One woman, seven acres
Hi there. I've been reading this forum for nearly eight years, but am finally at the beginning of my first season of market growing. I bought seven acres adjacent to my home last summer, and I am trying to find equipment I can manage on my own for soil working. I think this year I am going to rent a tractor with a disc to break ground, or possibly hire someone local if I can get them in early enough to be useful. But I have a whole host of questions.
1) what temp does the soil need to be before I can disc it? I'm hoping to break ground in March...since I'm sowing flats now as if I already had a place to plant.
2) can you recommend mowers, walk behind tractors, tillers or any other soil working equipment that can be handled by an inexperienced woman of rather small stature? My partner has a Lesco mower and I can't even get my hand around the handles to run the darned thing. I've joked that with the long tradition of child labor in farming, you'd think equipment manufacturers would size things down a bit...
I want to take this chance to thank you all for your posts here which have been enormously helpful to me. You've fed my dream of market gardening and inspired me to take the first big plunge, buying my land. It's sloped, silty clay loam that has had hay taken off of it for the last twenty years and probably nothing put back, but I am so excited to become a steward of this little place.