|Welcome to the "Food Chain Farm" website. We're right there under the rainbow with the solar panels on the roof. (Photo courtesy of Jerry Kalman)
We're "hobby" farmers in the Southern California mountains. We moved here from Boston in 2003 and bought 3.5 acres with fruit trees from a retired engineer at HP. Since then we've gone totally organic, expanded the gardening with two dozen raised beds, added - and removed - fruit trees to suit our tastes and experimented with low impact irrigation and watering systems. We have been very successful growing some things, no so much in others, but we generally grow more than we need and donate the rest to the local food bank. We've tried to create an inviting environment for our favorite creatures like butterflies and hummingbirds. We've also had to deal with wildfires, torrential rain and landslides, earthquakes, pests, you name it - even hail storms!
The name "Food Chain Farm"? Well, we have found rabbit carcasses left by the hawks and watched them take out doves on the fly. The coyotes and owls help clean out the other pests. Our "wild" pet cat (below, with one of his catches) adopted us a few years ago and he scours the property for rodents, birds and lizards. So we daily watch the "food chain" in action - hence the name.
This website is really for us - to document the work on the farm and keep records and a calendar of seasonal work we need to remember. If you find it helpful or interesting - that's great! Just remember that what we write here is 1) our opinion, 2) particular to our location/property and 3) you should use the information here at your own discretion. (That's a "disclaimer" in case you decide to sue us for giving "bad advice"!)
Below are some of our pages - right now we are adding photos to the pages.
Why We Named It Food Chain Farm
Getting Garden Advice, Joys of The Local Farm Store
Gardening - Vegetables and Fruits
Going on Vacation
Climate, SoCal and Micro Climates
The SoCal "Seasons"
Spectacular skies, Hail in California
Wildfires: in 2007 they burned across the road from us
Water, Irrigation and the "Water Wars"
Strawberry Pesticide Wars
Preserving Food by Refrigeration and Dehydration
Living With The "Super Ant Colony"
Birds, The Behavior of Hummingbirds, a new way to look at hummingbirds, Feeding Orioles
New: The life cycle of Monarch butterflies at our farm.
Bees: we've still got 'em, but you can see the decline.
You can purchase our story of the Monarch Life Cycle here at Food Chain Farm for only $0.99 at the Apple iTunes store - https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/life-cycle-monarch-butterfly/id671515734?ls=1
Fruits & Vegetables, Root Cellars
Dealing With Animals: Coyotes, Raccoons, Ground Squirrels, Crows, Rattlesnakes, Bees, Bugs and Butterflies
The Sun: Friend or Foe?
The "Green Product Sellout"
|See where we are on the HPWREN Webcam (go to the West - W - camera): http://hpwren.ucsd.edu/cameras/RedMtn.html