When we came to Spain, 10 years ago, we had a vague notion of achieving a level of self sufficiency. You know the kind of thing – growing some vegetables, maybe keeping a few chickens …..
Work commitments and life in general meant that we just never seemed to get around to actually doing it, but about 12 months ago we bought 6 chickens and realised that the difference in eating a freshly laid egg as opposed to eating a supermarket bought egg was immense. This really rekindled our interest and this year we have taken the bull by the horns.
We have an olive field which we have badly neglected over the years and we decided to bring it back to life as Olive Tree Farm.
Our first task was to fence in the land and make it secure against predators.
This enabled us to move our chickens from the garden to their own enclosure (it also means that we can have some plants in the garden again). We built the chicken pen around a few olive trees to give them shade and built them a bigger chicken house.
The land was rotovated and irrigated and we built pens and housing for our livestock, which currently are – 3 pigs (1 male and 2 females), 3 rabbits (1 male and 2 females), 2 female goats, a sheep and around 17 chickens and these will provide us with our meat, eggs, milk and cheese in the coming months.
Our aim is to provide all our animals with plenty of space, good food and great care.
The land will also be used for organic vegetable growing and will provide fresh food for both us and our animals in the coming months and so we have been busy digging in plenty of manure and compost to ensure that the soil is in the best condition possible and we cannot wait to get planting.
Our bid for self sufficiency is in it´s very early stages and some of the learning curves are steep, but it is great fun.
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