Life on the farm holds an appeal for all kinds of people, whether they themselves grew up on one or are only just now considering a change in scenery and lifestyle. The idea of spending sunny spring days planting crops or enjoying newborn livestock sounds exciting to city dwellers ready for an escape from the rat race and busy streets.
Of course, once you have the land in your name, reality will set in. You’ll need to start gathering some of the things you’ll need to operate your little tract of heaven. Build your budget and your plans around these key items that can help you get started building your dream farm.
A Tractor (Or Two)
Tractors are the workhorse and all-around go-to utility vehicle of the modern farm. Their power operates or pulls everything else you use on the farm, from harvesters to utility trailers; you can use them to clear areas of snow, weeds, underbrush, or general light debris that might be in the way of your fields or walkways. Most likely, your farm will eventually require at least a couple of tractors, one large and one small, but focus on acquiring a small one in the beginning. It will be enough for the basic maintenance and production tasks you’ll encounter. Add a loader for extra versatility. Eventually, if it’s your plan to expand, your farm will grow large enough that a larger tractor will be required to handle larger tasks.
If you acquire land to build a farm from scratch instead of buying a farm that already exists, you’ll need to create fields for crops. The land around your farm may be covered in a complete stand of healthy grass, but at some point, you’ll need to plant something else to create crops. Whether you’re converting a grass field into alfalfa for hay or just tilling up a garden spot, you and your tractor will need help breaking the earth. Talk to a reputable farm equipment provider, one like Bane-Welker Equipment, to check on purchasing a plow, disc, rototiller, or all of the above to make this task easier.
It’s essential on a farm to keep some animals in, such as livestock and the general farm animals like chickens and pigs, and some animals out, such as any sort of predators that might try to eat them or damage your property while looking for shelter or a meal. Boundary fences are essential even if you don’t have animals yourself because they keep the neighbor’s livestock off of your fields. You may also need to separate different pastures on your side of the property line. To do so, you’ll need an auger for your tractor to drill holes for fence posts. You’ll also need a fence stretcher, fencing pliers, and a long chisel for “convincing” rocks to get out of your way as you dig.
Lots of Hand Tools
Something is always breaking on the farm. You’ll need to invest in a set of sockets in a wide range of sizes. Make sure to get some long breaker bars for the heaviest work. Each tractor and truck will need a basic set of mechanic’s tools as well, and you’ll need a variety of sledgehammers, shovels, rakes, hoes, chains, and so forth. Consider getting some welding training and purchasing the equipment for that as well. While you’re at it, a cutting torch will be helpful.
A farmer can certainly be equal parts business manager, mechanic, botanist, and veterinarian. All of those skills require various and vital equipment to facilitate a successful outcome. Make sure you’re fully equipped for your new life on the farm, whether that be one tractor, or two, the tools you need for a successful harvest, or decent fencing equipment to keep predators out and livestock in.