We are not far out of the urban growth boundary and only a 15 minute drive to downtown Eugene. Our property is a rectangle about 2100 feet by 310 feet with the narrow end bordering our not-too-busy road to the east. Our land is flat and some parts of it flood in some winters. The 3.5 acres nearest the road contains our house, workroom (converted 2 car garage), greenhouse/shadehouse, orchard, well, crop areas, irrigated pastures, and outbuildings. There is a U shaped driveway that goes from the road past the house, past all the outbuildings and then back to the road. The middle 4.5 acres is woods and the back 7 acres is unirrigated pasture edged with woods.
My husband Jim and I started the Living Earth Farm on this property in 2007. Our gross income increased every year until we hit $61,000 in 2014, and then we started downsizing because we didn’t like having employees and we can’t do so much physical labor anymore (we are now 66 and 59). Rather than just keeping the farm going at a smaller level ourselves, we decided to get a younger farm partner.
Our former UO intern Josiah moved here in October. Josiah has his own business called the Living Earth Farmstand. He does most of the work of growing and harvesting the fruits and vegetables and sells them at a farmstand in Eugene and also to CSA customers. I take care of the flowers, sheep, bees, planning, organizing, and the weekly/monthly computer work. I also serve as a mentor to Josiah and I try to get a UO intern each term and teach them about farming. I also host farm field trips for schools and daycamps. Jim takes care of the ducks and chickens and maintenance/repair of farm equipment and computer/website. We take on each other’s chores in the event of illness, vacations, or other needs.
Josiah will be leaving by the end of November, so we are looking for an individual or couple with farming experience to take his place. We would like to find someone who could stay more than a year and might be interested in taking over the whole farm eventually. See more about our farm at www.thelivingearthfarm.com
With help from a farm partner, we would like to see the current farm use maintained. We would like to get water rights to irrigate more pasture, re-seed some areas of pasture, plant some trees in our pastures (silvopasture), use more cover crops and less tilling (regenerative agriculture), and do more marketing so we can sell all our products. We would also like to get some of the downed trees in the woods cut, split, and sold as firewood and get some blackberries mowed back. We would like to make biochar and incorporate it into the crop soil. We would like to put up more birdhouses and do some habitat restoration. We would like to get a solar fence charger and a manual well pump so we don’t have to run the generator full time if power is out for a long time.
We want to find a like-minded farm partner to eventually take over the farm. Hopefully we could still live here and help out and do more teaching. We would love to see an increase in regenerative agriculture and silvopasture. Organic certification could be obtained and maybe Biodynamic as well. Vegetable production could be increased since we are currently using only half of our fenced crop area. If water rights are obtained, more pastures could be irrigated and the sheep flock could expand. More meat chickens and pigs could be raised. It would be great to plant hedgerows of native plants and do more habitat restoration. We’d like to get more solar panels and a battery so our solar power can run when the grid is down. We’d like to have more people living and working together on the farm. Overall we’d like to see a farm that is financially and ecologically sustainable, resilient to climate change while also helping to reverse it, and run by people who are full of energy and joy, not overworked and overwhelmed.
We have three fenced and irrigated crop areas which total .28 acres where we grow vegetables, melons and strawberries. We have kept records of where different crops have grown and maintained crop rotations. We have a small irrigated orchard with 10 large old apple trees, 7 smaller new apple trees, 1 large old European pear and 2 smaller new pear trees (1 Asian, 1 European), 1 plum, and 1 cherry. We have a small irrigated area of cultivated berries, grapes, and kiwis, and lots of wild Armenian blackberries. We have 1-2 beehives, 4 ducks, and 1 chicken that live next to our house and in the orchard. We have 7 acres of non-irrigated pasture plus about a half acre of irrigated pasture, plus a barn and corral which we use for our flock of 8 sheep and guard llama. Seasonally we also raise a few pigs and a small flock of meat chickens on pasture. We do management intensive grazing. We also have a pond, 4-5 acres of woods (oak/madrone/fir), and scattered big trees that we leave for wildlife habitat. In the past we were Certified Wildlife Friendly and Animal Welfare Approved (the first farm in the country to get both certifications!)
Really good well with powerful pump, buried water lines to house and barn, lots of hoses, drip irrigation in all crop areas, portable sprinklers for orchard/pastures.
Class 2 farmland. 78% Salkum silt loam (#120B), 20% Linslaw loam in parts of woods and large pasture (#73), 2% Natroy silty clay loam in pasture along the road (#85).
7 stall barn with center aisle and hay loft. Workshop. Tractor shed. Brooder house. Storage shed. Workroom attached to house (converted 2 car garage).
Small Kubota tractor (new) with loader, mower, tiller, and subsoiler. Mantis tiller. Weedwhacker. Chainsaws. Air compressor and nailer. Shop power tools. Lots of hand tools. Wheelbarrows, cart, wagon, trailers. Earthway Seeder. Electric fertilizer spreader. 3 fridges, 2 chest freezers, cool room. Electric fence chargers, netting fences, etc. Grain grinder. Hay elevator. Portable animal shelters. Poultry butchering set up with stunner, cones, plucker, and stainless steel table. Sheep/goat handling equipment. Canopy, tables, chairs, coolers, sandwich board, signs for farmstand.
RR5/RR10 zoning, lots of neighbors, no water rights
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