Conserving the Prairie Grass

Although you usually enjoy posts about aspects of the farm such as the garden, bees or chickens, something else important is happening on the farm.

The majority of the property is not being used for farming, it’s being conserved for the wild life. Prairies are becoming endangered due to urban sprawl. The tall grasses of the prairies provides food and shelter for a wide variety of animals. Letting the majority of the property go wild resulted in a wide range of healthy wildlife that we don’t see on neighboring properties that are usually brush mowed.

Deer find tall grass to give birth in so that they are hidden from view. We’ve seen 5 generations born here. Usually 2 fawns at a time. They come back to visit every year. Whole herds seek shelter during storms here.

But deer aren’t the only ones who enjoy our farm. Besides your run of the mill birds, squirrels, rabbits and raccoons, we also routinely see skunk, red and grey fox, coyotes, hawks and eagles. We’ve also been told that bobcats and a cougar have been seen in the area but luckily have not come across them.

We like to enjoy and co-exist with nature rather than eliminate it. We’ve seen some sad situations as a result but have more positive experiences than bad. With high fences around the garden and 1/2 inch wire cloth covering the chicken run and open spots around coop openings, we have never had a break in from a predator or had the garden ravaged. In the end, preservation of the land has been easy to do and very rewarding.

Our Conservation Plan

Land

Owning acreage in a world of limited resources should make everyone feel responsible. Being a good steward to the earth will allow your children to enjoy the essentials of life. Fresh air, clean water and natural food whether it comes from plants or animals. We put together a Conservation Plan to show our commitment to the ecology and wildlife on our property.

First, we will establish a more natural environment by removing lawns and invasive plants and replace with xeriscape natives. We are leaving about 30% of the land for wildlife only. We’ve seen animals ranging from birds, squirrels, rabbits and deer to raccoon,skunks, fox and coyotes. We have an abundance of garter snakes and a variety of tiny brown frogs that I’ve never seen before.

Water preservation is important. Every drop counts.Crops will be watered with drip irrigation and mulched with dried grasses and pine needles from the property to hold the moisture in. No chemical herbicides, pesticides or fertilizers will be used. The animals will be raised naturally using all natural and organic feed.

We want the farm to be naturally sustainable to be able to deliver good tasting and nutritious food to customers.