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Old 03-12-2009, 10:28 AM
 
93 posts, read 227,577 times
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Thanks for the replies.

I'm taken aback that 5 acres is considered to be merely "a lawn". The suburban house and garden that I currently live in is 0.25ac and I always considered my garden to be "regular sized". What would you call 10 or 40 acres ?
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Old 03-12-2009, 02:28 PM
 
Location: The Woods
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skippy upwood View Post
Thanks for the replies.

I'm taken aback that 5 acres is considered to be merely "a lawn". The suburban house and garden that I currently live in is 0.25ac and I always considered my garden to be "regular sized". What would you call 10 or 40 acres ?
The problem is partially due to location and climate. 5 acres in AZ will tend to support less than, say, 5 acres in the midwest, though even there it wouldn't be enough to fully support much livestock without buying a lot of feed.
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Old 03-12-2009, 03:03 PM
 
Location: The Rock!
2,370 posts, read 7,051,976 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skippy upwood View Post
Thanks for the replies.

I'm taken aback that 5 acres is considered to be merely "a lawn". The suburban house and garden that I currently live in is 0.25ac and I always considered my garden to be "regular sized". What would you call 10 or 40 acres ?
10-40 acres is a farmette. I grew up on over 200 acres with round about 80-100 head of cattle. Some of our neighbors had land in the range of 1000 acres. At one point, we had 2 gardens, one for corn and some peanuts at one point that was about .25 acre and our typical garden with all the standard range of vegetables that was just a tiny bit smaller than the first. We also had about a .5 acre orchard. We had about 50-60 acres devoted to hay production for the better part of the year and rented another 100 or so acre parcel to have access to some prime bottom land for more hay. Even with all that, it was just a hobby farm, never turned any profit.

For a newcomer to farming, 5 acres is a fine enough start. Just enough to get your feet but not so much as to be horribly burdensome and scare you out of it. Get you a dozen or so chickens and put in a nice sized garden if the land will support it.
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Old 03-12-2009, 06:52 PM
 
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The problem in my area is everybody thinks if they have a couple acres of grass that isn't lawn, they need cattle.

They get a few head and after a month ( or less) they have to buy hay to keep them.

Usually, the following year they just make a bigger lawn or plant trees.
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Old 03-16-2009, 01:21 AM
 
Location: Way on the outskirts of LA LA land.
3,040 posts, read 10,536,245 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skippy upwood View Post
Thanks for the replies.

I'm taken aback that 5 acres is considered to be merely "a lawn". The suburban house and garden that I currently live in is 0.25ac and I always considered my garden to be "regular sized". What would you call 10 or 40 acres ?
5 acres, particularly in most parts of northern Arizona will not support much in the way of livestock. As others have said, you will need to supply feed if you plan to have any large animals. Much of the western U.S. is the same way. 5 acres, even if fully irrigated, might possibly be enough land to raise feed for one or two animals, but that isn't likely in your location.

Generally, that is only enough land for a small hobby farm. Large enough to keep a few animals, a reasonable vegetable garden, a home, and possibly a barn and some fruit trees. The animals would have to be fed from an external supply, which shouldn't be too hard to come by in the area. If this is the type of thing you have in mind, then five acres should suit you just fine, as long as you have a reliable source of water.
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Old 03-16-2009, 09:53 AM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
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Water is an extremely important resource. Close to the surface, where you are not expending a lot of energy pumping it, and in great quantity.

Then how fertile is the soil?

The arid deserts of Central California, after flood irrigation became available still took 20 years to build fertile soils. And many farmers never did.

If your starting with arid soil, it likely does not have much organic material in it. Not much 'life'.

Much Federal land is rated to carry 1 cow per every 40 acres.

If you can flood irrigate with a foot/acre of water every two weeks, and grow legumes to build the soil, then after 5 years you might be able to begin putting livestock on it. But only for a part of each year, and you would still need to supplement feed.

Good luck!
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Old 03-21-2009, 05:30 PM
 
Location: Tucson AZ & Leipzig, Germany
2,616 posts, read 7,921,180 times
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I've been to Winslow many times while driving across northern AZ on I-40. It's located about a mile above sea level on a high plateau below and east of Flagstaff. It is an arid, often windy area with no rivers or significant lakes nearby. Very little natural vegetation and no trees. The surrounding desert is rocky with mostly scrub brush growing. Water in northern AZ is generally scarce and if you don't have a proven well and the water rights to use the water, the land would be of little use. I can't recall seeing crops of any kind in the area. This would not be a good place to try and live off the land.
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Old 03-22-2009, 01:17 PM
 
Location: Oklahoma(formerly SoCalif) Originally Mich,
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We're talking about the "Majove desert" here.

Last edited by mkfarnam; 03-22-2009 at 01:26 PM..
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Old 03-22-2009, 02:31 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
31,146 posts, read 50,314,105 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkfarnam View Post
We're talking about the "Majove desert" here.
Some take the word desert to have specific meanings.
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Old 03-22-2009, 04:29 PM
 
Location: Oklahoma(formerly SoCalif) Originally Mich,
13,387 posts, read 16,962,646 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by forest beekeeper View Post
Some take the word desert to have specific meanings.
I lived in SoCal(San Bernardino County)36 years, which is also in the Majove Desert.
Containing hot, dry land unfit for farming
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