Why I started with tarps!

[et_pb_section fb_built=”1″ admin_label=”section” _builder_version=”3.0.74″ background_color=”#ffffff” custom_padding=”||0px|” custom_padding_tablet=”||0px|” transparent_background=”off” padding_mobile=”on”][et_pb_row custom_padding=”||0px|” padding_mobile=”on” column_padding_mobile=”on” parallax_method_1=”off” admin_label=”row” _builder_version=”3.0.48″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″ _builder_version=”3.0.47″ column_padding_mobile=”on” parallax=”off” parallax_method=”off”][et_pb_divider show_divider=”off” height=”110″ disabled_on=”on|on|on” admin_label=”Divider” _builder_version=”3.2″ hide_on_mobile=”on”][/et_pb_divider][et_pb_text disabled_on=”on|on|on” admin_label=”Text” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ text_font=”PT Sans|on|||” text_text_color=”#bcbcbc” text_letter_spacing=”2px” background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” text_orientation=”center” module_alignment=”center” custom_margin=”||0px|” custom_padding=”||0px|” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” disabled=”on”]SCA FARMS
[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Post Title” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ text_font=”PT Sans||||” text_text_color=”#1d1d1d” text_font_size=”72″ text_font_size_tablet=”52″ text_font_size_last_edited=”on|desktop” text_line_height=”1.1em” background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” text_orientation=”center” max_width=”660px” module_alignment=”center” custom_margin=”18px||80px|” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]Why I started with tarps
[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section fb_built=”1″ admin_label=”Section” _builder_version=”3.0.74″ background_color=”#f7f7f4″ custom_padding=”0px|||” custom_padding_tablet=”0px|||” transparent_background=”off” padding_mobile=”on”][et_pb_row use_custom_width=”on” custom_width_px=”620px” custom_padding=”0px|||” padding_mobile=”on” column_padding_mobile=”on” parallax_method_1=”off” parallax_method_2=”off” admin_label=”row” _builder_version=”3.0.48″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″ _builder_version=”3.0.47″ column_padding_mobile=”on” parallax=”off” parallax_method=”off”][et_pb_image src=”http://scafarms.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/scafarms045_20170725-e1507913398562.jpg” show_bottom_space=”off” align=”center” admin_label=”Author Image” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ border_width_all=”0px” border_color_all=”#457a0c” border_style_all=”solid” max_width=”100px” custom_margin=”-48px|||” use_border_color=”on” border_color=”#457a0c” border_style=”solid” animation=”off” sticky=”on”][/et_pb_image][et_pb_text admin_label=”Post Author” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ text_font=”PT Sans||||” text_text_color=”#323232″ text_font_size=”18″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” text_orientation=”center” module_alignment=”center” custom_margin=”14px||0px|” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]Stefan Holt, SCA Farmer
[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Post Date” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ text_font=”PT Sans|on|||” text_text_color=”#363636″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” text_orientation=”center” module_alignment=”center” custom_margin=”0px|||” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]22 February 2018
[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row use_custom_width=”on” custom_width_px=”620px” custom_padding=”0px|||” padding_mobile=”on” column_padding_mobile=”on” parallax_method_1=”off” parallax_method_2=”off” admin_label=”row” _builder_version=”3.0.48″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″ _builder_version=”3.0.47″ column_padding_mobile=”on” parallax=”off” parallax_method=”off”][et_pb_text admin_label=”Post Excerpt – Intro Paragraph” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ text_font=”PT Serif||||” text_text_color=”#363636″ text_font_size=”24″ text_font_size_last_edited=”on|tablet” background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” max_width=”620px” custom_margin=”40px||0px|” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]The fence was falling apart. The horses were gone. Things were not normal in the pasture. There I was staring out into two acres. “So what the hell am I going to do now?” I thought. In the background, you can hear the squawk of a few chickens and the rattle of a few rabbit cages, as two of the four stalls in the barn still had animal life present. But what was I to do with the land? The empty stalls?
[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row custom_width_px=”830px” use_custom_gutter=”on” gutter_width=”2″ custom_padding=”50px|||” custom_padding_tablet=”17px|||” padding_mobile=”on” column_padding_mobile=”on” custom_padding_last_edited=”on|tablet” parallax_method_1=”off” parallax_method_2=”off” admin_label=”Row” _builder_version=”3.0.48″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”][et_pb_column type=”3_4″ _builder_version=”3.0.47″ column_padding_mobile=”on” parallax=”off” parallax_method=”off”][et_pb_image src=”http://scafarms.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/IMG_0402.jpg” show_bottom_space=”off” align=”center” force_fullwidth=”on” admin_label=”Header Image” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” animation=”off” sticky=”on”][/et_pb_image][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_4″ _builder_version=”3.0.47″ column_padding_mobile=”on” parallax=”off” parallax_method=”off”][et_pb_divider color=”#aeaeac” admin_label=”Divider” _builder_version=”3.2″ custom_css_main_element=”width:130px;” hide_on_mobile=”off”][/et_pb_divider][et_pb_text admin_label=”Header Title” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ text_font=”PT Serif||on||” text_text_color=”#363636″ text_font_size=”16″ text_line_height=”1em” background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” max_width=”130px” custom_margin=”20px||0px|” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]The pasture just after first tarp
[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Picture SubTitle Date Stamp” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ text_font=”PT Serif||on||” text_text_color=”#363636″ text_font_size=”12″ text_line_height=”1.2em” background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” max_width=”130px” custom_margin=”6px|||” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]Photo taken March 2017
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What next?

We had already converted one stall into a chicken coop. It was makeshift but it kept the chickens dry and protected. But what next?
I looked out onto the pasture and started picturing some of the things I had seen in a recent video by Curtis Stone, the self proclaimed urban farmer. His neighbor hood farm sites were spectacular with a lot of greens.  Packed ever so tightly in well maintained rows and hoop houses littered the aerials from above. Wait? Hoop houses. What the heck are hoop houses and why are they useful.
I started searching his other videos on hoop houses, plot layout, irrigation, planting, seeds, and more. Needless to say it inspired me to think about what was possible in my own backyard. I looked into Market Gardener J.M. Fortier and his home farm. A lot bigger in design and much greater use of equipment. Namely the BCS tractor. What intrigued me was the use of tarps on his farm.
That’s where I would start. Turning a horse pasture into a vegetable field would start with a single tarp and God.
A tarp, specifically a 40′ x 100′ 5 mil UV-treated polyethylene silage tarp, is a great tool on SCA Farms for many reasons.
1) Low Tech Solution – Requires little effort
Aside from actually ordering and rolling out the tarp, this is about as low tech a solution to turning a plot into a garden bed as you can get. If time is not important, this is about the easiest thing you can do.
2) Kills weeds 100%
More effective than costly, poisonous sprays, this solution is 100% effective in killing weeds, grass, and anything else that needs the sun to grow. The tarp creates a warm environment that kills weeds that are present and it helps to encourage other weed seeds to germinate. When they do, they have not sunlight to support them and thus, a quick death.  The process is called solarization and leaves no chemical residues. Check out this link about solarization and all the great benefits.
3) Tarps mimic nature
Once a one of these tarps was placed over the pasture, mother nature quickly took over. Heat and lack of sunlight kills the green matter and the process of decomposition starts.  I liken it to a forest floor. When leaves cover an area of grass the sun is essentially blocked out. Once blocked the grass starts to breakdown and then come natures’ compost machines. The earthworm. These guys are a farmer’s best friend. The more of these guys you have the better your soil.
In 3-4 weeks depending on the time of year, your green pasture will be a heavily composted stale seed bed ready for the next phase of the farming process. If you want to try using a silage tarp yourself, I recommend using Farmer’s Friendly LLC We bought our first tarp from these guys and did not regret it one bit.

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row use_custom_width=”on” custom_width_px=”620px” custom_padding=”50px|||” padding_mobile=”on” column_padding_mobile=”on” parallax_method_1=”off” admin_label=”Row” _builder_version=”3.0.48″ background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″ _builder_version=”3.0.47″ column_padding_mobile=”on” parallax=”off” parallax_method=”off”][et_pb_divider color=”#aeaeac” admin_label=”Divider” _builder_version=”3.2″ hide_on_mobile=”off”][/et_pb_divider][et_pb_text admin_label=”Post Main Quote” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ text_font=”PT Serif||||” text_text_color=”#363636″ text_font_size=”32″ text_font_size_last_edited=”on|tablet” text_line_height=”1.3em” background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” max_width=”900px” custom_margin=”16px||30px|” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]”Aside from actually ordering and rolling out the tarp, this is about as low tech a solution to turning a plot into a garden bed as you can get.”
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[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ text_font=”PT Sans||||” text_text_color=”#ffffff” text_font_size=”24″ text_line_height=”1.2em” background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” text_orientation=”center” module_alignment=”center” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]Farmers Market info
and lessons learned
[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″ _builder_version=”3.0.47″ column_padding_mobile=”on” parallax=”off” parallax_method=”off”][et_pb_image src=”http://scafarms.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/scafarms044_yyyymmdd-date.jpg” url=”#” align=”center” force_fullwidth=”on” admin_label=”Learn to Grow Image” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” animation=”off” sticky=”off”][/et_pb_image][et_pb_text admin_label=”Learn to Grow Title” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ text_font=”PT Sans|on|||” text_text_color=”#888888″ text_font_size=”12″ text_letter_spacing=”2px” text_line_height=”1.2em” background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” text_orientation=”center” module_alignment=”center” custom_margin=”30px|||” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]LEARN TO GROW
[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ text_font=”PT Sans||||” text_text_color=”#ffffff” text_font_size=”24″ text_line_height=”1.2em” background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” text_orientation=”center” module_alignment=”center” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]Starting a new Garden?
Tips and Proven Techniques
[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″ _builder_version=”3.0.47″ column_padding_mobile=”on” parallax=”off” parallax_method=”off”][et_pb_image src=”http://scafarms.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/scafarms007_yyyymmdd-date.jpg” url=”#” align=”center” force_fullwidth=”on” admin_label=”Produce Pick of the Week Image” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” animation=”off” sticky=”off”][/et_pb_image][et_pb_text admin_label=”Pick of the week title” _builder_version=”3.0.87″ text_font=”PT Sans|on|||” text_text_color=”#888888″ text_font_size=”12″ text_letter_spacing=”2px” text_line_height=”1.2em” background_size=”initial” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” text_orientation=”center” module_alignment=”center” custom_margin=”30px|||” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]PICK OF THE WEEK
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and more!
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