Note to readers, attached is the complete final report for FNE03-459
Over the years we have reclaimed nearly twenty acres of overgrown pasture and hay field. Though this has taken a lot of labor, the yields in home heating fuel, pastured animal and other products have been significant. It has been a slow process, but one which is low input and sustainable and protects the land from the damage of heavy machinery.
We have shown that clearing land this way can be an economically viable method as income is produced soon (cordwood, pork products, rough pasture) after work begins and overhead costs are very low compared to having heavy machinery do the clearing. The cost of heavy machinery is eliminated as well as any soil fertilizers or amendments. The totals from the balance sheet show a minimal $400 deficit. However, this is a year by year accounting of the grant period only and not the future where the investment in clearing and planting actually beings to pay off. The small fruits will begin to produce next year as the pasture productivity is increasing. Experience shows also that the land is left in much better condition as the soil layers are not disturbed.