Buying a Farm


To say someone had ‘bought the farm’ or ‘bought the plot’ or simply ‘bought it’ has had morbid connotations, for airmen in particular, since World War 1. It meant dying as a result of a crash or of being shot down. Many explanations for the term exist, including that compensation to a farmer whose land had been crashed into, or insurance following death of a farmer’s son, would enable the farm mortgage to be paid off. Or, perhaps, that it was a permanent retirement from flying such as would occur if, after leaving the service, a man had bought a farm. More likely is that it originally referred to the burial plot, and other refinements in understanding crept in later. World War I slang used ‘become a landowner’, and some earlier similar references go back to the 1800s.

Anyway, the farm we have just bought at Shongweni Farmers Market does not fall into those categories. Nor does it consist of land where crops grow such as our pictured purchase of pawpaws, as we call them, although they are a different species to the N American pawpaw Asimina triloba. They are Carica papaya, of Mexican and parts of S American origin, so perhaps should be known by us as papayas. What’s in a name? A papaya by any other name would taste as sweet.

No, the farm we wormed our way into buying, together with livestock, is one we put in the back of the car and brought home with us. Part of Sunday was spent in setting it up.  

Yes, we are now into vermiculture!

Actually, the vermiculture stage will last for about six months while we build up our ‘herd’, after which the primary aim is vermicomposting. Our garden will have a rich source of compost and worm tea for the plants to thrive on. No pictures of the actual Eisenia worms appear because, by the time I had deployed my camera, every red wiggly had wriggled completely out of sight.

© May 2017 Colonialist
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About colonialist

Active septic geranium who plays with words writing fantasy novels and professionally editing, with notes writing classical music, and with riding a mountain bike, horses and dinghies.
This entry was posted in Africa, DIY, Gardens and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to Buying a Farm

  1. Madhu says:

    Ha, not quite what I pictured 🙂 Good luck with the vermiculture Colonel.

    Like

  2. Arkenaten says:

    I considered going this route at one stage but realised the ”run off” from the bottom of the Koi Pond is probably good enough as a liquid fertilizer, especially if smell is anything to go by. All the same, I shall be watching your progress with very keen interest.

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    • colonialist says:

      I’m sure Koi wee works every bit as well as worm wee. The guppies and platies in our pond don’t produce the sorts of quantities needed.

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      • Arkenaten says:

        I feed it to the roses and the veggies. Seems okay.
        Our ”pond” produces a lot of fertilizer, enough that I have never considered ”buying out”.

        Liked by 1 person

        • colonialist says:

          That is good. Bought fertilizer is increasingly deficient in quality these days. Even the ones from vendors often haven’t been aged properly.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Arkenaten says:

            We also bury all veggie waste. And I am now covering the bare soil with grass cuttings to try to keep weeds down and improve the quality.
            Blog pal, Tish uses a no-dig method on her allotment in Much Wenlock, over in the UK. I am hoping for some better quality soil come the spring. Haven’t weeded for a few weeks already which is a bonus!

            Liked by 1 person

            • colonialist says:

              A compost heap is also a good idea. I had a good one going, but lately have taken the quicker method of disposal by burning in the braai. The piles were becoming excessive.

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  3. You are such a tease, Leslie. Caught us with that one 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Stephanie Haahjem says:

    Hahaha! Love it! Bought one for my son-out-law for his last birthday!

    Like

  5. de Wets Wild says:

    Ah no! I was already packing the car to come and visit you on the farm!

    😀

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  6. disperser says:

    So, like pasta, only livelier. Neat.

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  7. bulldog says:

    And here I thought you had become a major land owner about to plant sugarcane all over Natal… maybe you can plant a mielie in the bucket with the worms and reap your crop later… my son-in-law tried the worm farming… the worms increaded but I never saw any tea or compost producted by the blighters… but they did convert kitchen waste into nothing very quickly

    Liked by 1 person

    • colonialist says:

      Not quite on that scale! Which is safer, perhaps. I wouldn’t want to become eligible as a farm murder subject.
      Apparently it does need time and patience before the tea and compost reach harvesting quantities.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. slfinnell says:

    Wishing you all the best in your farming venture!! Glad the purchase of this farm was not related to anything in the ‘burial’ category! Except the burying of worms of course. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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