Blog Archives:
Farm Planning

We have created this blog categorization system as a way to organize and preserve the daily blogs written about our farming life. We hope you find this categorization system helpful.

The following blog entries are all related in some way to the topic of farm planning. They may cover any one or more of the following topics:
crop planning
livestock planning
financial planning
pasture rotations
farm resource management

Or they may simply be essays about some general aspect of farm planning. We hope you find something useful here, or at least some pleasant reading.

If there is some way we can improve our archiving system, please Contact Us and we'll take your recommendations into consideration.


FCF Farm Planning Spreadsheet Template

Below is a link for a fairly involved Excel spreadsheet entitled FCF Master Calendar. It was built from a template called Market Farm Forms, a product of Marcie Rosenzweig and Full Circle Organic Farm in Auburn, CA. Since we purchased and downloaded that set of forms, we have made major changes and added a number of new sheets to provide the whole-farm planning tools we needed: crops management, livestock husbandry, soils and compost building, equipment purchase/maintenance, buildings construction/maintenance, etc.

The hyperlink below points to a ZIP file containing the Excel spreadsheet. By clicking on the link, you'll have the option to either Save, Open or Cancel your connection to that ZIP file. You'll need Winzip or something similar to open the spreadsheet.

We offer this Excel spreadsheet for folks who are trying to build a similar template for their own farm use. We welcome any feedback. But please be aware of the following:
1) it already works pretty darn well for our purposes, but your purposes might be very different. Substantial changes might be needed to make it work for you.

2) Once you download this spreadsheet and modify it, we can't be responsible for its content. We offer it as an educational tool only.

3) The original Market Farm Forms is still for sale, and we definitely don't want to step on those folks' efforts. So we only offer our much-changed version temporarily.

After all those disclaimers, we hope this is helpful to you!

Frog Chorus Farm Master Planning Calendar

Mo' Info, Mo' Betta'
March 10, 2011

Preview of this blog entry:
"It occurred to me after writing my previous blog entry that it’s not enough to merely say “there is a lot of information out there to help farmers run their farms more profitably.” That’s a general statement and without specific examples, it’s relatively worthless. So, today’s blog is devoted to listing and describing the sources of information that we’ve used in our own farm development efforts, and/or organizations who have helped farmers graduate from merely producing things to producing things profitably. This latter category is aimed at young and beginning farmers, but it is also applicable to anyone who has been running a small farm as a hobby effort, who is ready to move into profitable operations..."

Click here for the rest of this blog entry.

Great Expectations
March 8, 2011

Preview for this blog entry:
"I have heard it said, far too many times, that farming is the art of buying at retail and selling at wholesale. I have also heard it said that the best way to earn $1 million in farming is to start with $10 million. More succinctly, it all boils down to a lament that drives me crazy because I hear it so often: “there’s no money in farming.” Know what I say? “Hogwash.”

Click here to read the rest of this blog entry.

Charting A Course
January 26, 2011

Preview of this entry:
"I was out late tonight - something I do more and more often lately. Not because I like it, but because something important is afoot and I feel compelled to be a part of it all.

Farming is not merely growing something, selling something and calling it good. That is definitely part of it, but only a small part of it. Usually a much larger part of farming is forming and maintaining, the social, professional, and political ties that keep growers and livestock producers aware of each other's activities, challenges, goals, and concerns, so that we’re not working at cross purposes. It's also reaching out and forming partnerships with the families, businesses and communities who buy our products. Ironically, regional cooperation is needed to really preserve and promote local agriculture. It was a meeting along these lines that had me out so late tonight..."

Click here for the rest of this blog entry.

Fruitful Conversations
January 14,2011

Preview of this entry:
"I spent the day today doing what us Irish folk love doing most - talking to people. It wasn’t just social visiting, or gossiping, or trading tall stories over a pint down at the pub. It was substantial talk, the kind that changes how we move through the world. And it’s always such a privilege when we get to share in this kind of interaction.

The first conversation was with a woman having problems with coyotes raiding her large layer flock..."

Click here for the rest of this blog entry.

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Our Successful Farming and Ranching Books


The Chicken Coop Manual

We released our very first self-published book. The Chicken Coop Manual in 2014. It is a full color guide to conventional and alternative poultry housing options, including 8 conventional stud construction plans, 12 alternative housing methods, and almost 20 different design features. This book is available on and as a PDF download.  Please visit The Chicken Coop Manual page for more information. 

RCLL Cover

Rabbit Colonies: Lessons Learned

We started with rabbits in 2002, and we've been experimenting with colony management ever since.  Fast forward to  2017, when I decided to write another book, this time about colony management.  The book is chock-full of  practical information, and is available from both Amazon and as a PDF download. Please visit the Rabbit Colonies page for more information.

The Pastured Pig Handbook

We are currently working on our next self-published book: The Pastured Pig Handbook.  This particular book addresses a profitable, popular and successful hog management approach which sadly is not yet well documented.  Our handbook, will cover all the various issues involved with pastured hog management, including case studies of numerous current pastured pig operations.  If you have any questions about this book, please Contact Us.

Weblog Archives

We published a farm blog between January 2011 and April 2012. We reluctantly ceased writing them due to time constraints, and we hope to begin writing them again someday. In the meantime, we offer a Weblog Archive so that readers can access past blog articles at any time.

If and when we return to writing blogs, we'll post that news here. Until then, happy reading!