This year we spent much of the summer working on infrastructure; irrigation, outbuildings and fencing. It is a balance keeping out the wildlife that makes living in the Animas River valley so special. While our gardens were a little on the experimental side we built 30 raised beds and look forward to growing heirloom crops in 2018.
We planted some native corn that has been cultivated for over 500 years. This throwback ear (above) grew from the top of the plant where the tassel is.
By selecting heirloom seeds each year we will help preserve old varieties of crops, ensuring their survival.
Permaculture Farming: By carefully planting crops on the farm and rotating our grazing animals, our land will be improved and protected.
- Planned Crops: Native corn – Scott has been growing Mohawk white corn for 14 years. This ancient variety is flavorful and nutritious. He has also experimented by cross-breeding native strains to find ones that grow well in this climate and altitude.
Industrial hemp is one of the most useful plants known to man. Scott has been experimenting with a few varieties to find the most useful for local farmers or gardeners. You can learn about the uses and growing techniques. Learn to grow and process the plant for your own uses.
- Orchard: The farm has over 60 fruit trees, a large proportion of which are heirloom varieties. The trees have suffered from a long period of neglect. We are using various means of restoring them to health and productivity. Proper pruning is critical. Some of our on-farm sessions will focus on the orchard, berries, and companion planting.
- Integrated management: Two Bears Farm is home to a small flock of Navajo Churro sheep. Using holistic management techniques, we graze hard in small areas and move them as required. We also use the old technique of using the livestock to glean and fertilize the cropping areas. Our farm management sessions will give insights into the most efficient practices.