A while back when we were living in France and didn’t know where we would end up, I started a Pinterest board call “Backyard Dream Farm”. I let this be the place where all my ideas went, from the practical to the completely wild. I still add to it and go back to it as well.
So fast forward to now and we have our own house and the freedom and (some) means to do what we like with it, so I thought I would take you all on a tour of our little urban farm in the making. I’d call it a homestead, but we aren’t really homesteading, not like some people I admire! We are just at the wee beginnings, but it will all turn out beautifully I think.
Here we are in the larder, which is actually our side room with screened windows so it is quite cool in the winter (I’ll need to cover the windows somehow to make it a bit cooler in the summer). I need to develop some sort of better system for storing food long term here; I need cool and dark and that I don’t have anywhere in the house… I wish I could build a root cellar.
Outside the larder is our newly built firepit. I built this because we have no fireplace in this house and we still have a 1/4 cord or wood left from last year, so we have to use it somehow. This pit is much deeper than it looks here and probably won’t be used very often because this year is predicted to be very mild and warmer (trying not to feel miffed that even our slightly chilly winter might be going away). But I should be grateful that we don’t get the polar vortex right?!
Moving on out into the yard we have the fall/winter garden. There are a total of 9 beds with space for one more. We have over 200 sq. feet of growing space. I look forward to seeing the development of the garden over the coming years.
Just outside of the garden is the girl’s playspace. D just built this sandbox this weekend. Yes I said it, D built the sandbox himself, I only helped with some lifting. As you know most of the time it’s me going around doing all these things, but this time he took charge, so I wanted to make sure he got the credit! Behind their house is a small backyard with a bench and a flower garden just for them.
Directly across from the playhouse and sandbox is the mud kitchen. We recently connected a good hose with a wand that allows you to keep the water open without the water leaking out. So when you are ready to all you have to due to press on the handle lever and it exuberantly sprays out. This has really helped the girls play more with the mud kitchen. Before they would open the faucet and water would come rushing out and they would run away. Now we won’t be wasting water!
Let’s go all the way to the back of the yard where the compost bin is. You may notice I moved it from the garden to the back of the yard due to some mice and flies. Since there is a faucet close by and compost gets dry so quickly here I have put a hose there so that everytime I go out to dump something I can water it too. It helps alot. I’m less lazy about the compost now. And you know what, all the stuff is actually composting! Yippie!
Last but not really, is the future home of our chicken coop. This old tool shed is perfect for a chicken coop: we’ll be removing two walls and replacing them with wire to make it open and airy, since very rarely we get down to freezing here (and only at night when they are snuggled inside) they need more ventilation than protection from the cold. Around the coop we’ll put up a run with lots of space. There is even a faucet nearby for easy watering and cleaning.
What else is in store? A laundry line, greywater system, small orchard of dwarf fruit trees, solar panels, a wood fired outdoor oven, rainwater harvesting system, and who knows what else. I don’t think we’ll have any other animals at this house beyond chickens. We live in the center of the city and I feel like goats or pigs should really have lots of space. Though mini nubian goats are something in my long term dreams!
Welcome to my backyard dream farm.