GFP083: 5 Lessons Learned On Farm This Year

I know we have all learned a lot this year. There have been good times, there have been bad times, and everything in between. This farm podcast episode focuses on five lessons learned by one of the Farm Finance Challenge participants Jonathan Woodford of Sugarwood Acres.

  • Better record keeping is the key to success.
  • Things don’t always go according to plan.
  • It’s important to take time to help others.
  • Do what it takes to get the job done.
  • A farm is a wonderful place to raise a family.


What is my name?

Jonathan Woodford

What is the name of my farm?

SugarWood Acres

A brief description of my farm:

160 acre certified organic farm on which we produce hay, maple syrup, small amount of grain and corn. We raise couple beef and pork for meat.

Where is my farm located?

388 North Third St. West Farmington Ohio, 44491

What are my main operations?

In 2013, we ran a 700 bucket operation, increased to 1200 buckets for 2014. 2014 we sold small square bales, mostly for horse feed. We also did some large round bales, which sold for a beef operation. We bought two angus heifers to start a breeding stock. We have raised a couple feeder cows in our front yard for a few years prior. This year we started with three feeder pigs. For 2015, we are looking into expanding into bees, more feeder pigs, two dozen chickens and half dozen turkeys.

How big is my farm?

We have about hundred acres of fields and forty acres of woods. My wife and I both work at the local school. I farm to provide my family with food that we know where it comes from and how it was raised. I enjoy farming and try to make a little extra money while doing it.

How would I want people to contact me?

SugarWood Acres on Facebook

@SugarWoodAcres on Twitter

Why am I participating in the Farm Finance Challenge?

I started keeping track of hours spent collecting sap for the past two years. I try to start keeping track of tractor time but failed to do a good job at it. I have wanted to get a better idea of how much time we spend doing things and if we are making our time back in our sales.

What is one thing you are struggling with on your farm?

This year will be the first time doing farm taxes. I have no clue what to expect. I have a hard time pricing my products for sale.

What do you hope to get out of the Challenge by the end?

At the end of this challenge, I hope to have a better understanding of where I spend my time. I also will have a better idea of how much time and money it will cost me to run the farm.


Take aways:

How will better records effect your decision making?

How do you create those positive habits that will propel your farm forward?


Farm quote of the episode:

“Decisions are the hardest things to make. Especially when it is a choice between where you should be and where you want to be.” – Anonymous

Thanks for taking the time to listen in, and let me know what you think. You can leave a comment below, send me an e-mail, reach me on Facebook , or leave a 5 star rating in iTunes if you liked the show.