similar dishes. May be no vegetable for every day, but once every now and then the water lily adds to the diversity of your exotic gourmet kitchen for family and friends.
Lifestyle of the future - all are part time farmers Modern farming of the future may include non-farming products or services as added value and additional revenue sources vs our old fashioned farmer only style. A modern organic farm gives far less work than conventional cattle or animal farming. The time and work saving can be used for additional quality family time for love and happiness with loved ones, family and friends. Humans love to be active and creative. Free time and free creative potential while living in a natural farming environment may also be converted into creativity and productivity of services or products you and your family loves to do. An ideal situation for all mankind on earth would be all having a small farm or large garden to supply most of daily food needs for your entire family. Depending on your additional non-farming activities, some may have more farm production and less non-farming activities. May be a medical doctor may spend just enough time in his garden to recover from his patients and to enjoy nature. Thus he may have a smaller piece of land. A boat builder producing one boat a month for his fishing village may be in a similar situation. Others may add more land to produce more work or time intense crops or fruits, construction wood or goods for his community. The ideal situation allows all to enjoy life without having to carry the burden of feeding the world without fun in life as it is the case in today's industrial type mass production farming world. When more or less all families produce most of their daily food needs, then all industrial mass production farming practiced these years becomes obsolete. That will make all chemicals, energy and most of the agriculture machines obsolete as well. Conventional family style farming for home supply needs no machines and may be done on small land all managed in a fully biological way in harmony with nature.
The multitude of many small things add up to true quality of life Learn to add whatever is missing in others life and make yourself a valuable source of extra ordinary items to add real quality to life. Imagine a life without the many small yet simple and affordable products and services. True organic farming needs to include all those small jewels that turn our life into happiness. Smart farming includes a variety of fruits, berries and herbs needed to turn food into a healing pleasure for all. Every household should have all the basic ingredients for healthy food in the garden. What precisely of course depends on your climate and soil. Make full use of all the natural resources, all all God gives you into your garden to turn your garden into a source of delicacies for all. Look and feel into the household of your community. What is missing, what do others need, what adds quality of life to others, what makes others lives more delicious, healthier. Look into the botanical world across the planet and see what you can add to your own garden or farm to contribute true value to your community.