Small Farmer's Journal

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MONDAY

September 26, 2016

Times Change and We Must Change With Them

Times Change And We Must Change With Them (Somewhat)

Small Farmer’s Journal is restructuring and changing its business model • Continued delivery of print edition Small Farmer’s Journal • $5 per month website subscription • Increased ad content, print and web combined. For nigh on forty years we looked to magazine subscription revenue to keep us rolling. We printed journals and mailed them to our subscribers. The internet has changed all of that. We can share our small farm message and advertisers to even more people which makes us stronger than ever.

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TUESDAY

September 27, 2016

The Tip Cart

The Tip Cart

When horses were the main source of power on every farm, in the British Isles it was the tip-cart, rather than the wagon which was the most common vehicle, and for anyone farming with horses, it is still an extremely useful and versatile piece of equipment. The farm cart was used all over the country, indeed in some places wagons were scarcely used at all, and many small farms in other areas only used carts.

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WEDNESDAY

September 28, 2016

Cheval de Merens Revisited

Cheval de Merens Revisited

In the Fall ’97 issue of SFJ you printed an article on the Cheval de Merens, the all black horse of the French Pyrenees. I was immediately obsessed by their beautiful stature, a very strong draft-type-looking horse with powerful legs and long flowing manes and tails. The article sent me running for maps to locate France and the Ariege Valley, the central location for the Merens. After making contact with the writer of the article and being told of the major Merens horse show in August, plane reservations were made.

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THURSDAY

September 29, 2016

walshfeatured
from

Walsh No Buckle Harness

When first you become familiar with North American working harness you might come to the erroneous conclusion that, except for minor style variations, all harnesses are much the same. While quality and material issues are accounting for substantive differences in the modern harness, there were also interesting and important variations back in the early twentieth century which many of us today either have forgotten or never knew about. Perhaps the most significant example is the Walsh No Buckle Harness.

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FRIDAY

September 30, 2016

Boer Goats
from

Boer Goats

The introduction of the Boer Goat has stirred up a lot of interest in all sectors of agriculture. The demand for goat meat exceeds the supply; goat meat is the most consumed meat in the world. One of the main points about South African Boer Goats is that out of all meat goat breeds the Boer is the top meat producer whereas in the cattle business you have over 100 breeds of beef cattle that all compete for the beef dollar.

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On the Anatomy of Thrift: Side Butchery

On the Anatomy of Thrift: Side Butchery

WARNING: contains animal slaughter. It is very humane and not very graphic, but may affect sensitive souls. – SFJ

On the Anatomy of Thrift is an instructional series Farmrun created with Farmstead Meatsmith. Their principal intention is instruction in the matters of traditional pork processing. In a broader and more honest context, OAT is a deeply philosophical manifesto on the subject of eating animals.

Side Butchery is the first in the series, and was the cornerstone around which the entire concept blossomed. It is the most explicitly instructional of all three, and builds on the theory that was established in the fundraising video, exploring the historical context of pork to the home kitchen.

A Farmrun Production by Andrew Plotsky

News & Weather

  • September 30, 2016

    $2 million grant advances research on use of manure in organic farming

    WASHINGTON, D.C. – A new $2 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), awarded to a multidisciplinary team from the University of California, Davis, University of Minnesota, University of Maine, the USDA Agricultural Research Service’s Beltsville Agricultural Research ...

  • September 29, 2016

    Productive Riparian Buffers

    KIMBERTON, PA. In the next six years, Pennsylvania’s Department of Conservation and Natural Resources has set the goal of installing nearly 100,000 acres of riparian buffers throughout the state. Buffers protect water resources, reduce erosion, and add to biodiversity within ...

  • September 12, 2016

    Plate Of The Union Kicks Off “Battleground States Food Truck Tour” in New Hampshire

    Plate of the Union, a collaborative campaign calling on the next president to take action to fix our nation’s food system, launched its “Battleground States Food Truck Tour” stopping in Portsmouth, Londonderry, and Hanover, New Hampshire. The event featured a ...

Letters

  • Cheval de Merens Revisited

    In the Fall ’97 issue of SFJ you printed an article on the Cheval de Merens, the all black horse of the French Pyrenees. I was immediately obsessed by their beautiful stature, a very strong draft-type-looking horse with powerful legs ...

  • Black Walnuts All ‘Round

    Dear Lynn, In the Summer 2014 SFJ there is an article by Glenn Dahlem about the black walnut (p. 62). If I may, there are a few additions I would like to make regarding using black walnuts. First, the harvesting. From ...

  • Keep ‘Em Coming

    Super magazine, Lynn and Kristi!! I love the content, and I can’t wait for the next issue in my mailbox. My best to you. Bob Langness Broomfield, CO

  • A Large Part

    Mr Miller – My name is George Bristol. I served for 38 years on active duty in the United States Marine Corps. I retired in August 2013 as a Colonel and am still working in special operations overseas. I am writing ...

Upcoming Events

Sep
28
Wed
Young Living Draft Horse Show @ Mona, UT
Sep 28 – Oct 2 all-day

660-626-3925

Oct
2
Sun
Fryeburg Fair @ Fryeburg, ME
Oct 2 – Oct 9 all-day
Oct
6
Thu
Keystone International Livestock Exposition @ Harrisburg, PA
Oct 6 – Oct 8 all-day

717-787-2905

New York Draft Horse Club Sale @ Cortland, NY
Oct 6 – Oct 7 all-day
Oct
7
Fri
Draft Animal-Power Network Annual Gathering @ Charleston, NH
Oct 7 – Oct 9 all-day

Weights & Measures

Sack Filler Funnel

Sack Filler Funnel

My Small Kitchen with Kristi Gilman-Miller

Fresh Plum Cake

Cut two pounds of fresh prune plums in halves, remove pits, but do not peel. Add sugar to sweeten, about one and one-half cups, and about one-third cup cold water. Let stand for several hours, stirring occasionally until sugar is dissolved.

Divide dough and pat in two eight-inch layer cake pans, bringing the dough well up the sides of the pans.

Arrange a layer of plums, cut side up, in the pans.

Add enough grated soft bread crumbs to take up the juice in the bowl, then spread this mixture over the plums.

Dot with butter, and bake in a hot oven about 375 degrees F. for about twenty-five minutes, or until done and nicely browned on top.

Can be served either warm or cold, pie-fashion.

Dough:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ cup butter or other shortening
  • 2/3 cup milk (about)

Sift flour and measure, sift with baking powder and salt, and sift again. Cut in shortening. Add milk gradually until a soft dough is formed.

Spotlight On: Equipment & Facilities

Barn Raising

Barn Raising

by:
from issue:

Here it was like a beehive with too many fuzzy cheeked teen-agers who couldn’t possibly be experienced enough to be of much help. But work was being accomplished; bents, end walls and partitions were being assembled like magic and raised into place with well-coordinated, effortless ease and precision. No tempers were flaring, no egomaniacs were trying to steal the show, and there was not the usual ten percent doing ninety percent of the work.

John Deere Model A Tractor

John Deere Model A Tractor

from issue:

Your John Deere Tractor has a range of speeds. These various speeds not only give you the flexibility and adaptability you want, but also they enable you to balance the load and the speed for maximum economy. However, if you are handling a light load and want to travel at slow speed, it is far better to put your tractor into the gear which gives you the speed you want than to use a higher gear and throttle down.

Portable A-Frame

Portable A-Frame

by:
from issue:

These portable A-frames can be used for lots of lifting projects. Decades ago, when I was horselogging on the coast I used something similar to this to load my short logger truck. Great homemade tool.

Disc Harrow Requirements

Disc Harrow Requirements

from issue:

One of the most important requirements is disc blade concavity, that is, correct concavity. Further along we set forth the purposes of disc concavity. We feel it is important enough to devote the extra time and words in a discussion of the subject, because seldom is disc concavity talked about, and very few know that there is difference enough to cause good and bad work.

Horsedrawn Mower Cutting Hay Crop

The Cost of Working Horses

Comparison of four horse-powered farms, including teamster hours, horse hours, income, and expenses.

shoeing-stock

Shoeing Stocks

An article from the out-of-print Winter 1982 Issue of SFJ.

I Built My Own Buckrake

I Built My Own Buckrake

by:
from issue:

One of the fun things about horse farming is the simplicity of many of the machines. This opens the door for tinkerers like me to express themselves. Sometimes it is just plain nice to take a proven design and build one of your own. Last spring I did just that. I built my own buckrake.

Work Horse Handbook

The Work Horse Handbook

The decision to depend on horses or mules in harness for farm work, logging, or highway work is an important one and should not be taken lightly. Aside from romantic notions of involvement in a picturesque scene, most of the considerations are serious.

LittleField Notes Mower Notes

LittleField Notes: Mower Notes

by:
from issue:

The horse drawn mowing machine is a marvel of engineering. Imagine a pair of horses turning the energy of their walking into a reciprocal cutting motion able to drop acres of forage at a time without ever burning a drop of fossil fuel. And then consider that the forage being cut will fuel the horses that will in turn cut next year’s crop. What a beautiful concept! Since I’ve been mowing some everyday I’ve had lots of time to think about the workings of these marvelous machines.

Champion No.4 Mower Reaper

The Champion No. 4 Combined Mower and Self-Raking Reaper

by:
from issue:

The project for the winter of 2010 was a Champion No. 4 mower made sometime around 1878 by the Champion Machine Works of Springfield, Ohio. The mower was in remarkably good condition for its age. After cleaning dirt from gears and oiling, we put the machine on blocks and found that none of the parts were frozen and everything moved.

Living With Horses

Living With Horses

by:
from issue:

The French breed of Ardennes is closer to what the breed has been in the past. The Ardennes has always been a stockier type of horse, rude as its environment. Today the breed has dramatically changed into a real heavy horse. The difference between the Ardennes and their “big” sisters, the Brabants in Belgium, or the Trait du Nord in France, has gone.

New Horse-drawn Side Delivery Rakes from Europe

New Horse-drawn Side Delivery Rakes from Europe

By a good set-up of the gear ratio in the mechanical transmission and a precise setting of the working height of the raking teeth, this implement comes up with good operating results, even at the low working speed of a draft horse.

Cole One Horse Planters

Cole One Horse Planters

by:
from issue:

The most populous single horse planting tools were made by Planet Junior. But they were by no means the only company producing these small farm gems. Most manufacturers included a few models and some, like Planet Junior, American and Cole specialized in the implement. What follows are fourteen different models from Cole’s, circa 1910, catalog. We published ten of these in volume 30 number three of Small Farmer’s Journal.

barn-1

Shed and Barn Plans

Below is a short piece from Starting Your Farm, by SFJ editor and publisher Lynn R. Miller. Click the links below to see Chapter One of Starting Your Farm and to view the book in our online bookstore. “You may have purchased a farm with a fantastic set of old barns and sheds. You, on […]

Build Your Own Butter Churn

Build Your Own Butter Churn

by:
from issue:

A cheap two-gallon stock pot from the local chain store got me started in churn building. It was thin stainless steel and cost less than ten bucks. I carted it home wondering what I might find in my junk pile to run the thing. I found an old squirrel cage fan and pulled the little motor to test it. I figure that if it could turn a six-inch fan, it could turn a two-inch impeller.

The Farm & Bakery Wagon

The Farm & Bakery Wagon

by:
from issue:

The first step was to decide on an appropriate chassis, or “running gear.” Eventually I chose to go with the real deal, a wooden-wheeled gear with leaf springs rather than pneumatic tires. Wooden wheels last forever with care and are functional and look the part.

The Cutting Edge

The Cutting Edge

by:
from issue:

In the morning we awoke to a three quarters of a mile long swath of old growth mixed conifer and aspen trees, uprooted and strewn everywhere we looked. We hadn’t moved here to become loggers, but it looked like God had other plans! We had chosen to become caretakers of this beautiful place because of the peace and quiet, the clean air, the myriad of birds and wildlife! Thus, we were presented with a challenge: how to clean up this blowdown in a clean, sustainable way.

An Efficient Economical Barn

An Efficient, Economical Barn

by:
from issue:

A well thought out, functional barn should be the center piece of any farming endeavor, horse powered or fossil fueled, that involves livestock. After building and using two previous barns during our lifetimes, I think the one we now have has achieved a level of convenience, efficiency, and economy that is worth passing on.

Journal Guide