Category Archives: Farming

Why support native bees on your farm?

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farming for native bees

Until recently, native and feral bee populations met all of a farmers’ pollination needs.  Farms were smaller, and closer to natural areas where native bee populations could easily recolonize a farm should an insecticide application kill resident bees. But with the advent of the industrial farm, habitat for pollinators has been drastically reduced–today, many of our agricultural landscapes are vast… Read more »

Challenges new farmers face

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overcoming the challenges of establishing a new farm

“Determination gives you the resolve to keep going in spite of the roadblocks that lay before you.”  –Denis Waitley. Farmers are a ruggedly determined lot.  The farmers whom I know personally, are full of vim and vigor, and while obstacles may sometimes get them down on occasion, typically these challenges do not hold them back for long. Even so, farming… Read more »

Establishing a new farm: Where to start & how to prioritize

establishing a new farm

These days nothing is more enticing than the concept of living a life sustained by the land and nature.  Folks from all walks are turning away from the mainstream and it’s commercialized lifestyle.  For some it is a mission to provide a healthy atmosphere for raising their family; for others a desire to live more lightly upon the Earth–to protect… Read more »

Establishing a new farm: tools & investments

first farm investments

This is part 2 in our Establishing a New Farm blog-series.  Click here to see part 1: Where to Start & How to Prioritize. When I first started keeping bees I didn’t have many of the tools that I have now.  Hell–I didn’t even have a veil!  Looking back on it now–I really have no idea why I thought I… Read more »

Innovation, resourcefulness & creativity in farming

This is part 3 in our “Establishing a New Farm” series, you can view part 1 here, and part 2 by clicking here. Have you ever met a wealthy farmer?  Ever seen a farmer driving a flashy new sports car?  or any brand new vehicle for that matter?  Not likely.  People do not become farmers to get rich. Most farmers… Read more »

Sustainability through the family garden

I managed to set up 2 mini hoop-houses and planted a number of lettuce seedlings, yet April was a cold and windy start to the gardening season that left me longing for more.  So far May has made up for it in spades!  I’ve been out in the garden practically every day for the last week, working on preparing one… Read more »

Goat school!

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With acreage to reclaim as farm-land and the goals for Runamuk’s future in mind, I’ve signed up for the June Goat School with Ken and Janice Spaulding at Stony Knolls Farm in St.Albans this June.  The Spauldings have been raising goats for 25 years and were even featured in this article in the Bangor Daily News back in 2010.

Clearing brush for the power lines

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Last week I met with Jim Cornforth of Madison Electric to determine where exactly the lines for the electricity would run. It would be great to be able to start up our farm off the grid, but with a very limited budget we’re forced to stick with electricity for the time being.  The electric company will install up to 300… Read more »

Farming in Somerset County

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Farming in Maine has a unique connection to the state’s history.  Many of Maine’s first settlers were farmers whose fields, farmhouses and barns shaped Maine’s historic landscape.  Today Maine is still considered a “family farm” state, with approximately 94% of it’s 8100 farms ranging between 1 to 500 acres in size.  The state’s agricultural producers contribute more than $1.2 billion… Read more »

Bootstrap farmers

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Well folks it looks like Runamuk will continue to bootstrap it’s way into business.  20 years ago we could have easily gotten a loan for our start-up venture, but the game has changed and investors today want to see that you can start a business with nothing before they’ll give you money.  My business counselor suggests we take out a… Read more »

The next hurdle…finding funding

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Well we’ve got the land, we’ve got our ideas and plans and goals, now all we need is the money to put things into action.  In order to even get started at the new site of Runamuk Acres, we’re going to have to establish a foundation at the new farm–that means all of the basics that make up a farm. … Read more »

Designing a sustainable future with permaculture principles

permaculture design principles

When the idea of Runamuk first began to form in my mind, I envisioned a future for my family that revolved around living in harmony with the land.  I imagined that we would cultivate, nurture and protect the land, and the land in turn would support and nurture our family for generations to come.  I pictured a farm where the… Read more »