First off, I appreciate you taking some time to stop by at my website. I really hope you learned something new or got an interesting idea. On this page, I want to share a bit about myself and why I did start this blog.
My name is Darian; I am the creator behind farmityourself.com. I love being outside, growing my own food, or just spending some time in the woods. I am by no means an expert gardener, I just love to learn new things along the way and share them here.
I grew up in a remote area in Germany. Our house was mostly surrounded by woods, in which I spend lots of my childhood. Luckily for me, I was able to learn the basics of gardening and foraging from my parents. Hunting wild Mushrooms and collecting Chestnuts was one of my favorite things to do back then, and I still love it!
I always loved the outdoors and growing food has been something I wanted to do, no matter what. After reading “The Complete Book of Self-Sufficiency” from John Seymour I felt inspired to learn as much as I can about farming so that one day I can live the dream of owning a farm.
After finishing High-school, I started my journey to work towards this goal actively. First, I applied for an internship on a small organic farm close to the place I lived. I am very grateful for the time I was able to spend there and the things I learned.
This farm is operated entirely by one person named, George. There were a lot of things to learn: Sowing, maintaining the growing beds, and harvesting are just some of them. The most valuable lessons George taught me were the things behind the scenes. He was eager to share how he managed the farm; What should I keep in mind before starting my farm? How do I approach starting one? What are the risks and challenges? I am grateful for all the input I got because now I knew what I had to do next.
I need to get more practical experience. A family friend operates a Winery in St. Katherine close to Cologne, Germany. After a bit of talking, we agreed that I could work and live there for I while. I had a great time; learning a lot about grapes and winemaking; As well as the things that go along with them like packaging, distribution, and marketing. Clipping grapevines was my main task there, but seeing the pruning process and the spraying was also very interesting (both mechanically).
At this point I really started to enjoy learning about different crops and farming methods. I wanted to see a wider range of operations, and learn about farming in different countries. So my journey took me to Australia.
The first farm I worked on was Shamrock gardens, a desert farm in the middle of no-where. It was located 120km (75miles) south from Broom, WA. and a large scale operation, growing mainly watermelons and pumpkins. It was amazing to see the difference between this farm and the ones I’ve been on prior. Anyway, there I worked mostly as a Bin-driver, but often got out to do some picking and packing as well. Again I had a great time there, got to know some fantastic people (-We traveled together afterward), and learned a lot of new things.
November came around, and the rain season started. At this point, we began to travel -by car- from Broom to Melbourne, along the coastline of Australia. I’ll skip ahead a bit here. The next farm I worked on was a small Winery in Broke, NSW. I met some of the locals in Bulga; they offered me to stay at their house. In turn, I helped to take care of their garden. One day Rob, the owner of the house, took me along to one of his job sites to the Running Horse Winery, which was still under construction at the time. Luck was on my side again; the owner of the winery was offering me a job to maintain his property. I accepted and worked a couple of hours a week on the farm, another few in Rob’s garden, and met some other amazing people in and around Bulga. One day Rob took me along to visit one of his friends, who lived almost entirely self-sufficient. To make a long story short, I am very grateful for the things I got to see, and the knowledge, all of the people in Bulga were so eager to share.
After a while, I decided to move on. So I looked for another farm to spend the rest of the time I had left. I got a job on a cattle ranch, 150km (93miles) south of Cunnamulla. My time there was very interesting, to say the least. After a few days of introducing me to my tasks, the owner Mic left me to do my work -alone-. We kept contact via Mail, but for the most part, I had to figure things out myself. Only occasionally, someone helped me out (some tasks need at least two people). I learned a lot there, the challenges of being a farmer in the middle of nowhere; Handling the responsibility of caring for 700 heads of cattle. Solving problems, I sometimes didn’t have the slightest clue of how to approach. It was a formative experience, and I am happy to take it with me back to Germany.
Back in Germany, I wanted to continue learning new things about farming and growing food. Again I got quite lucky, to get hold of a small fenced property, not far away from where I live. This Garden was a bit dilapidated when I got it, but I am very grateful for the opportunity to have my own growing space.
I spend a lot of time to clean up the place, prepare some growing beds, and planting a lot of different crops. I also started farmityourself.com at this time, so I can share the things I learn along the way. It was great to work in my own garden, and I was happy everything worked out great so far.
However, if I wanted to start a farm, then this small garden won’t be enough. I began to look around for some more sizable properties, preferably with a bit of forest, to get a grasp of how much money I have to save up. To achieve this goal, I started to study nutrition science – another passion of mine- and work full-time to earn a bit of an income. I realize that starting a farm is something, I can’t just do over-night. I’ve read a lot of amazing stories from people who made it work, but I want to approach this one step at a time. So that’s where I am today. Until I finish my studies, I will continue to learn new things about farming and share them here on my blog, whenever I have some free time. I hope that I can help out other growers, and maybe inspire someone to pursue their path to start a farm.
I would be thrilled to hear your story and how you got inspired to grow your food. Or the things you learned while doing so. You can drop me a message if you like, and I’ll get back in touch as soon as possible.
Let me show you a bit more:
Selling perennials on a local farmers market
My Blackberries during summer
Growing some Brussels Sprouts and Beans:
Growing Squash and Zucchini
Jostaberry and Currants
Our 2 goats Hänsel and Gretel
Taking a close look
Going on a Mushroom Hunt