Homestead Goals 2021

by Becky

I have been pondering over the last few weeks my goals for the homestead in 2021. I often feel a little intimidated by setting homesteading goals because most of the time I don’t have complete control over what happens. Weather, bugs, predator attacks, and shortages in supplies which have become the norm here in the US can crush any well meaning goal. 

But rather than giving up or not doing anything, I am going to try my best even if it doesn’t mean perfection. The only way to move a mountain is one shovel full at a time. 

2021 Goals for The Seasonal Homestead

#1 Grow more Fall/ Winter crops

This is a big one on my list for next year. I’m hoping to get more greens and somehow reduce our vole population. Right now I’m practicing patience and hoping the predators will come and take care of them. If they don’t we will look into other options to remove the voles. I will also be planting a lot more carrots, asian greens and cabbages galore. 

#2 Do some Canning Tutorials

Priority number one for me is always to make sure I have enough food for our family. Between the animals, gardening, and preserving, it is a full time job to ensure enough food for a year’s supply. I don’t have time to blog or video very much during the height of the harvest season which is when all the canning is happening!

However, in lieu of the fact that I’ve received many, MANY requests for canning tutorials, I’m going to do my best to squeeze out some time for a canning tutorial or two. 

#3 Expand the Garden

I really debated back and forth on whether or not to expand the garden this year. I have a friend who is a market gardener and he told me that the rule of thumb is not to expand until you have the garden plot already in production under control. Meaning you are able to keep up with planting, harvest, maintenance, and the big one… weed control! 

I definitely didn’t have the weeds under control last year but now that it’s winter, I’ve had time to add mulch in my pathways and  sow cover crops. I feel more confident I will be able to keep up with my 100×100 foot garden, especially if we are living on the land next year.

The reason for the expansion is that I really, really want to complete my goal for a year’s supply of home grown vegetables. As I was going over my garden plan and my How Much to Plant for a Year’s Supply of Food chart, I was short on space for the amount of white potatoes needed. 

The plan is to prepare a 50×100 foot plot to start. I will plant the needed potatoes here and also bush beans which I always companion plant with potatoes. There will be some extra room and the kids will do their gardens in the new plot too. They are so excited to have more than a 4×4 foot square which is what I’ve limited them too in the past.

Final Thoughts

I feel like I could list twenty goals here but it’s good to focus on a few important ones and do them well. I am looking forward to a great year on the homestead. I didn’t list these as goals but we will also be adding a large amount of chickens, turkeys, and a couple of pigs to the homestead. 

The animals are more Cameron and the kids territory but I definitely have a hand in helping too. We are so excited to have the freedom to do animals and a large garden! Our last home was in a Property Owners Association and we always felt so limited. It’s so nice to be able to do what we want. 

In 2020 I set goals that I wasn’t sure I could complete but I was amazed to look back and see I completed each one, they are found HERE. I love that goals push me to work hard and become a little bit better each year.

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RuthAnne January 11, 2021 - 8:24 pm

Such a great list of goals! I look forward to seeing how it goes this year! We’re hoping to finally have a good garden year here (only my 2nd year with my garden space). And I am very excited for the canning tutorials as this will be my first year canning!

theseasonalhomestead January 12, 2021 - 3:59 am

Thanks RuthAnne! I hope you have a good garden year too!

Holly January 15, 2021 - 3:10 pm

Your new garden looks beautiful!! So excited for you!!
What kind of mulch and straw do you use in your garden to help control the weeds? I’m assuming it’s chemical free or organic? And where do you purchase it?
Thanks 😊

theseasonalhomestead January 20, 2021 - 11:20 pm

Hi Holly, Thank you! I usually use wood chip mulch. Sometimes I get this for free, I just call our electric company and they have a list that you can put your name on for when they clear trees and have extra wood chips they need to dump somewhere. Other times, if the power company is taking too long our city has a yard waste place where they accept branches and then chip them. They have a big pile that they give to city residents for free or if you are outside the city the cost is minimal.

Wood chip mulch is the safest bet to make sure the mulch is chemical free. I have heard horror stories about using straw and it having residual herbicides and it affecting the plants for years. My local hardware stores that sell straw usually don’t specify so I stay away from it just to be safe. But if you can find a source that you know is organic, straw works really well and breaks down easily in future years.

With the wood chip mulch you have to be a little more careful you don’t mix it in with your soil because it will suck away nitrogen from your plants. I have moved to adding the wood chip mulch mostly to the pathways of my garden. If I do put it in a garden bed, I carefully scrape it away before planting then rake it back in place once the seeds have sprouted.

Wes January 13, 2021 - 11:10 pm

Hi , could you share more about how you companion plant bush beans with potatoes? What spacing are each on, and how wide of beds? Do you hill your potatoes as you grow, and if so how does that work with the companion planting?



theseasonalhomestead January 20, 2021 - 11:09 pm

Hey Wes, I am doing 30 inch wide garden beds this year. I have 2 foot wide paths between beds. The plan for right now is to make a trench for the potatoes 10-12 inches from one edge of the 30 inch wide bed and plant them there. I plant potatoes about the end of March. I don’t plant the beans until about May 1st. The potatoes start to grow before the bush beans are planted. I usually have already hilled the potatoes once before I plant the bush beans.

I will plant the bush beans in the same garden bed. I have done this for many years but usually in a wider garden bed (4 feet). I’m a little nervous it will be kind of tight for the potatoes and beans but we’ll see how it goes. I think I will plant the beans about 6-8 inches from the edge on the side of the garden bed opposite the potatoes. As the potatoes grow I hill them one more time. At this point I am usually scooping dirt from the path and piling it on the potato plants in the garden bed instead of taking it from next to the beans.

Maja January 18, 2021 - 6:03 pm

I wish you good luck from Czech republic. I start gardening this year in our new garden. I am exciting and curious.

theseasonalhomestead January 20, 2021 - 11:22 pm

Thank you Maja! Good luck to you too!


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