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Discussion Starter #1
Hi there! I'm new here officially, but I've used the forum a few times to look up answers to a few questions I've had. So, since my significant other and I just bought a house and are closing on it in less than a month, I thought I'd have more questions and so I made an account here! :D

So, I myself am a graduate student at UF hoping to go into the veterinary medicine program, while my SO is a nurse at a local hospital where he later hopes to go through school to further his career. So while we are not at school/work, this is going to be our primary project! We have both always wanted to get a farm, so it's very exciting work for both of us.

The house we just purchased in on approximately 5 acres, all of which is fenced (but yet to be inspected due to overgrowth) with what appears to be a welded wire but we haven't inspected it very closely. We are planning on clearing the property's undergrowth as soon as we can to inspect further.

There is one small pen currently on the property with a lean-to style shelter that we are going to use for piglets, but otherwise we are going to have to purchase or build all of our other containment for the animals we are planning on.

So far, we have a deposit down on four Nubian doelings due around January/February and five Berkshire gilt piglets due around April/May. We are also planning on getting an assortment of poultry (Buff Orpingtons, Silver Laced Wyandottes, chocolate and blue/white pied Muscovies, and Red Bourbon turks). We may or may not get a Jersey in the fall depending on our finances from clearing and creating pens, and the state of the fence.

We currently have an assortment of house pets as it is, including some that a lot of people think are great for food, but I can't see them as anything but pets. :thumb: Our current pets are 4 cats, 2 dogs, 2 ferrets, 2 guinea pigs, 2 rats, and 2 rabbits. In the coming year, we are also planning on taking in an additional cat that currently lives outside our current apartment (where we have been temporarily living while finding a house, we just moved here from Oregon) and possibly a third dog depending on the finances again. :cute:

We are planning on using the land around our house for the poultry and for our garden, as we have about 1-1.5 acres that is not going to be useful for agricultural exemptions. We are not strict about organic, but we are planning on only using pesticides when necessary as I love the bees, and it's sort of common knowledge now that certain ones are extremely detrimental to bees. I also dislike using food that has pesticides on it unless it is unavoidable, just due to the increased risk of cancer that has been somewhat documented. I plan the better safe than sorry game when it comes to food. :)

We already have seeds for a variety of things, and this our list so far: green beans, broccoli, celery, cauliflower, corn, carrots, cucumbers, eggplants, ground cherries, gourds, lettuce, muskmelons and watermelons, okra, onions, potatoes, peas, peppers, soybeans, sunflowers, spinach, pumpkins, zucchini, crocked neck squash, butternut squash, swish chard, tomatoes, our herbs (cilantro, mint, cumin, basil, parsley, rosemary, and thyme), and our fruit trees (orange, apples, pomegranate, and mango). The house already has some other berry vines that we are going to be transplanting, as well as a lemon tree that looks like it needs some desperate saving from aphids. We are trying to be as self sufficient as possible, and we have done some gardening previously although not to this scale. :D

Any helpful tips are appreciated, as this is our first farm (although I have had plenty of experience with livestock of all sorts throughout my years).
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Cool! So you're not far from me. :) I'm still in Alachua county, though, which is bad on taxes but good because of it's proximity to UF where I go to school and where my SO works. Give and take, I guess.
 

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Welcome Meaghan! I'm sure you'll find a lot of good information here. I think over on the permaculture site you'll find a poster from Florida with a greenhouse and really healthy looking papayas.

Congratulations on your new property! Also Grandmotherbear is down south of you. Have fun!
 

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Hey good to have you on board. Maybe sometime we can meet. I'm in North Alabama and make the trip to the panhandle several times a year.
 

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Light rain: Why would you need a greenhouse in most parts of Florida? :D Just kidding, we did get a bit of frost here the last few nights. But that doesn't sound that bad! Where is this permaculture site?

Chuckles: Thank you. :) I don't go up to the panhandle much, we tend to go south of here to Orlando or Tampa if me and my SO are travelling anywhere.
 

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In normal years I get a growing season that lasts almost all but about 2 months of the year. But I have still been planning a green house to extend it all year. And utilizing indoor spaces to grow herbs and things that do better in cooler temps.
 

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Crater Cove: Our small animal room for the house pets I mentioned above is also going to double as our starter plant room so that we can transplant outdoors after the last frost in March. We were considering building a greenhouse, but it's not something we have in our budget for this year. :) What size are you considering?

M5farm: Thanks. As I mentioned, I'm a transplant from the west coast, so I just call this area what the locals do. :)
 

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No idea yet. :D We need some time to even determine how much we can grow on average and of what and how long everything lasts us. It's difficult to determine with a growing family too. Life; the long term project. lol
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Crater Cove: I completely understand. We are just right now trying to puzzle out where and how our garden is going to be laid out. I know certain veggies shouldn't really go next to each other, and we're trying to determine good trap crops so we can keep our central ones free (or more free, anyways) of pests. Life is a great project, though, isn't it? :D
 
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