I estimate that we would conservatively need about 500 good farm managers and 10,000 skilled workers to successfully utilize 2 million acres of farmland. Of course these are just estimates. But even to make such estimates requires a lot of understanding of the science and business of farming, which is a lion’s step away from the art and hobby of gardening. So now I must begin to teach the science and business of farming to those of us who have made the first step into gardening.
In this book we discuss different aspects of farm management and what we have found about how good managers think and operate. The farm manager not only manages but farms as well. There is a difference. Gardening can help you understand the basic nature of the production process; however, in this book we show you the equipment that you need to farm and how to utilize that equipment when producing different crops.
You also need to understand that not all farms are the same. Most farms are highly specialized. The USDA has classified farms under broad categories of cash grain, field crop, vegetable and melon, fruit and tree nut, nursery and greenhouse, dairy, poultry and egg, and cattle/hog/sheep. So your first decision is to determine what type of farm are you going to set up?
A farm is more than just some land. It is a system which includes the infrastructure, buildings and equipment necessary to carry on the operations done on that land. When we purchased our 1600 acre “farm” in Georgia, there was no equipment or repair shop, just open land filled with large weeds. We decided to set up a farming operation growing cash grains and vegetable/melons. So in this book we use our farm in Georgia as a model to demonstrate what a farmer must know about decision making, production, marketing and finance.