Young family moving to the country

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6 years 7 months ago #514612 by Goldy9
Hi There,

We are a young family moving to the country and whilst handy have minimal skills/knowledge about running a lifestyle block.

I wondered if anyone is aware of an introduction course we could do that would cover basics such as fencing, health and safety, tractors, livestock etc. We will be located in the Hunua Hills, Drury area.

We will start building early next year but once we take possession of the land would like to make a start tidying up and maintaining the land.

There is a lot of gorse bush that will need to be removed and on the grazing land lots of new growth gorse. I have read some forums on here but would welcome any referrals in the local area.

I'm also keen to hear about or be referred to good priced fencing suppliers and recommendations for landscapers in the local area.

TIA

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6 years 7 months ago #514723 by LongRidge
Having started to learn about farming, 50 years ago, fairly near to you (Kirikiri near Kopu near Thames) I will try to provide some information.
1. Re fencing. There are some very good books available, perhaps on-line. I learnt from an old farmer that taught me lots, and various people around here have volunteered to join with a professional fencing gang for a couple of weeks, to learn the basics. I think there is ialso an article on here about how to.
2. Re buying new fencing. We find that Farmlands do the best deal, and get good quality timber. I would ask them if they know of a way to learn how. Farmlands is a farmers co-operative so try to get the best products at the best prices. You do NOT need to be a shareholder to buy, but do to get the shareholder price.
3. Because you have gorse, you must get Public Liability Insurance in case a fire spreads from or through your place. We use AMI because they have a local branch so we can seat ourselves in their office until we get the answer we want. That is more difficult on a phone. FMI Farmers Mutual is another but they don't have a local office and at one stage did not insure everything. When we did have to insure with them, the savings we got by doing it through Farmlands more than paid for joining Farmlands as a shareholder.
4. Gorse is an indication of low soil nitrogen and low soil sulphur. I strongly recommend fertilising with an appropriate fertiliser before you start spraying the gorse. Without changing the soil fertility to what pasture likes, gorse seeds will grow better than pasture seeds.
5. Do not spray with a glyphosate based spray because it will kill the grass that is under the gorse, and you want to save that grass to slow the gorse seeds from germinating.

So go to Farmlands and ask about fencing videos or booklets. Also ask if they know of fencing contractors that would train you.
Work out what sort of animals you might want and fence for them. Also include electric fencing in the plan because this protects your fences.
Ask Farmlands about fertiliser and the soil testing equipment, then get the soil tested.
Use Grazon or Ravensdown (0800 100 123) equivalent. I don't use the Tordons because they are to easy to confuse, and can cause allergic reactions.

I hope this helps, and remember that there is no such thing as a silly question, so ask whatever you want ..... except how to set up a nude farm tourist business - that has already been asked, and farms have too many biting and prickly things for it to work.

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6 years 7 months ago #514724 by Stikkibeek
For competitive fencing supplies, check out both Norton's timber mill Clevedon, and Max Birt sawmills at Pokeno. SH2.

Did you know, that what you thought I said, was not what I meant :S

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6 years 7 months ago #514726 by allyearle
Hi Tia,

Welcome to the Franklin Area. There is a few short courses around I would give Elayne an email [email protected] - I think this may be further down the line though but day courses maybe worth the drive I know they do fencing, animal management, using chainsaws, riding ATV's etc. Otherwise PGG Wrightson does an introductory Rural skills course and they used to teach this out of Pukekohe not sure if they still do they but might be worth giving them a call?

Re your gorse I would maybe give these guys a call and get a quote www.lifestyleblockspraying.co.nz/contact.html or these guys agoptions.co.nz/ and just see who offers a better deal (they do fencing aswell) - probably other options in the phone book as well.

Hope this helps :)

2 & a half acres, 2 Border Collies, 1 Shih tzu, 1 Ginger Cat,1 Love Bird, 2 Fish, 2 Saanen Goats and 2 Calves - Angus and a Jersey!

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6 years 7 months ago #514782 by Goldy9
Many thanks for the helpful information it's most appreciated :)

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6 years 7 months ago #514786 by MurrayR
For fencing supplies and fencing I would recommend Alan Jeffs at Mangatangi. I think trade name is "Roundwood Timber Supplies"
Yard is in Stubbs Rd, off Kaiaua Rd.

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6 years 7 months ago #514835 by wjthomo
Hi There.

You should join the Facebook page - Franklin Grapevine. its a great site for asking for recommendations for trades people etc., as you move into the area.

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6 years 7 months ago #515634 by Baroque
Welcome to the area! We've been here for about 25 years so if you need any help with local knowledge for fencing and other stuff just ask. :)

Mortons in Clevedon or Ramseys Roundwood [now called Carters] in Drury are both good for timber and supplies.

For top dressing, soil testing etc local companies are WEALLEANS or Karaka Bulk Spreaders. There are a few good fencers locally too.

Breeding & training quality Spanish horses - THE horse of Kings! Also breeding Arapawa & Pitt Island sheep.

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6 years 7 months ago #515636 by Baroque
this may be of interest to you for training....

Introduction to Farming training

Breeding & training quality Spanish horses - THE horse of Kings! Also breeding Arapawa & Pitt Island sheep.

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