Why More People are Setting Up Their Own Organic Farms

Organic farming is a growing trend found all throughout the country. It’s estimated that for every five regular farms being established, there is at least one organic farm being created. This is an amazing shift in our way of farming, since there has been an enormous problem with the use of pesticides in recent years. Pesticides are hazardous to our health, making it difficult to feel safe consuming the fruits and vegetables that we buy from our local supermarkets. Thankfully, many people are forgoing supermarket produce shopping altogether and are choosing to set up their own organic farms in their backyard.

 

Setting up your own organic farm in the backyard is great if you’re tired of the high cost of produce and the insecurity of knowing where your food is coming from. The only disadvantage to having your own farm and relying solely on its production is that certain foods can’t be done all year and are specific to certain seasons. This limits the amount and type of produce you’re able to yield. Other than this minor inconvenience, organic farming in your backyard is a marvelous way to regulate what’s being put onto your foods before you chow down.

 

To set up your own farming spot, you’ll need an adequate area in the backyard that gets both sun and shade throughout the day. Most crops do best in partial sun and shade, allowing them time to heat up and cool down during the hotter months of the year. You need to keep your crops watered daily to prevent them from burning and drying out, especially if you’re living in a hot climate. If you can’t plant the crops directly in the earth, consider building a vegetable box and filling it with dirt and organic matter to encourage the plants to grow their best.

 

You should begin to see a yield of crops within the first couple of months after doing your planting. You need to read all directions for the specific plant you’re putting into the ground as some require more or less water and full sun to keep them healthy.

 

Why More People are Getting Into Chicken Farming

People are starting to realize that it is better for them to live off the land and be able to provide for themselves. Because of this, you’ll notice a growing trend around the country of people doing their own chicken farming. Chicken farming is a relatively easy hobby to get into and it doesn’t result in near the amount of work as typical livestock farming demands. In fact, most areas allow for chickens to be kept on your property, so unless you live in a very city-like urban environment, you shouldn’t have to worry about any laws governing the ownership of chickens.

 

Chicken farming isn’t just a fun and relaxing hobby, it is also a great way to produce eggs that you can use in your own home for cooking. The typical hen will lay one or two eggs each day, allowing you to have a fresh supply of eggs at any given time. Not only will this save you a lot of money, but you will know where your eggs are coming from and that they are completely organic and laid by free range chickens.

 

Most farm supply stores sell all of the necessary equipment that you’ll need to start your own coop. Certain stores, such as Tractor Supply, even have chickens and ducks for sale in the early spring months for people who would rather buy their birds locally as opposed to ordering them online. When you order your chickens online, they’ll be shipped next-day to ensure that all of the animals arrive healthy and alive. If you live in a cold area, it is imperative that you provide the chickens a warm place to stay when temperatures drop.

 

Once you’ve set up your coop, you should maintain it on a daily basis to keep your chickens happy. Provide the chickens with warmth, water and plenty of food and they’ll reward you by laying eggs daily. It’s crucial that you keep your chickens away from predators and other animals that could eat the eggs, especially if you live in an area that deals with a lot of wildlife.

 

Scientists Asked To Help Eliminate Chicken Suffering

In October 2016, Jonty Whittleton developed an article that was posted on Huffington, depicting the suffering that chicken go through in the cages. In the post titled, Another Level of Suffering for Chicken, Whittleton explained how caged chicken are denied the opportunity to behave naturally.

 

 

Apparently, out of the 60 billion chickens that are reared annually, nearly 67 percent of them are factory farmed. It means that the majority of these birds spend their entire lives enclosed in large warehouses that have no windows, yet filled with tens of thousands of them. While the conditions in these farms are already sufficiently bad, the situation is worse with the use of cages to grow chickens.

 

That aside, the poultry industry has yet another concern and is hoping that the scientists will find a way to wipe it out. For the longest time, big poultry companies have been struggling with various mass-production practices to make the chickens they breed for meat purposes happy, without causing a negative interference to the profits.

 

According to a post appearing on Grub Street, some players in the industry claim to have found a solution. The answer does not involve causing any changes to the chicken-rearing practices, but rather, a lot of science. Big Poultry is in the process of genetically engineering a chicken capable of experiencing minimal suffering. It all has to do with determining the “most appropriate” bird size, as well as the growth rate.

 

About half a century ago, the industry developed a breed of chicken (chicken 2.0) which grows twice as big in half the usual time. From a biological viewpoint, this strategy reaped no benefits especially because it resulted in fat, yet boneless birds, highly prone to heart diseases and a wide array of other health problems. Players in the poultry industry, therefore, feel that the wisest move is to breed out these birds and genetically re-engineer chickens that behave like chickens. On this, Perdue is in the process of exploring numerous ways capable of making the birds grow at almost the same rate as nature intended it, and the top breeding firms are offering as much support as they can.

 

 

The Rise of Organic Farming

We all know about the dangers of pesticide use in farming. If you’re not buying organic, chances are that you’re purchasing crops that have been sprayed with some type of pesticide. Large farms and corporations use these chemicals to yield more products. If they have less pests eating away at their plants, they will produce more crops and be able to keep their prices to a minimum. Unfortunately, we pay for it by receiving veggies and fruits that are literally riddled with chemical pesticides and fungicides that are difficult to wash off.

 

You’ll notice a significant growth in organic farming all across the country. Organic farming is more difficult because farmers need to resort to natural methods to keep their plants lively and pest-free, but it is healthier for the consumers when they do not need to worry about the chemicals sprayed onto their foods. In fact, you may notice that most foods in your local supermarket are going organic because there is a high demand for this type of product. No one likes that their food is dangerous to eat, so they are opting to pay a little more and buy organic and GMO-free.

 

One of the major cons of organic farming is the slow production and price. You might hear certain people say that eating healthy is cheap and easy, but it truly isn’t. Organic produce costs, on average, two or three times the amount compared to non-organic vegetables and fruits. This hike in the price is problematic for people who are on strict budgets and can’t afford to spend more just to avoid chemicals they can’t even see. Organic farmers are realizing this dilemma and are starting to slowly drop their prices to reflect the financial needs of their customers.

 

In order to go organic, you need to read labels carefully. If a product or piece of produce has the USDA seal for organic on it, it means it is organic. If something says it’s natural, it does not mean it is necessarily free of pesticides or other chemicals. Be cautious when purchasing anything if you’re trying to live a completely organic lifestyle as many products have chemicals in them without stating it on the label.

 

It’s Springtime: Time for Chicken Farming!

The spring season is a perfect time to start a new hobby and there is nothing more interesting and innovative than chicken farming. Unlike livestock farming that requires a lot of money and time, chicken farming is ideal even for the suburban dweller. You don’t need to spend a lot of money on your chickens and they’ll produce eggs on an almost daily basis. This gives you the chance to have fresh eggs every day and know where those eggs are coming from.

 

Chicken farming is incredibly popular because of the low maintenance and high yield. People are becoming wary of buying regular eggs from their supermarket because of the problems that come with the food and livestock industries. Being able to grow your own chickens at home and have them produce delicious eggs is a great way to still enjoy eggs without giving them up for ethical reasons. You also have the advantage of knowing what your chickens are eating to know that the eggs are all-natural and won’t have any antibiotics in the yolk.

 

Getting involved in chicken farming is easy and fun. It’s important to first find out the different laws and regulations in your area concerning keeping chickens. Most areas are lenient with chicken farming, but more urban and city environments will be strict and may not allow residents to keep chickens on their properties. Once you’ve found out if you can have a chicken farm, you’ll need to buy all of the necessary supplies to keep your birds safe, well-fed and watered all throughout the year. Next, you’ll need to buy your birds either from a local farmer or supply chain.

 

To keep your chickens happy, the coop needs to be well-maintained throughout the year. You must make time for your chickens in order to prevent your birds from becoming sick or unhappy. You’ll find that with a properly maintained coop and a basic knowledge of bird keeping, you’ll be the owner of content chickens who all yield a large amount of eggs for you and your family. Chicken farming isn’t difficult and it can be one of the most rewarding hobbies you ever get involved in.

 

This Is the One Thing That You Have to Do Before Planting Your Seeds This Year

If you plan on growing plants anytime this year, there’s one trick that you’ll want to know about. Namely, you’ll want to remember to soak your seeds before you plant them. Soaking your seeds before you plant them will decrease the time it takes for your seeds to germinate and make growing times faster overall for whatever plants you plan on growing.

 

The reasons that you should soak seeds before planting them

 

Many people skip the step of soaking their seeds before planting them in soil. They do this because they think that it doesn’t make any difference whether they soak their seeds or not, but it definitely makes a difference.

 

It may be surprising, but the reason that it’s necessary to soak seeds before planting them is because that’s what Mother Nature does. Mother Nature doesn’t necessary soak them, but it beats them up pretty well.

 

The truth is that before a seed germinates and grows, it is battered and experiences all types of conditions, and for this reason, it has built up defenses to repair itself for the harsh cruelties of Mother Nature. In response, it is the gardener’s job to make sure that these defenses get broken down purposefully. Otherwise, it will take an extra few days to a week to break down these defenses, and if you’re planning on planting your garden quickly and reaping the rewards from your garden as soon as possible, you won’t have this kind of time.

 

How to soak seeds before planting them

 

If you are a gardener who is starting a garden soon, you’ll definitely want to soak your seeds before planting them. This is relatively easy and painless process. You’ll only need your seeds and some water.

 

First, put water in a small bowl. You’ll want it to be quite hot. You can even use boiling water. Put the seeds in your bowl of water. All seeds can be soaked, so it doesn’t matter what kind they are. Leave the seeds and the bowl until your water cools off. Leave them for one to two days.

 

The Top Herbs You Must Have in Your Kitchen Herb Garden

Whoever said that you had to have a garden in your back yard to have fresh herbs? It is easy to start your very own kitchen herb garden in your home. But the question surrounding what types of herbs to grow in your garden still remains. If you are unsure of the herbs that you’d like to grow in your garden, consider the following options that can be great for your cooking and baking needs.

 

Sweet Italian Basil

 

Basil is an herb that is integral to Italian cuisine, but you’ll be sure to find other great uses for this sweet smelling herb as well. Sweet Italian basil is the most typical type of this herb, and you can easily grow it in your kitchen herb garden. This type of basil produces large lush green leaves that you’ll be dying to chop up and put on top of your lasagna or soup.

 

Cilantro

 

As the staple of Mexican cuisine, if you enjoy tacos, fajitas or any other type of Mexican dishes, you’ll definitely want to have someone cilantro in your kitchen herb garden. With that being said, some people have a distinct aversion to this herb, and they may feel that it tastes like soap. If this is the case with you, don’t have cilantro in your herb garden. It’s as easy as that.

 

Chives

 

Chives are an allium plant and are a variant of green onions. These onion-flavored herbs are great on top of an omelette or in a wrap or sandwich. Chives are easy to grow, and they taste great and look pretty on lots of different types of meals.

 

Parsley

 

Parsley is in a lot of different types of cuisines as well, and it’s definitely in many soups and Italian dishes like lasagna and spaghetti. You can basically sprinkle it on anything. It’s also a great garnish, and it can even make your breath smell better if you don’t have anything like a mint after dinner or lunch.

 

These are the best herbs to start with. As you gain more experience with kitchen gardening, you can certainly add more herbs.

 

Why Soaking Seeds Before Planting Them Is a Great Idea

Growing a garden often sounds like a great idea, but when it comes down to it, many people don’t realize how much work creating a garden entails. With that being said, anyone can garden and enjoy it, and it’s simply up to you to teach yourself the basics of this fun and useful task.

 

The first thing that you’ll need to do when planting a garden is buy your seeds. Remember not to buy too many seeds if you’ve never had a garden before. You don’t want to overwhelm yourself on your first go of it.

 

The second thing that you’ll need to do when you get ready to plant your seeds and after you’ve purchased them is soak your seeds. This is absolutely essential, but many new gardeners forget to do this or avoid doing it altogether.

 

The reason that you need to soak your seat before planting, is so that they will check any faster. In the wild, all types of seeds are battered and soaked before the germinate. This is why they have natural defenses built up and they don’t germinate immediately. For example, you’ll notice that if you plant seeds without soaking them first, they won’t start to peak through the top of the soil for a few days. If you soak your seeds, however, they will start to peak through the soil after just one day.

 

You’ll only need a little bit of hot water in a container and your planting seeds to soak them effectively. Make the water in your container as hot as possible. You can even boil it for some types of seeds. Put the seeds inside the container and allow them to soak there as the water cools off. This is all you need to do!

 

You may be wondering how long your seeds should soak in your bowl of hot water. Most of the time, you’ll only want to soak them for half a day to a full day. You should never soak your seeds for more than two full days as this could over-soak them, and in that case, they may not grow.

 

Trump Administration Places Restriction on USDA

The United States Department of Agriculture is one of the most important government divisions that the country has. This division is responsible, at a high-level, for all agricultural development in the country. The division also puts for a significant amount of time into researching agricultural topics including food and environmental concerns. While the USDA has historically made their finding public, without going through a higher level of approval, the Trump Administration has announced that this process will be changing.

 

The new presidential administration has announced that they will be forbidding the USDA from publicly sharing any information that they find without receiving prior approval. This includes any work that is already in process by one of the 2,000 scientists that the USDA has hired. The information that will no longer be able to be released will include full studies, photos, fact sheets, social media content, or updated new feeds.

 

The USDA is not the only wing of the government that has received notification of the gag order. The US EPA has also received notice that they are no longer able to release information without prior approval from a higher level. The EPA’s restrictions include limitations on press releases, blogs, and social media blasts. The EPA is also no longer able to make additional purchases, hires, or any other decisions that could increase the annual expenditure.

 

The decisions and restrictions set forth on the USDA and EPA are consistent with what is going on in other areas of the government. As the Trump Administration continues to appoint more committee and cabinet members, the organization is asking that most government spending be controlled. This will give the organizations a time to gather and organize before developing a new strategy to expand or contract the scope.

 

The EPA and USDA were both very highly used under the Obama Administration. Both organizations were involved to find ways to make food and the environment healthier and stronger. The organizations also recently have released reports that make it clear the global warming is continuing as the prior few years have been among the warmest on record.

 

 

Oklahoma State Voters Win against The Amendment of The Right To Farm By Casting Votes.

In 2012, North Dakota approved the right to farm amendments as voted by citizens. Missouri approved the same in 2014. The report, sourced from http://huffingtonpost.com/ indicated that in 2016, Oklahoma sixty percent of voters casted their ballots to reject the amendment of the right to farm by approximately 300,000 counts. The Oklahoma revision included an additional requirement for lawmakers in the State to appear in court for legislations on farming, water quality, animal cruelty or GMOs. The long process was deemed by voters.

 

 

The win was also supported by animal welfare enthusiast, unions of environmentalists and other organizations in opposition of the amendment. According to these opponents, the revision would have disabled any amended laws os the state’s farmers in future.

 

 

The right to farm amendment would have had a couple of restrictions on the farmers under the Oklahoma State constitution. The farmers and ranchers would be restricted from utilizing farming technology, practicing livestock keeping or ranching until the state justified the practices.

As a result, the statehouse voted in mass agreement to put the regulation question on the ballot for voters to decide. The director of Oklahoma Sierra Club, Johnson Bridgewater, that the amendment would have adverse effects on farmers and the connected community parties. He noted that the new regulations would override the law and a right to farm law that was passed decades ago in Oklahoma as well as in other 50 states. Johnson explained that the pre-existing first right to farm laws protected small scale farmers from overwhelming court charges. He however added to say that large scale farmers and businesses have taken advantage of the protection to avoid following regulations.

 

 

Joe Maxwell, the Director of HSUS Legislative Fund was impressed by the effort of united organizations such as HSUS, InterTribal Council of the Five Civilized Tribes, non Profit organizations and other farming unions. He said that the unity raised awareness to farmers to cast their votes. He expressed his wish for future caution in attempts to change the legislative rights of farmers. The Oklahoma Farm Bureau President commented that the bureau’s effort will not cease leading the amendment efforts until the farmers and ranchers earn protection from the revised laws. Recently, increasing number of States such as West Virginia and Indiana are introducing the ballot option for voters to decide on the right to farm regulations.