reviewed by Truman Perkins
If you are thinking to start your farm, choosing the right location is as essential as setting a farm. Farming is a growing business in America. According to National Hog Framer, ''USDA announced $16.6m funding for the farming groups''. The funding aims to promote new farms. Creating your small farm is a profitable hobby. It is also a lucrative business and an addition to passive income. Yet, the cost to build a farm is high. You have to look for land at a reasonable price. This task seems intimidating. Thorough planning beforehand saves you cost and time. Additionally, you may also need to consider the rental property. You can find some of the best properties on rent here.
Speaking of farming, Virginia encompasses a massive farming industry. Virginia is popular for the farming industry. Almost 45000 farmers are earning well in Virginia. The majority of farms are hobby farms. According to the University of Virginia, farming is a rewarding hobby and side-hustle. When you own a farm, you are open to many streams of income. You can raise cattle, grow crops, and harvest the most profitable crops of Virginia on your farm. Furthermore, you can experience clean and fresh air, eat the fruits of your farm. In other words, you can reap the fruit of your labour.
A farm can provide financial support to an individual and a family. The government has introduced various programs to support new farmers to grow in the farming industry. These programs offer financial incentives, grants, loans and tax breaks. Over the past years, the urge to promote healthy food has given rise to many programs. These programs assist and fund small farms. Before going for any funding, you must know the reason for starting your farm. The purpose of setting a farm depends on your financial goal- you want to earn a full-time income or side income. Whatever your goal is, it is perfect for anyone looking to earn extra income. There is no better place than Virginia to start a farming business. Ahead, you will discover nine powerful tips for moving to Virginia and starting a farm.
This question seems difficult to answer and requires time. It will give you an idea of the crop you want to harvest on your farm. It is important to note that farming demands hard work and consistency. You must know how many hours a day you can divide to the farm. For instance, if you spend your winter in Virginia, livestock might not be the right bet. It requires a full year time commitment. If you're a teacher, vegetables in summer may be the best option to grow and earn extra income. If you want to be a full farmer, it is advisable to learn strategies to launch a successful farming business. The answer to the first part of the question depends on your time commitment and grit.
Coming to the second part of the question- what do you hope to achieve from your farm. It relates to knowing the benefit of the farm. What types of rewards do you want to cultivate from your farm? Create a holistic goal. After that, calculate the cost and profit of every single crop. Once you have a firm understanding of the crops you want to grow, decide the farm that aligns with your goal.
When choosing the farm size, acreage is the first thing that comes to my mind. However, you should not only rely on size. Some lucrative crops can grow on a small scale. Other crops that grow on large scale lands end up delivering meagre profit. You can harvest small fruit and vegetable on a few acres of the farm. Hops can get you $25000 per acre. For cattle, you will need more acreage and expensive harvest equipment. On the other hand, small scale ventures require intensive labour. So when deciding about farm size, you should also know the time commitment.
Once you decide the farm size, it's time to consider the requirements of your land. Quality of land affects crops you will grow. A mineral-rich soil keeps the soil fertile. Almost all vegetables need fertile soil to prosper. Before purchasing any land, perform soil tests to check the quality of the land.
If your soil is in bad condition- don't lose hope. You can nourish the soil with the addition of nutrients. Furthermore, make sure you have access to quality water for raised beds. In conclusion, make the land capable of sowing any seeds in it. Healthy soil is best for growing plants.
The growth of crops depends on the climate. The climate of Virginia keeps evolving. You must know the right season for growing the crops. Humidity, rainfall, increasing temperature will impact the crops you want to grow. Thus, you have to wait for a suitable climate to grow your crops.
Additionally, some species are a threat to your crops: animals. Deer can eat seven pounds within a day. It is advisable to put fences around the crops to protect them from animals.
Always market crops you grow on your farm. For that, you must measure demand and competition in the market. Visit the local market of farmers. See what existing farmers are not selling and fill the gap with your products. If possible, buy a farm nearby your market, restaurants. You can also drive to local markets to sell your products.
It is good to add an extra income stream to maintain financial stability. Extra income brings a high yield from the farm during the right season. It also gives you the desired lifestyle. With thorough planning, you can generate many income streams from your farm. Some of the ways are beekeeping, cut flowers etc.
On your farm, keep some space for harvesting flowers. You can earn $30,000 from selling cut flowers per acre, according to Profitable Plants. The business of selling flowers is lucrative, including cut flowers. There are many uses for flowers. Additionally, flowers attract native pollinators to your garden. Pollination helps in the production of plentiful fruits in gardens. The pollinators leave your garden less vulnerable to dangerous pests. Moreover, few flowers in a bouquet will bring the buyers to your farm stand.
Animals like goat chicken can bring tons of benefits than you know. If you have spare land, raise some poultry animals. "With the rise in eggs prices and dangerous pesticides, raising chicken is a viable solution'', according to Virginia Estates. Chicken manure fertilizes your vegetable bed. Ducks and chickens swallow insects that can ruin your garden. Let's not forget the financial incentives of chicken. One chicken egg can get you up to $6 per dozen.
Raising goats is also beneficial. Goat milk is a popular commodity. The demand for goat milk has never lessened. You will earn lots of money from selling goat milk. You can earn $4.50 per gallon of goat milk. Apart from goat milk, goat cheese brings more profit to you. It also consumes any unsold milk. You must know that raising a goat requires a regular time commitment.
The last and one of the popular streams to earn revenue is horse boarding in Virginia. It is important to note that horse boarding requires a large infrastructure. If you want few horses for personal use, you can buy affordable shelter. If you are looking to earn income from horse boarding, you will need equipment for your customers.
Now you know the type of farm you want. Let's dive into the financing phase- a crucial phase. You will need finances to buy a farm, equipment, seeds, animals, utilities, taxes. Before purchasing your farm, you must create a concrete plan. After that, search for funding opportunities. You can get funding from many places- associations, banks, federal programs, state. All you need is a clear vision to present before investors.
In a nutshell, Virginia is an ideal place for farming. Every year, many farmers move to Virginia to start farming businesses. As told earlier, farming is the most profitable business. You can earn tons of money. In the initial phase, you might encounter challenges. With consistency and dedication, you will achieve success in your endeavour. Before entering the field, create an effective plan for your business. Decide your goals and plan strategies to achieve them. Without a plan, many obstacles will come in your way.
Finally, move to Virginia and avail the funding opportunities. Once you are in, follow the above nine tips for moving to Virginia and starting the farm. These tips will set up a path for you to start your farming business and earn a livelihood. Once you set up your farm, the sky is the limit. You will live a healthy and luxurious life.
About Truman Perkins
Truman Perkins is a Detroit-based SEO consultant who's been in the business for over a decade. He got his start helping friends and clients get their websites off the ground, and he continues to do so today. In his free time, Truman enjoys learning and writing about gardening - something he believes is a natural stress reliever. He lives with his wife, Jenny, and their twins in Detroit.