Best blogs about smallholdings
If you’ve ever dreamed of tilling the soil and rearing livestock on your own small patch of land, you’ll love these smallholding blogs and YouTube channels. Whether you’re serious about making small-scale farming your life, or just enjoy a good gardening read with your cuppa, these bloggers have plenty of humorous, informative content to share.
An English Homestead
Living as self-sufficiently as possible – isn’t that what smallholdings are all about? Kev Alviti, carpenter by trade, smallholder by nature, shares his experiences of living a traditional way of life steeped in nature and family values.
Kev’s blog is full of great ideas and tips. Ever considered making all your veg beds the same size? In his post ‘Row cover chicken run', Kev extols the virtues of interchangeable matting and frames, and even creates a mini chicken coop that he rotates from bed to bed. Genius.
Let’s Grow Wild
Planting trees on your smallholding might seem like a strange way to improve the land, but that’s just what Georgina at Let’s Grow Wild suggests. Find out how more trees mean cleaner water, better soil, a longer growing season for crops, and more.
A veritable treasure-trove of wildlife, farming, gardening, and animal husbandry articles and guides, Let’s Grow Wild is a must for anyone who loves the countryside and wants to know more about sustainable smallholding. Always fancied keeping bees? These guys provide the basic info you need to get started.
Clean Goat Smallholding
Smallholding is a heavy job, as a perusal of the list of yard and path laying materials arriving at Clean Goat Smallholding confirms. 6.5 tonnes of sand and gravel, 10 tonnes of slate, plus another 30 tonnes pencilled in for delivery... Plenty to keep husband and wife smallholders Emma and Steven busy. Then there’s the livestock, the crops and the workshops. Animal husbandry is a big part of their sustainable plan, and their blog has lots of tips for those new to raising livestock.
“This is our real life and our home, come on in,” says Emma who had always dreamed of a little farm to call her own.. Having transformed a traditional cottage and 5 acres of North Wales into a thriving operation, this couple also run workshops and Emmas blog features a monthly interview with fellow small business owners living rural lives and how they make a living from their smallholding.
If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to have your own smallholding, Liz’s blog has all the insights you’re looking for. Successfully managing a smallholding in beautiful Carmarthenshire, Liz and her husband generously share the trials and tribulations of life in the countryside and their journey towards self-sufficiency and permaculture.
From information about why they decided to escape the rat-race to sharing tips on how you can be more productive by planting fast-growing vegetables for quick harvests, there’s plenty of food for thought here. Liz explains that growing their own food has changed their diets dramatically, and that eating more seasonally has not only improved their health, but the health of their land too. Check out their award-winning YouTube channel for practical pointers and how-to guides.
My Home Farm
Have you ever considered using some of your autumn pumpkin crop for experimental home brewing? That’s just what Mars at My Home Farm did. His pumpkin beer is based on a traditional malt brew, but with the addition of some slow caramelised pumpkin from his own plot. The recipe looks intriguing and may very well turn out to be delicious.
Until they chucked in their jobs for a slower pace of life in the rural Welsh borders, Mars and Kirsten were stressed out city-dwellers. Theirs is a tale of DIY, renovation, sustainable living and a lot of gardening. Check out Mars’ shed transformation – every plot holder, whether large or small, needs plenty of storage space.
Higher Oak Farm
Here to tell you all about the birds, bees and eggs, the Robertson family at Higher Oak Farm in Cheshire has lots of advice to share. A visit to their site will help you to get to know your fowl - especially the rare breeds like Light Sussex (upright, alert, and usually docile), Norfolk Grey (active forager and good layer), and Old English Pheasant Fowl (exceptionally hardy and a solid layer, but flighty as they come). They also share lots of helpful tips on how to keep your chickens happy including preparing your coop for winter.
In transition to certified organic status, Higher Oak Farm belongs to Amelia and Kirk, a father and daughter partnership who both used to work in the sportswear business. Now they’re all about rearing the very best welfare produce at their 16-acre rare breeds chicken farm. If you’re passing, do check out their shop and bakery – or order a postal box for a special treat at home.
The Accidental Smallholder
Have you got smallholding-related questions? The guys at The Accidental Smallholder (TAS) know just how hard it is to acquire the wide range of skills required to be successful. That’s why they set up the TAS forum. A one-stop-shop for all your queries, it also introduces you to a wider community of like-minded people – a most valuable resource.
Rosemary Champion and her other half, Dan, farm a 12-acre holding in Angus, on the east coast of Scotland. There they keep Coloured Ryeland sheep, Shetland cattle, laying hens and table poultry. This blog has so much to offer, with everything from introductory guides to keeping sheep to a recipe for a sumptuous looking mushroom soup with parsley and garlic.
Could you inherit 40-acres of abandoned farmland and turn it into a sustainable organic business? If you like a challenge, you’ll enjoy reading about Geoff’s adventures at Brimwood Farm, Suffolk. From farming stock, but previously a city-dweller, there’s never a dull moment as Geoff brings this piece of the English countryside back to life.
Join Geoff as he shares 100 days of farming via his YouTube channel. This series is highly recommended viewing and offers a day-by-day taste of what farming from scratch is really like. Do also check out Geoff’s farm diary – you’ll love the pics of his first goat kid.
Our Smallholding Adventure
“It’s a really bittersweet feeling,” says Tracy at YouTube channel, Our Smallholding Adventure. She and partner Steven have gone to see the pigs one last time before they go off to the abattoir. Not only do the couple explain the role of these animals in regenerating the land, but also demonstrate how to butcher the pigs (but not the dispatch process). It’s great watching for anyone interested in livestock rearing and meat prep.
For a tour of the smallholding, check out Tracy’s video on how to be self-sufficient in vegetables which takes in their impressive veg plot and includes a round-up of what they plan to grow over the next year. Not sure how to weigh a pig? This is the video short for you! This channel offers a great insight into living on a smallholding in the countryside of the North East of England.
We hope you’ve enjoyed our selection of some of the best smallholding blogs and YouTube channels in the UK. If we’ve missed one of your favourites, do let us know via our social media pages.