Audra Owen stands in front of the grapevines, only a tiny part of her garden, which is now a multi-layered family hobby farm. From January through April, she starts most of her plants from seed inside the house under grow lights. When winter is over, Audra’s dad, Matt, tills the garden for her. She and Matt work together during planting season. After everything is harvested in late fall, they plant winter wheat in the garden and raised beds. As a natural fertilizer, it adds biomass to the soil. The family lets the chickens graze on the wheat, providing them a good protein source in the winter. The chickens also fertilize the garden. Audra gets seed catalogs in the mail, and then talks to her dad about plants she wants to try. (Carol Mowdy Bond)
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Rodney Wilson, senior editor for Hobby Farms and Chickens magazines, is a writer, editor and hobby farmer. His family farm, the Kentucky-based Goldfinch Farm, has raised Berkshire pigs, Dexter cattle, meat chickens and laying hens, but these days is focused on self-sustenance and beekeeping. Rodney lives in the Cincinnati, Ohio, area with his wife, a whole mess of kids and too many pets. FOLLOWMORE ARTICLES
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