Logo primary
Logo secondary
Farming for Dummies
Farming for Dummies
Last updated:
Parkes, NSW, AU
Climate zone:

My Projects

(projects i'm involved in)

Farming for Dummies

Farming for Dummies

Parkes, AU

Damiana Costa Joan Weytze Marcus Pan Nola Alaniz Petra Doerfling Stephanie Ladwig-Cooper Virginia Huynh

Back to Farming for Dummies


Project: Farming for Dummies

Posted by Alexandra Berendt almost 12 years ago

I spend a lot of time with them and my main reason for buying acreage was to enable me to keep my horses at home. Here they are.

Horses are what I love.

Every day I spend many hours with my horses. Not just riding. It is not all about riding. I do enjoy it, don't get me wrong, horses are an expensive hobby to have and I do enjoy riding, driving and generally working them, but I also like just being around them.

Pony Club 2012

A lot of time is spent grooming, rugging on and off, collecting manure, moving paddocks around, filling up water, cleaning gear, buckets and the float and generally horsing around.


I only have two horses. Really, they are not very economical to own. They are not generally used for meat or milk in Australia, and I don't personally know anybody who actually uses them to farm and even if anyone did, cattle would be far more beneficial, since they can also produce milk and meat as well as work. They eat A LOT and do not use their food as well as many other types of lifestock.

My Horses

A horse will need to eat about 1-1.5% of its own weight in roughage (dry feed such as hay) PER DAY. If the fodder is of poor quality, they may need more. This means, a 500 kg horse will eat more than 5kg of hay per day. That is a lot of hay. That is at least 35 kg of hay per week. That is at least 1.8 metrical tonnes of hay per year.

Riding Pinkie at home

I have two such hay burners and my property does not have good enough pasture quality to sustain them. Sometimes they need to be handfed for weeks at a time because a lot of rain means the soil is more vulnerable to erosion and being stomped bare by a pair of horses. During those times I need to feed each of my horses about half a (small) bale of lucerne hay a day. Each bale costs $10. That is $10 a day to just feed two horses.

Pony Club 2012

Lucky I like them so much. 

My HorsesHowever, my goal is to grow most of what they need to eat on this place within a few years. To achieve this I will need to grow fodder trees and shrubs and improve my pasture (or rather, my soil) to a level where it will grow nutritious pasture on a large enough area to enable me to rotate pastures sustainably.


I may have a go at growing some grain to use as hard feed so I do not need to buy large quantities of commerical pellets any more, however I still need to learn a lot before I can make any of these changes.


Not every kind of grain is good for horses and too much of any kind can be dangerous. A lot of research is also still to be done to determine the best fodder trees and shrubs for horses, since most efforts in this area are concentrated on cattle and sheep, which are not only ruminants and thus much more effective at extracting nutrition from their food, but who are also better able to tolerate some chemicals which may cause poisoning in horses.

My Horses

On a positive note, they definately poop a lot, which gives me plenty of composting material to help improve soil fertility.

2012 Dubbo Show

In any case, these critters are the reason I started becoming interested in permaculture in the first place and they are definately worth the time and effort I spend on this project!  

2012 Dubbo Show

2012 Yeoval Show

Comments (0)

You must be logged in to comment.

Courses Taught Here!
Project Badges
Alexandra Berendt - Admin
Team Members

Report Farming for Dummies


or cancel

Hide Farming for Dummies


or cancel

Hide Horses


or cancel

Legend of Badges

Note: The various badges displayed in people profiles are largely honesty-based self-proclamations by the individuals themselves. There are reporting functions users can use if they know of blatant misrepresentation (for both people and projects). Legitimacy, competency and reputation for all people and projects can be evidenced and/or developed through their providing regular updates on permaculture work they’re involved in, before/after photographs, etc. A spirit of objective nurturing of both people and projects through knowledge/encouragement/inspiration/resource sharing is the aim of the Worldwide Permaculture Network.



A member is a permaculturist who has never taken a PDC course. These cannot become PDC teachers. Members may be novice or highly experienced permaculturists or anywhere in between. Watch their updates for evaluation.

Male memberFemale member

Permaculture Matchmaker

One of these badges will show if you select your gender and the "I'm single, looking for a permaculture partner" option in your profile.



People who claim to have taken a Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) course somewhere in the world.


PDC Verified

People who have entered an email address for the teacher of their PDC course, and have had their PDC status verified by that teacher. Watch their updates for evaluation.



People who’ve taken a Permaculture Research Institute PDC somewhere in the world.


PDC Teacher

People who claim to teach some version of PDC somewhere in the world.


PRI Teacher

With the exception of the ‘Member’ who has never taken a PDC, all of the above can apply to become a PRI PDC Teacher. PRI PDC Teachers are those who the PRI recognise, through a vetting board, as determined and competent to teach the full 72-hour course as developed by Permaculture founder Bill Mollison – covering all the topics of The Designers’ Manual as well as possible (i.e. not cherry picking only aspects the teacher feels most interested or competent in). Such teachers also commit to focussing on the design science, and not including subjective spiritual/metaphysical elements. The reason these items are not included in the PDC curriculum is because they are “belief” based. Permaculture Design education concerns itself with teaching good design based on strategies and techniques which are scientifically provable.

PRI PDC Teachers may be given teaching and/or consultancy offerings as they become available as the network grows.


Aid Worker

The individual with this badge is indicating they are, have, or would like to be involved in permaculture aid work. As such, the individual may or may not have permaculture aid worker experience. Watch their updates for evaluation.



The individual with this badge is indicating they are, have, or would like to do paid permaculture design consultancy work. As such, the individual may or may not have permaculture consultancy experience. Watch their updates for evaluation.


Community Project

Community projects are projects that help develop sustainable community interaction and increase localised resiliency.

Report Horses


or cancel