DaNelle, of Weed Em and Reap shows what’s possible on just ONE acre in the middle of suburbia Arizona. Goats, sheep, gardens and a budding food forest.



we were driving through Phoenix Arizona on our great American Farm to her it's like so many cities in America full of traffic huge lots of people little area and then we get to the sort of that outside of Phoenix didn't we pull into the neighborhood were to go to and feature on this tour and I'm looking around and thinking hey this looks really nice I'm totally surprised she's allowed to have goats chickens basically a micro farm here in this very nice neighborhood and then I saw four cows fuck this must be the coolest neighborhood in the world and then we got two dead now [Music] what we're trying to do here on an acre is everything you would do on a big scale just miniaturized so we knew that we had this front yard space in suburbia you'll have big front yards that are just have inedible plants and maybe even rock here in the desert but we wanted as many trees in the front yard as we could so this is kind of a couple years of work here for us we still earned and still growing but we've got I think in the front yards got 20 fruit trees and then we've got 10 more in the back but yeah it's pretty exciting stuff to kind of change your front yard into more of a food forest about 10 years ago I was dealing with a bunch of health problems and then my son Ethan we found out he had asthma and so we felt like a wreck you know we just weren't we weren't really living our life's potential and so we got into eating healthier that was kind of the the first starting point towards hey maybe we should grow our own food let's just go let's go to the garden it's exciting because like there's something I mean you can just put an animal in your yard and there's some fulfillment from that but being able to like grow your own food that's huge you know that's like that's like the ultimate man put a seed in the ground actually grow something edible that's pretty cool all right so this is really fun because this is our this is this year's new adventure we actually watched your video with the JM Fortier Market Garden and I've already I've also I've kind of always known about the whole wood ship back to eatin method but I people don't really do that here because we have really invasive grass so a lot of people hate to plant and ground because it'll just become covered with grass so I thought hey let's just combine both of those methods and it's so far done really great so I think as we keep going though you know you know how doesn't gardening soil will just keep getting better so yeah it's been really fun to try this out we knew we were gonna garden in this area so we put the goats chickens everything in here for a good six months let him just kill the Bermuda you don't kill the grass and stomp it down poop on it and all that stuff so they really prepped it for us we just had to come in and build the rows we started to look around our area you know here in Arizona where could we find a place that would be affordable that could you know we could grow our own food and so we searched and searched and we found the perfect piece of junk house but it was on an acre and it had mature gorgeous trees and we thought like this is it we're gonna we're gonna do this so we moved here and we started with the whole few chickens and a goat and then I learned you have to have to go throats one go just cries and screams old times and we just slowly started getting deeper and deeper into growing our own food and so now what are these restraining cunts doing in the middle of Suburbia don't tell me you're processing your own chickens here usually every other year will raise a bunch of chickens and then put them up in our freezer and so these are these are killing cones here for when we need to put you our chickens it's a it's interesting to do it in suburbia people don't expect you to be doing that but the neighbors peeking over the fence yeah oh yeah gonna say no they don't set I think people are pretty down-to-earth here they they come from families that used to farm so but it's just a generational gap they haven't really done it themselves it's been awesome I mean now we have you know goats that we milk and we raise our own meat and we raise our own we have our own eggs and then we have fruits and vegetables and this yesterday we tried to plant our first grain all right well welcome to our pasture no this is um since our whole area is an acre this is about a half acre and it is enough least we know it's enough to raise two Lambs every year the goats get kind of supplemented so we're not sure if they would really totally survive on this but it's it's perfect amount for us for a family for but it's not without its struggles we one of the biggest challenges of growing here is the heat so while we can grow year-round part of that year is pretty tough so there's a few things that we do here if you're gardening here in Arizona you know that you're doing a deep mulch system you have to so people have got anywhere from six inches to a foot of mulch over their gardens to help retain moisture another trick is we use a lot of coconut coir to help retain moisture in our if we're doing any kind of above-ground beds but then we'll also string up these shade cloths over our garden to just help help us be able to grow anything during July and August here so that's kind of a struggle and there are other little struggles here and there especially growing on a small area you know we live in town so we have some restrictions you know we can't have more than you know 50 chickens or more than eight goats stuff like that now we've not seen this on a tour a big concrete ditch going through somebody's yard what's up with that yeah so this is arizona's irrigation system and the Hohokam Indians actually built this years ago and then the people that settled this area I just kind of continued with it so what this does is it brings water it's just a full gravity system reading the water from the lake down to all the homes that's it yeah and we just let the water in when it's our time come through it's a few hours this whole place will be flooded all right irrigation son oh man I was gonna come in and swim in it at the edge get cooler Oh oh my gosh oh good in the shade you know you guys used to play in this irrigation every two weeks now you're too old oh so sad and then he sticks it in there and so then we stop it this stops it from going in our yard but then lets it continue on so now he's gonna lift this up go away it goes all the way down yay so that's it we've got the whole backyard like this we want lots of shade here shade is everything here in Arizona and so when we built this area we actually to take a tree down which was a big bummer for us because it's just it's something like 20 degrees cooler you know under shade so we instead planets and new trees but of course the goats are going to destroy them so we made this little pallet wall around it works pretty good all right so we usually don't have predators here but there are some hawks that will get our chickens early in the morning or maybe an owl so we do lock them up at night and then every morning hey Jess come on we just love the little goats we think they're perfect for a small setting like this we love the mills we love their personalities so so this is primarily our just our pride and joy we love them because they're really good stock really good registration and breed and and lines and so we're excited about the potential with them we are phasing out our Nubian and so we're just we're just excited we love these little mini milkers so the best and we have one do actually this little one this fat one in the back she's due in a couple of weeks here you see we have this shade because the Sun will come in right here and during the summer it's just brutal but yeah just our little area that we bring our goats up and milk and it's just kind of perfect cuz it's like middle ground you know we walked just steps from our backyard get the milk left the mountain the pasture it's perfect these are my tropical trees now this has been really fun because we live in the desert and you would think that we couldn't grow tropical trees here but you actually can we have avocados mangos and bananas right now and then we'll probably add more we have a loquat that's a little bit subtropical but yeah it's it's cool it's it's interesting because as you start to get into like planting trees you'll notice that there are different microclimates within your climate so this area back here where we have these gorgeous huge 30 year old shade trees combined with the irrigation that comes through creates sort of this it's like really really cool spot like temperature-wise very very cool and so it's perfect for growing these kind of trees here and they thrive so it's kind of fun to be doing that here in the desert in the future what we want to do is just do things better and become more of a master at gardening and the next big adventure we're going to do is we're hoping to build a natural pond on our property so that we can raise our own fish as well so the goal is to just round it all out and have every little bit of what you'd find on a big farm right here in the city so the the rumor is the the legend is that a cowboy was traveling from Mexico and he dropped an avocado pit and the avocado for some reason grew on its own without any nurturing and it's a massive 100 year old you know 50 foot high avocado tree in the middle of the desert and so people go to like tour it and look at it and stuff and so they allowed people to take cuttings they allow Sheamus to take cuttings and he started dispersing them to people in the valley and so now there are lots of people here growing what they call the Arizona avocado

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