Author Topic: What kind of side-business would you start with a large property?  (Read 2620 times)

JAYSLOL

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Hey everyone, I'm curious about starting a side business that won't take up a huge amount of time or capital (I know, don't we all).  I'm currently renting a house on an acreage and the landlord and I are interested in partnering in some kind of business to get the place producing an income for both of us. 

About the property, it is 8 acres of excellent farmland in the southern interior of British Columbia, Canada.  It is in the ALR (farm use only + 1 single family residence).  We have long hot summers here, and there are many orchards, vineyards and other farms in the area.  The property is on a rural highway, so there is some exposure if we started a u-pick or something.

Some of the ideas we've talked about

- U-Pick Berry or Vegetable farm.  My preference would be towards berries, likely less work/dollar coming in.

- Growing plants for sale.  Christmas trees?, cedars? fancy Japanese Maples? Cana lilies?

What are your thoughts?

kimmarg

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Re: What kind of side-business would you start with a large property?
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2017, 09:28:28 AM »
Christmas trees is probably the least work for a side business because they don't go bad like berries and they only are harvested for a few weeks.  My impression is that Upick berries is more work than you'd think and berries are very perishable.

JAYSLOL

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Re: What kind of side-business would you start with a large property?
« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2017, 11:59:48 AM »
Christmas trees is probably the least work for a side business because they don't go bad like berries and they only are harvested for a few weeks.  My impression is that Upick berries is more work than you'd think and berries are very perishable.

That's probably true, although from what I've read we'd have to wait 4 years or more before we could start selling if we planted small trees from those 2 gallon pots, sooner if we paid a lot to buy bigger trees, which wouldn't be ideal.  Berries we could start selling in 1 - 2 years. 

Goldielocks

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Re: What kind of side-business would you start with a large property?
« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2017, 01:03:26 PM »
U pick saskatoon berries -- they need even less water than other berries, and about half the pesticides.  Hard to find in BC, and the flavour is lovely.

Farms in Alberta were converting to these, as the owners aged past 50years and wanted something easier.

Hay, that someone else cuts for you, especially if you have enough rain or water.

Rent out to another farmer.

honeybbq

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Re: What kind of side-business would you start with a large property?
« Reply #4 on: May 16, 2017, 02:11:53 PM »
free range doggie day care/doggie kenneling if you can fence in some areas.

mozar

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Dusty Dog Ranch

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Re: What kind of side-business would you start with a large property?
« Reply #6 on: May 16, 2017, 09:07:43 PM »
U pick saskatoon berries -- they need even less water than other berries, and about half the pesticides.  Hard to find in BC, and the flavour is lovely.

Bonus, they are native to the Okanagan...and the Okanogan, where I am. ;-) Mine all grow happily without anything except what Ma Nature provides. I just have to beat the bears to them.

If BC is anything like WA, there are young farmers trying to find land to farm, but it is often too expensive to buy. Try connecting with a young farmers association to see if that is the case. A lease might be a win win situation.

JAYSLOL

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Re: What kind of side-business would you start with a large property?
« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2017, 06:38:41 AM »
U pick saskatoon berries -- they need even less water than other berries, and about half the pesticides.  Hard to find in BC, and the flavour is lovely.

Farms in Alberta were converting to these, as the owners aged past 50years and wanted something easier.

Hay, that someone else cuts for you, especially if you have enough rain or water.

Rent out to another farmer.

If we do berries, we will probably try at least 3 or 4 types, so I'll add Saskatoon Berries to the list.  Water isn't a problem, in fact I never irrigate anything here including newly planted cedars, vegetables etc.  There is a lot of water in the ground.  There is some demand for hay, but the way the property is divided into a lot of small fields with patches of trees, buildings etc in between makes it harder to harvest.

JAYSLOL

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Re: What kind of side-business would you start with a large property?
« Reply #8 on: May 17, 2017, 06:40:57 AM »
free range doggie day care/doggie kenneling if you can fence in some areas.

Good thought, I would have to build some fencing

v8rx7guy

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Re: What kind of side-business would you start with a large property?
« Reply #9 on: May 17, 2017, 08:19:46 AM »
If it were me, I'd do blueberries (huge in southern BC) and sell them as u-pick and in addition start making blueberry wine and get all of the licensees to sell it from a tasting room and to the public.

Fishindude

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Re: What kind of side-business would you start with a large property?
« Reply #10 on: May 17, 2017, 08:26:50 AM »
If it is fenced, put about 8-10 feeder cattle on it and raise them to butcher weight.
Should be able to make enough so that you and landlord can split a free beef.