Crop rotation is important for any farmer. Whether you have fields and fields of crops or a small plot, you need to understand the importance of crop rotation. Like many things we do in homesteading, this too serves a purpose. It’s a tried and true tradition passed down through the family lineage of farmers because it works! What exactly is crop rotation? On a very basic level, crop rotation is moving plant families from one bed to the next each planting season. If you aren’t
Did you know plants have families? We didn’t either when we first started gardening. We won’t get into the science too deeply because it really does go on and on…and on. But knowing your plants and who is in what family makes it easier to lay out your garden beds. Generally speaking you want to plant like minded plants together. Now don’t confuse this with companion planting. While they have some similarities, plant families are more about which plants are related and not just about
Everyone has a different growing season depending on where they live. You’ll find most seed catalogs mark the growing season by zones. First, find your zone to calculate your growing season. A zone indicates which plants will thrive in your area. Certain plants won’t thrive in a southern heat, so it’s important to know what zone certain plants do well in, so you don’t purchase a plant that can’t grow in your area. In Arkansas, we are in zone 7-8. Which means we have hot,
There are so many plant varieties on the market. Sure, you may know that you want to plant tomatoes, but have you thought about what type of tomato? A beef steak tomato, a roma tomato, variegated, yellow or red are all different plant varieties. And that doesn’t even put a dent in your choices. Each type of plant, whether it’s corn, green beans, squash, etc., all have different plant varieties to choose from. How do you know which plant varieties you need for your garden?
Planning a spring garden can an overwhelming task. Where do you put your garden? How much space do you need? What do you plant? These are all questions we had when we began our garden four years ago. We learn as we go, but if y’all can learn from our mistakes you’ll be ahead of the curve. Whether you have a spring garden or are starting from scratch planning begins now! Every January we get out our notebooks, seed catalogs and look at our plot.
When fall and winter hits, there are a number of ailments that afflict chickens. Chicken combs are easily affected by cold, dry temperatures. Up north, chickens struggle with frostbite on their combs and wattles. Down here in the south, we struggle with frostbite too, but not every winter, as our winters are typically milder. We get snow from time to time, but not every winter. And more often than not, we get ice. Our trees droop from the weight of ice on their branches. The
Ornamental chicken breeds are some of the most beautiful birds. They often have wild colorful plumage and quirky personalities. These chickens are called ornamentals because they often lay small eggs and have a much lower egg-laying rate than typical for chickens. Ornamental chicken breeds are known for having the most froo-froo feathers on the head, feet, and body. They are fun birds to own! These chickens make great pets. Depending on the breed their feathers may not keep them warm in cold climates and so
Dual purpose chicken breeds are exactly that. They serve two purposes. They typically have a great egg laying rate and are large enough birds to be used for meat when they are past their egg-laying prime. Most hens will lay solid for approximately two to three years. After that, their laying rate slows to about one egg a week until they stop laying completely. Dual purpose chicken breeds are our favorite chickens! First, peruse the list below and determine which breed will meet your needs.
Egg layer chicken breeds are unique. You wouldn’t think that would be the case. After all, don’t all chickens lay eggs? Well, you’re right on that note, but if you are looking for a chicken breed that gives you a lot of eggs it’s important to know which breeds lay the most. Egg layer chicken breeds lay a minimum of 150 eggs a year! There are SO many breeds out there guys! Those no way we can cover them all in this article, so we
Meat chicken breeds are not technically a classification. But we like to say it is so because in our minds it helps us keep straight the purpose of our birds. If you have read through our previous articles on choosing chicken breeds, you’ll have learned we talk about the four main purposes for chickens. Those purposes are only meat chicken birds, only egg layers, dual-purpose birds and ornamental chickens. As we walk you through each of these categories, you’ll see we listed specific breeds for