We are a natural and sustainable 6 acre farm in NE Georgia. We started in 2012 and are trying to transform a plot of grass and weeds into a vibrant and productive farm.
We primarily use food forests, raised beds and POS (Point of Service) farming to grow our plants. This is not your typical farm! No synthetic fertilizers or pesticides around here.

Zucchini Everywhere!

I see zucchini - zucchini everywhere!

If you have ever grown zucchini, you know what I am talking about. In an effort to not have them go to waste, I am highlighting some recipes in which zucchini can be used.

Zucchini Fries

Black Beans and Zucchini Quesadillas

Zucchini Oven Chips

Garden Vegetable Crustless Quiche

New Chickens

We've had 8 Dominique chickens (2 roosters & 6 hen) for several months now and decided we wanted to add to our flock so that we will have enough eggs for ourselves and to sell. 

Our ultimate goal is to have the perfect mutt chicken so we got several different breeds this time with the idea that since our only roosters are Dominiques any future chickens will always have at least a little Dominique in them.

This time we got 5 pullets of each of these -
Rhode Island Red
Black Australorp
White Leghorn
Cuckoo Maran
Easter Eggers

We used efowl.com which is the best site we've found for buying day old chicks.

Here are descriptions of all our breeds taken straight from the efowl website -
Dominique - The Dominique Chicken is the oldest American chicken, developed in New England sometime during colonization of North America. The Dominique Chicken remained the most popular American Breed until the development of the Barred Plymouth Rock in the mid 19th century.

The Dominique Chicken is a calm and gentle bird that can be easy to show. It's docile temperament makes for great layers and good family or backyard birds. The Dominique Hens are dependable and hardly layers of medium sized brown eggs. The roosters occasionally tend to act aggressively toward humans or other roosters. The Dominique Chicken is a good looking bird with black and creamy white barred plumage patterns. The barring is more staggered and less parallel than the plumage of the Barred Plymouth Rock. The Dominique Chicken has a bright red rose comb with bright red wattles and ear lobes.

Overall, the Dominique Chicken is a beautiful chicken breed that will dependably produce eggs in marginal weather. The birds' plumage pattern, also known as "hawk coloring", offers some protection against some aerial predators, helping the bird survive in backyard free range environments. The Dominique Chicken will also dress nicely and produce quality tasting meat.

  • Adult Weight - Male: 7 pounds; Female: 5 pounds
  • Color - Black and Creamy White barred plumage pattern
  • Purpose - Dual Purpose: Meat and Eggs
  • Egg Production - Good
  • Egg Color - Brown
  • Region of Origin -United States
Rhode Island Red - The Rhode Island Red Chicken Breed boasts the title of America's most well known and popular chicken, though for many years the chicken breed was facing a critical decline in its breeding population. Thanks to many hobby hatcheries and backyard farmers the Rhode Island Red is now popular chickens among small farms and backyards today. Rhode Island Red Chicks grow to be one of the most productive and useful dual purpose breeds across the country and world today. They have prolific egg production, and they will dress nicely as a table bird.

The Rhode Island Red is also one of the most hardy of all dual purpose breeds, and they will thrive in almost any environment they could face in the United States. They have amenable dispositions and are a favorite among 4-H clubs and state fair competitions around the country. Their active disposition, hardy nature, and superb foraging ability helps them thrive in a free range environment as well.

Though the breed has become smaller over the last 60 years, they females still weigh over 6 pounds while the males over 8 pounds. The Rhode Island Red Hens are excellent winter egg layers due to their heavier size and hardiness, and they will generally lay between 200-300 per year - perhaps the best dual purpose egg layer in production today. The hens can become broody, though not as frequently as some other breeds like the Buff Orpington. Roosters can become aggressive, and it is generally best not to have more than one rooster for every 8 - 10 hens.

  • Adult Weight - Male: 8 pounds ; Female: 5.5-6.5 pounds
  • Color - Black and Dark Red (may have some white tipped feathers prior to full maturity is reached), Yellow Skin, Red or Rose colored Crests
  • Purpose - Dual Purpose: egg laying and meat production
  • Egg Color - Brown
  • Egg Production - Prolific: 200 - 280 eggs per year (varies depending on conditions)
  • Country of Origin -United States (Rhode Island)
  • Broodiness - Sometimes Broody
  • Comb - Single

Black Australorp - A champion egg-laying chicken breed, the Black Australorp was introduced to the United States around the 1920s. The Australorp was originally developed in Australia from the Orpington Chicken to create a breed with a higher quality egg production without sacrificing too much size and meat quality. This breed is now a competitive contender for one of the most popular "backyard chicken" breeds as well as the most productive egg laying breed.
The Black Australorp Chicken is extremely hardy in most climates and can easily compete as one of the best layers of brown eggs among the heavy chicken breeds. Similar to the Buff Orpington Chickens, these birds are calm and docile, easily handled, and bear confinement with no problem.
Black Australorps are just slightly smaller than the Orpington but the males can still weigh in around 8.5 pounds. The relatively large size and pinkish white skin help this bird to dress nicely once the chicken develops its full plumage. This heavy bird is covered in glossy black iridescent plumage that has a greenish purple tint in the sunlight, and a whole flock of Australorps paints a strikingly attractive backyard scene. The Australorp is an excellent dual purpose chicken that can greatly be utilized in confined backyard environments as well as more open farm coops.

  • Adult Weight - Male: 8.5 pounds ; Female: 7.5 pounds
  • Color - Black with greenish purple sheen, Large red comb
  • Purpose - Dual Purpose - Egg Laying and Meat Production
  • Egg Production - Prolific: 250+ per year
  • Egg Color - Brown
  • Country of Origin -Australia

White Leghorn - The White Leghorn Chicken is the most popular breed of white egg laying chickens. They are the most popular commercial strain of white egg layers in the entire world. The Leghorn Chicken originated in Italy and was first brought to North America in the 1850s under the name Italian chickens. They name Leghorn came from a mispronunciation of the sea in which they were frequently transported through called the Ligurian Sea.
Leghorn Chickens will lay an astounding 280 large white eggs per year. This breed will mature rapidly, reaching a maximum weight of 3-4 pounds for hens and 4-6 pounds for roosters, and they are not considered a viable option for meat production. These birds tend to be flighty and generally avoid human contact. Leghorns enjoy free range environments, but they are adaptable to confined living as well.
The Leghorn is a vocal and active bird as well as an excellent forager. They can quickly convert their food intake into energy and require little physical maintenance. These chickens are excellent fliers and will roost in trees if they are raised as free range birds.

  • Adult Weight - Male: 5-6 pounds ; Female: 3-4 pounds
  • Color - White
  • Egg Production - Prolific
  • Egg Size - Large
  • Egg Color - White
  • Country of Origin -Italy

Cuckoo Maran - Cuckoo Marans Chickens is a fairly rare and desirable breed because of it's rich chocolate brown egg color. The Marans Chicken Breed is named for the French town of Marans in the region in which the breed originated. Originally a feather legged breed, a clean legged variety of the Cuckoo Marans was eventually developed in England by breeding it with certain French and English Breeds.
The Cuckoo Marans is a dual purpose breed that is primarily bred and raised for it's unique egg color. This heavy breed will produce on average between 150-200 eggs per year, and they can grow large enough to be used for meat as well as eggs. They are a fast growing and extremely hardy that will thrive in most climates. The feather pattern of the Cuckoo Marans is a striking and beautiful barred black and white pattern, similar to that of the Barred Plymouth Rock Chicken.
If you're looking for a rare and unique variety to the color of your eggs, you should consider adding the Cuckoo Marans to your flock. Our breeders have invested over 12 years in developing the bloodlines of this rare and prestigious chocolate egg laying chicken breed.

  • Adult Weight - Male: 7-8 pounds ; Female: 6 pounds
  • Color - Both males and females have irregular barred plumage (known as Cuckoo), similar to that of the Barred Rock.
  • Egg Production - Very Good (200+ per year)
  • Egg Size - Medium to Large
  • Egg Color - Dark Reddish Brown
  • Country of Origin -France

Easter Eggers - Our festive and lively Easter Egger Chicken is also commonly referred to as the Ameraucana. The Ameraucana Chicken Breed is recognized bye the APA in many different color variations. While our Ameraucana Chickens do hold true to the qualities and characteristics recognized by the APA, we do not breed specifically for any particular color and offer a "mixed color" variety, nor do we guarantee any particular colors or color variations of this breed. For this reason, we advertise our Ameraucana Chickens as Easter Eggers.
The Ameraucana breed is very popular for its distinctive appearance and its unique egg coloration which ranges from bright blue, green, turquoise, deep olive, and rarely to a light brown or pink. Ameraucana Chickens have exciting appearances from the chick stage all the way through maturity. They have beards underneath their beaks and muffs around their cheeks, making them one of the most distinctive breeds of chickens available. These facial features give them an appearance similar to a chipmunk.
Our Easter Egger Chickens are bred specifically to be excellent egg layers of the blueish green eggs. In addition to substantial egg production, their hardiness and robustness allows them to be quite adaptable to a wide variety of environments. This makes them a go-to breed for people looking to raise exciting birds at all levels of breeding skill. Though we do breed and sell a "mixed color" variety of Ameraucana, it is possible you will get a solid or recognized color variety that can compete in poultry shows. If you are looking for a fun breed that will be the subject of much conversation and enjoyment, the Ameracauna Chicken is for you.

  • Adult Weight - Male: 5 pounds ; Female: 4 pounds
  • Color - Mixed Colors, and Gray, Pea Shaped combs, White Skin
  • Egg Production - Prolific
  • Egg Size - Medium/Large
  • Egg Color - Many colors and Shades including Blue, Green, Turquoise, Olive, and Light Brown or Pink
  • Country of Origin -United States

Time for a New Hoe

Yes, I have to admit it, we have weeds on the farm. And I am finally breaking down and getting this Corona Clipper SH63000 Heavy-Duty Weeding Hoe to deal with them. Hopefully it works well.

We Like Invasive Plants! (No really, we do)

Most farmers don't like plants that are listed/called "invasive", but as usual, things are different here on our farm.

Not only do we like invasives but we go out of our way to acquire them and plant them around the farm. Here is a growing (hopefully) list of invasive plants on our property.

Planted by us - 
Autumn Olive
Walking Onions

Not originally planted by us but definitely encouraged to grow - 

If you have any invasive plants and want to get rid of them, you can always bring them to us. We'll gladly take them off your hands.

Sunchokes aka Jerusalem Artichokes


The ultimate survival food?

The sunchokes below were harvested in the dead of winter.

There aren't a lot of crops that can sit in the ground for several months while I wait to harvest them. These specific tubers probably were ready for harvesting in Sept/Oct but were actually taken out of the ground on Jan 21st.

We ate the above sunchokes but made sure to plant a whole bunch of them around the farm. Most of them were put in raised beds and in the ground (yes, we like invasive stuff!) but we also wanted to experiment with them in buckets. These popped out of the soil at the very beginning of April.
Assuming nothing bad happens to them (and very few things cause problems with sunchokes) these will be beautiful 6 feet tall sunflowery type plants in a few months.


How Many Plants Can You Fit Per Acre?

It is easy to forget how big an acre of land is. In planning for planting I often find it useful to think about how many plants I can fit in an acre of land with a given spacing.

Plants per Acre Table

         Number of Plants

Distance Apart

3 in x 3 in 696,960

4 x 4 392,040

6 x 6 174,240

9 x 9 77,440

1 x 1 feet 43,560

2 x 1 21,780

2 x 2 10,890

3 x 1 14,620

3 x 2 7,260

3 x 3 4,840

4 x 4 2,722

5 x 5 1,742

6 x 6 1,210

7 x 7 881

8 x 8 680

9 x 9 537

10 x 10 453

15 x 15 193

20 x 20 108

30 x 30 48

40 x 40 27

Here is an example of how we'd use this chart on the farm. We plan on using half of our land to support the other half by growing compost crops on it. If we were to use comfrey as the only plant for the support section we would need 3 acres of comfrey. If we planted it with 3 x 3 foot spacing we would need to have 14520 comfrey plants on the property. (That's a lot of comfrey!)

If we were planting large trees that needed significant spacing like pecans we might use the 40 x 40 foot spacing which would give us only 27 trees per acre. We won't be, but if we did, we could plant something small like carrots with the 3 in x 3 in spacing and have almost 700,000 carrots per acre!

Does Comfrey Need TLC?

Comfrey is an incredibly robust plant but giving it some love just makes it produce even more. Here are comfrey plants that were all planted at the same time (6 months ago) and are only a few feet away from each other. They were all started from Bocking 14 root cuttings.

This root was planted in poor soil (hard, crusty clay) and not given any attention. After 6 months all it has produced is 2 little leaves. If I had given it any attention - extra moisture/nitrogen/mulching it probably would be thriving just like my other plants.
Just a few feet away is another plant that is in better soil but still didn't receive any extra attention. Several leaves and growing well but nothing amazing.
And finally these plants were planted in a low lying area that receives significant moisture and nutrient run off. They are only 6 months old but easily look like plants that are a couple of years old.
So to answer the question - does comfrey need TLC? Yes and no. If you just want some comfrey to grow and don't need leaves immediately, then putting it anywhere will do. However, if you want to see all that comfrey can do then you'll need to put it somewhere nice. A perfect place can be downhill from a compost pile. It will receive nutrients that runoff the pile and will put on significant growth in no time.

Comfrey as Mulch

Using comfrey as a mulch in your garden/farm is a great idea depending on your needs.  If you are looking for a mulch that can start feeding your crops really quickly, this is your answer. The leaves of the plant are low in fiber so it breaks down quickly after mulching with it. Depending on several factors, it can easily decompose within days providing nutrients to the soil underneath it.

For mulching with comfrey there are 3 options all of which have big benefits.

Move to location – This simply involves cutting the leaves off a comfrey plant (or harvesting the entire plant) and using them as mulch elsewhere. This is what we do for our raised beds on the farm. We have a comfrey patch that is near the beds, and when needed, we cut off leaves and bring them up to the bed. A small patch can be used to mulch a rather large raised bed.

 This is one of our <1-year-old comfrey patches used for that purpose - 
Once established this patch can produce a ton (yes, 2000 pounds!) of comfrey leaves a year. 

Chop and Drop – If you've planted your comfrey plants near (within the drip zone) the trees you want to fertilize you can simply cut off the comfrey leaves where they are and leave them. Almost as easy as possible.

Let die in winter – As easy as possible. Again for comfrey that has been planted near trees you can simply let the comfrey die back each winter fertilizing the ground around the plant. You don't get as much mulch as you would if you cut it back a couple of times during the year, but it requires absolutely no work. Some call it lazy, I call it being efficient. 
Here is comfrey as it begins to die back during winter. The dead leaves are very dark in color which makes the soil darker as it enriches it. - 

We Love Comfrey!

Comfrey is our favorite and most important plant on the farm.

We grow more comfrey than any other plant number wise and space wise. We currently have about 1000 plants and hope to eventually have over 5000.
Books have been written about this amazing herb over the years so I obviously won't be including all of that information here. I do want to highlight some of comfrey's most positive features so that everyone can understand how great of a plant this is.