Infrastructure, you've got to have it to be successful farming, the conundrum is how much. Not enough and you don't have what you need to accomplish the tasks and too much requires maintenance, time and capital. Every one's situation is different and no one model fits every farm. Our goal has been to build what we can afford while being mindful we may want to add on at a later date. We have purposely remained small and have elected to build on a scale we can handle ourselves. For instance, our hoop houses are 16x48 ft and two people can cover a hoop house without additional assistance.
Some of the things I worked on this summer was increasing the size of our equipment pole barn and increasing hoop house space. The barn and other construction projects this fall are in large part why I have been remiss in blog entries. The original barn was built in 2007. It was roughly 24x36 ft, 3 bays, 6x6 poles with a 5v tin roof. I would have preferred to have made it larger at the time, but with the cost of materials and other higher priority projects, the size was kept smaller with plans to increase it at a later date.
Here's a picture of the original barn with the new addition just starting.
The 3 new bays prior to the roof being added.Here is a picture of the new addition's sheathing and rafters with the old roof.
A look from the old roof to the new roof sheathing.
I had a roofing company bend a couple of pieces of the 5v tin on a "break" to make the transition from the old roof level to the new roof level, this keeps rain from blowing in the side between the roofs.
I added some basic lighting and a couple of electrical outlets to make life easier.
Here is a shot of the barn with the new addition. I plan to add a couple more bays a few years from now when we out grow this space.
We also built another hoop house this year.