You can get so much information by just listening. Check out these amazing podcasts on farming, homesteading and growing food.
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Learning to Farm
Or homestead or farmstead. Really it depends on your end goal, do you want to sell what you produce off of your own land? If so, you are or will be entering into the vast open field of farming. This can include value added products like goat milk soap that is made from animals you raise as well as direct products like vegetables.
If you did not grow up farming or are new to the field, you might be overwhelmed by all the information out there. Learning how to farm with free resources from places such as YouTube, podcasts, books, workshops, conferences and apprenticeships is one way to get into the field without the formal investment of a typical 4 year degree from a university.
Listening to explore
The truly wonderful thing about learning to farm (flower, vegetables or animals) with podcasts is that the tend not to cover different facets of the field within a particular topic. For example, say you are interested in starting a cut flower farm. You can listen to a few different episodes from a podcast and not only learn about the basics of cut flower farming but also the pros/cons to no-till, common pests for dahlias, etc.
I have found in these podcasts that there is often a subject or idea that comes up and I write it down to dive in deeper later. The more specific information you can get from various sources, the more that will help you when a problem arises. This is especially helpful if you are limited in your ability to network, which became a major issue during the covid19 pandemic.
My favorite farming podcasts
- No-Till Market Garden
- Farm Small Farm Smart
- Farm Land
- In Search of Soil
- The Permaculture Podcast
- The Rural Woman Podcast
- Farming without the Bank
- A Better Way to Farm
Information You Can Use
Growing food for a living is complex, variable and passionate enterprise that many people enjoy. Because of big agriculture and subsidies the landscape has changed. The average age of the American farmer is over 50. All of this information can help you get started today, even without a formal education in the field.
If you are interested in market gardening, no-till gardening, organic, sustainable growing food, these podcasts can help you. You can learn a to about the nuts and bolts of running a business in agriculture. This includes what you need to know about managing a small team, working with vendors, talking to customers, product and the amount of land.
More information is available
Key tip for learning as much about this as possible. You can get many, many books for free online, through your local library. If you want to get some inspiration, you can find out about my favorite audiobooks here. You can also look up Hoopla and Libby, both of these platforms use your library card information. You can get textbooks, documentaries, audiobooks and more.
If you are more interested in overall homesteading, including growing food, food preservation, livestock, sewing, knitting, DIY and crafting, there are 11 homesteading books you should check out. These will also cover some of the basics to starting a mini farm to feed you and your family.