“Everyone will have a different approach to keeping a self-sufficient homestead, and it’s unlikely that any two 1-acre farms will follow the same plan or methods or agree completely on how to homestead. Some people like cows; other people are afraid of them. Some people like goats; other people cannot keep them out of the garden. Some people will not slaughter animals and have to sell their surplus stock off to people who will kill them; others will not sell surplus stock off at all because they know that the animals will be killed; and still others will slaughter their own animals to provide their family with healthy meat.
For myself, on a 1-acre farm of good, well-drained land, I would keep a cow and a goat, a few pigs and maybe a dozen hens. The goat would provide me with milk when the cow was dry. I might keep two or more goats, in fact. I would have the dairy cow (a Jersey) to provide the pigs and me with milk. More importantly, I would keep her to provide heaps and heaps of lovely cow manure to increase my soil fertility, for in order to derive any sort of living from that 1 acre without the application of a lot of artificial fertilizer, it would have to be heavily manured.”
Read more: http://www.motherearthnews.com/modern-homesteading/self-sufficient-homestead-zm0z11zkon.aspx#ixzz1tooUZR8n
In our S2MFC “whole community” vision … we feel the one big drawback is lack of a larger community of independent micro-farms and homesteads that also operated interdependently, augmenting each other as a micro-farming system within the same developed area… A whole-community approach to sustainability.
It is a very tough haul alone unless someone in the house has a full time job… even then its tough and who knows what’s going to happen to that full time job in the future.
In our whole-community-based (NOT a commune) sustainability development vision we have a min of 2 acre homesteads/micro-farms and up to 5 plus acres lots.
We also dedicate acreage to the whole-community for common grazing and potentially some acreage for common crop growth which would augment and buffer in tough times and could also be used for dedicated outside sales.
The prototype community is seen as a min of 20 families and max of 30 on 2, 3, 4 or 5 acre lots on a total Phase 1 development acreage of 200 acres. A community operated Farmer’s Market is also a significant revenue source for the each independent micro-farmer’s. A “group” wholesale sales channel would also be developed by the community for outside sales to local restaurants, caterers, and commissaries.