Fall Salutations!

Pumpkin patches. Apple picking. Hayrides. Corn mazes. What better way to spend a crisp, colorful Fall day?

If you haven’t already, now is the time to visit your local area farms to get involved in fun Fall activities.

To get you in the proper seasonal spirit, here are some pretty mind-blowing agricultural facts about two traditional Fall delights: Pumpkins and apples.

  • This first one is seriously mind-blowing: Pumpkins are not vegetables…they are fruits! Who knew?
  • Pumpkins were once suggested curatives for removing freckles and treating snakebites. Fortunately, we’ve come along way since then with our medicinal treatments and theories…
  • The heaviest pumpkin weighed 1,140 pounds. Incredible, right?
  • Pumpkins are comprised of 90 percent water. Whaaa?
  • In early colonial times, pumpkins were used as an ingredient for the crust of pies, not the filling. This would be an interesting recipe to test: Try baking a pumpkin crusted, pumpkin filled pie for double pumpkin goodness!
  • Pumpkins have been harvested in America for over 5,000 years.
  • The first apple to reach the United States was brought by the Pilgrims in 1620. So, we can give thanks to the Pilgrims for our apple abundance here in the States!
  • There exists approximately 7,500 types of apples. To try each variety would be a feat!
  • It takes approximately 36 apples to produce one gallon of apple cider.
  • Apple trees take four to five years to produce their first fruit. Talk about delayed gratification!
  • The crabapple is the only apple native to North America.
  • Archeologists have uncovered evidence that humans have been enjoying apples since at least 6500 B.C. Maybe because they kept the doctor away?
  • Apple trees enjoy very long lives. In fact, a standard apple tree lives an average of 100 years!


Now, when you’re selecting pumpkins or picking apples, you can wow your friends and family with an agricultural fact or two!

Happy Fall!

Ever dream about running your own apple or pumpkin farm? Contact Bankers South, an established ag lending company, about your ag loan options. Maybe you’d like to run a small, eco-friendly farm and require a hobby farm loan? Maybe you envision a larger agricultural operation? Either way, we’d like to make your farming dreams a reality.  












13 Tips for Starting a Hobby Farm

Before we dive in, first things first: What is a hobby farm?

A hobby farm is an agricultural operation that isn’t traditionally run as an “agribusiness.” Hobby farms can, and usually are, self-sustaining, and most generate a profit. However, hobby farms are not the commercial farms covering thousands of acres that you generally think of when you consider a standard farm. Hobby farmlands are typically small in size – between roughly 40 and 100 acres – and many are committed to sustainable agriculture, eco-conscious practices, and fair, friendly animal treatment.

Though they aren’t full-blown commercial farms, hobby farms still require a lot of preparation, work, and financial support to run successfully. Before you decide to pursue such an endeavor, cover your bases:

  1. Determine your farming objectives. What do you want to raise? What do you want to plant? Do you want to be off the grid?
  2. Check out the zoning laws. Land doesn’t necessarily come with “all rights.” To be sure you’ll be able to do what you want with your land, you must look into this. Using a real estate agent well versed in agricultural land law is a sure way to know what you’re getting.
  3. Write a business plan. Strategically develop a vision for your farming operation.
  4. Select appropriate, good quality fencing.
  5. Test your farm’s soil for quality, texture, and contour.
  6. Figure out your water management and pasture management plans.
  7. Determine feeding for livestock (if applicable).
  8. Assess your target market and market to this audience creatively.
  9. Determine your farm equipment needs.
  10. Go green. This can actually save your ag operation money. Limit your expenses by implementing energy conservation tactics that enhance your farm’s efficiency while helping to reduce negative impacts on the environment.
  11. Reduce, reuse, and recycle. Reduce costs and support the earth.
  12. Become a sponge for information. Read up on all things farming. Know your pastures (what grows, what doesn’t, what is potentially poisonous, etc.). Network with local farmers and other hobby farmers. Watch. Listen. Question. Learn.
  13. Don’t fear failure. There’s so much to learn! Realize that nothing replaces the real experience of actually following through and starting your farm. Also realize that no matter how much research you do, you will make mistakes. Don’t let mistakes frustrate you too much. Consider them lessons.


Need assistance with hobby farmland financing? Contact Bankers South – an ag lending company – for information regarding our hobby farm loan and other farm loan services.