OUR BEGINNINGS WERE HUMBLE Looking across our place today there is a variety of livestock, an old orchard, raspberry vines, gardens, flocks of poultry everywhere, livestock dogs sprawled on pasture, and a cat prowling a barn. The sheep graze in the back pasture and the garden is covered in a thin layer of frost this morning.
I grew up at the edge of cattle country. Backed by a cattle ranch, we raised a few pigs and a steer every year to provide meat for our family. I spent more time on horseback than a bicycle, visited more cattle ranches than malls. Which is a lot different than where we are today. We back up to thousands of acres of BLM and monument lands, and raise livestock, milk goats and a dairy cow alongside raising our daughters in Southern Oregon.
Nestled alongside the Cascade Siskiyou National Monument is Crack O' Dawn Farm. We are almost 40 acres of silvopasture, seasonal creeks, and natural grasses. We work to repair soils, rotate pastures to keep animals on fresh grass as long as possible until the snows, and work on forest remediation. Composting is key here, as we work to create a small seasonal garden, and maintain an old apple orchard. This land all used to be a homestead back in the 40's, and the cattle areas were all cleared, the original house was taken down, but a few barns and sheds survive from the original occupants. We apply regenerative and sustainable farming practices to restore the soil, replant trees, increase plant biodiversity, recycle our own farm wastes, and bring back the vitality of our farm land. We do no use any chemicals or pesticides and work on removing invasive plant species by hand.