NEED SOME HELP?
Just starting out with livestock, or still dreaming?
Want your hobby animals to finally
start making money for you?
Looking to expand your existing farm
to new species or new markets?
I've been successfully & happily raising livestock
using organic & sustainable methods for 20+ years
(& helping new & existing farmers for over 10 years).
Let's see if I can help you bring your small farm dreams to life!
PHONE HELP LINE - SITE VISIT & EVALUATION - MENTORING
What SkyLines Farm
I've been raising sheep for a living using sustainable and organic methods
since 1992, growing
the flock to as many as 100 vibrantly healthy breeding ewes and their lambs. Each year I sold all their products to consumers locally
directly from the farm website, selling out every year. At the same time, I slowly built what is now a successful grassfed
beef and pastured pig operation,
marketing all their
products from the website too, still selling out every year.
In 2013, after 21 wonderful years, I retired the year-round sheep &
and expanded my summer-only business of finishing grassfed beef and pastured
Now, instead of keeping breeding animals year-round I purchase young steers and pigs each spring from
trusted breeders whose organic & sustainable
practices mirror mine. I feed and finish them over the summer on the farm's lush green pastures, using time-tested organic &
sustainable management practices, and in the fall direct-market the meats
to discriminating families in the region.
Since 2005 I've
teaching small farming adult-ed classes,
hosting on-farm workshops, season-long apprenticeships,
and offering intensive Farm Immersions...all with the express purpose of sharing the knowledge and insights I've gained from
nearly 25 years of
successful (& profitable) small livestock farming.
I'd love to help you make your sustainable farm dreams come true! Melisssa Lines
General Topics I Can Help You With
- Developing a farm plan. As with any new venture, it's critical to think through your vision in a logical fashion before you
do anything. Lay out your plan on paper, work the numbers, decide if your farm dreams are actually in line with the reality of...your
physical, mental & emotional skills, your farm, financial and personal resources, and your venture's profit potential if making money is one
of your farm goals.
- Purchasing the right piece of land to fit your farming dreams.
Before I purchased this 65-acre farm back in the 90's,
I spent two years looking
at 53 different properties before I finally found the right one. Yep, that's 53 properties that I visited,
tromped through, and painstakingly evaluated against the long list of criteria that I'd generated through developing my farm plan.
We all have our own unique farm goals, but if you're looking to build a sustainable livestock operation
I may well be able to help
you evaluate properties and find your perfect dream farm.
- Evaluating your current land and resources for starting up or adding sustainable livestock enterprises.
- Choosing the best animal species to fit your temperament, your goals, your skills, your resources, and your dreams.
- Planning your sustainable farm practices starting from scratch, or adopting your existing methods to reduce or eliminate
drugs and chemicals.
- Planning for a smooth, natural evolution of your farm enterprises to adapt to life changes (i.e. easing your workload as
you approach retirement age, whenever that is:)
- Breeding & raising sheep for three products - High-dollar premium wool for spinners, grassfed sustainably raised meat, superior breeding stock
- Growing, evaluating, and marketing
premium wool for handspinners
- Raising and finishing heritage-breed pastured feeder pigs
- Finishing feeder steers on well-managed, rotationally grazed pasture
- Managing pastures for optimal productivity and parasite control
- Direct marketing
breeding stock and/or freezer lamb, beef, or pork to consumers
- Planning and using a rotational grazing system for multiple species
- Building & maintaining a variety of livestock fencing styles, including electric
- Planning winter rations & options for getting hay in
- Using garlic/molasses/DE/pasture rotation for organic control of internal
- Housing, water, feed requirements for sheep, cattle, pigs
- Low-stress livestock handling
- Living with, working with, and training livestock guardian
- OR?? Suggest other topics of interest and I'll be frank about whether I can help you.
THREE OPTIONS FOR CONSULTING
Option 1 - PHONE HELP LINE
Whether you're an aspiring small farmer, have a small farm already in operation, or been farming for years
and have a question...this is the quickest, simplest way to get help fast.
We schedule a phone call to pick my brain about one or more
topics relating to
sustainable livestock. See the above list
of possible topics.
If you don't see your topic listed email me. To get the most benefit from our call, please prepare your questions in advance,
and if you think you'll need more than one call
consider one of the Mentoring
Packages below to save some money.
Rate for Help Line Phone Call - $1.00/minute, $25 minimum
Option 2 - SITE VISIT & EVALUATION
This is a great way to get your small farm experience off to the best start or to improve what you're already doing with your farm.
I visit your farm (or a property you're considering purchasing) and tour the property with you. We discuss
your resources, your experience,
your farm goals and dreams.
During the tour I share my initial observations about the property and how it can help you reach your goals, or
how you might want to refine your goals based on the resources the property offers.
Within two weeks of the visit I provide a detailed written report with a property evaluation and my
for you, including a list of contacts and resources for further investigation.
Rate for Site Visit & Evaluation
- $350 for half-day site visit & detailed written report
- $600 for full-day site visit & detailed written report
* Rates are plus travel expenses from & to my farm: $25/hr.travel time; $.50/mile for round-trip driving; airfare & lodging if applicable.
Option 3 - MENTORING via PHONE or SKYPE
This is a more long-term approach that gives you ongoing support and encouragement to help you meet your farm goals. First, we schedule
a one-hour call to discuss your goals and outline what it will take to reach them. Together we'll lay
out a Plan of
Action for you, steps you commit to taking to
propel yourself toward your stated goal.
Then we schedule a one-hour call every 1, 2 or 4 weeks to check in on your
progress. (We can schedule half-hour calls if that works better for you.)
During these calls I'll brainstorm with you to answer questions that have come up, help you get unstuck if necessary,
and make sure you're still on the
right track. As you move forward you'll likely encounter some problems, or you may find you want to tweak or revise your
calls can help you get past these hurdles and keep you moving toward your goals.
Rates for PHONE/SKYPE MENTORING PACKAGES
1 hour mentoring every month for...
- 3 months - $150
- 6 months - $300
- 12 months - $600
2 hours mentoring every month for...
- 3 months - $300
- 6 months - $600
- 12 months - $1200
4 hours mentoring every month for...
- 3 months - $600
- 6 months - $1200
- 12 months - $2400
(Other arrangements for mentoring may be possible on an individual basis.)
** BONUS **
SITE VISIT/MENTORING PACKAGE
A site visit and detailed evaluation is a great foundation for mentoring. Add this to any of the Mentoring Packages
and take $50 off the total price.
PAYMENT FOR CONSULTING
Consulting options are payable in advance by check or PayPal (easily & securely fund the payment with your credit card, bank account or PayPal account).
STILL NOT SURE?
If you aren't sure which of these options would be best for you, or if you want to discuss an alternative consulting option, feel free to
write me. Or if you'd like to get an idea of what a consult with me is like, we can schedule a Phone/Skype Help Line call
to discuss your situation.
FOR MORE INFO
or to schedule consulting services
contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
* Special Work Trade Mentoring Option for local person *
my former season-long full-scale apprenticeship program. Each year I arrange with 1 or 2 individuals living in the
Moscow ID area for a work trade, in which we trade a few days per month of farm labor for education. This is generally scheduled between
the months of April and October. We spend half the day
learning what you want and need to learn about raising livestock by organic & sustainable methods, and half the day you'll work
with me on a current farm labor project. You need to be healthy, fit, love working outdoors and not mind getting dirty:)
If this sounds like a good match for you, drop me a note to begin the discussion.
Farm 4551 Highway 6 Harvard, ID 83834
Purebred Romney & Romney-Cross