I really liked your article
about neighbors helping out. Here, we are having trouble
with the city of Kyle, Texas expanding into rural areas regardless
of the impact on farmers. I have been certified organic since
1989 and the city has always given me a hard time for farming
on the outskirts of town. Their latest maneuver is now to
build an “outer loop,” which will take up our
front yard. Why? Because they need a major road to get to
another subdivision. We went from 2,500 to 16,000 in population
and are projected to go to 45,000 by 2007.
In fact it is so bad the president of the Chamber of Commerce
was quoted in the local newspaper saying that is best for
area farmers to sell their land and move to west Texas if
they want to continue their farming lifestyle. A letter to
the editor quickly followed. From that, I made a decision
to stop all sales to the area farmers markets and concentrate
on local CSA in Kyle so that I can get support from voting
people who will not want our farm to be taken out.
Local politicians need to support local farming by securing
their right to farm. To learn more about me, go to www.ssawg.org.
Go to “What we do,” then to “Organic farmer
network” and “farmer profiles” and look
up my name.
Tim P. Miller
I enjoyed your recent New Farm piece about neighbors.
I live in very rural Upstate New York where farming is the
leading industry. I am sad to say that we have very little
contact with our neighbors. Everyone always seems so busy
and then so tired after being so busy that there is little
time to connect.
However, there used to be a large dairy operation next door
(sad to say it has gone through several owners and now sits
fallow) that had, well, very lax outlooks about fence maintenance.
There were numerous times we had the farm’s Holsteins
in our yard and/or in the busy highway out front. It was very
easy for my wife and I to grab flashlights at night and try
to herd the cows back inside the fences and to keep cars from
hitting them in the night. I guess that is what neighbors
Writing this reminds me, that a previous owner – the
original owner, a family farmer – used to hold a “neighborhood”
picnic each summer for people living nearby. My wife and I
never went, though I suspect we would now; older and wiser.
Keep up the good work,
Thank you for the “community” article; beautifully
written and right on the money. May we all support and love
the earth and each other “all ways.” From a fellow
“borderless” farmer in Fairfield, Iowa!
Great day to you,
Have some questions to Ask Jeff? E-mail
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