ABOUT THE LAND
We are a six-year-old (under current owners) 2.5 acre farm in Metchosin. The land is fully cleared (previously used for pasture) with good sun exposure in all seasons on most of the property. A small creek bisects the property. There are no water rights on the creek and it dries up in summer. The property is fully deer fenced. It will need some work on maintenance in the coming year. All practices regarding the plants/soil have been done meeting organic standards. Some antibiotics have been used on the animals when necessary.
There is a barn, 2 coops and 3 small sheds (currently for goat shelter) largely located centrally in the property. Currently there is a mix of poultry (chickens, ducks and geese) being raised largely for egg production. Currently there are goats; 3 milking does and 2 bucks, on the property. The barn is used for chicken housing, hay storage and goat kidding and milking. There is power and frost free water to the barn.
The land to the west of the creek is a slightly sloped clay/sandy loam mix with eastern/southern exposure. The perimeter of this area has been planted to a mix of early and late plums, apples and pears. Seventy-five percent of the centre of this area is currently under berry (marion, strawberry and thornless blackberry) production. There is water and drip irrigation line to all plantings. The control is located centrally at the barn.
The balance of the property has a much heavier clay soil that has been requiring large organic matter improvements to amend it for plantings. In one area vegetable and strawberry planting for the owner exists. There are original apple and hazelnut trees on the east side of the property. A blueberry planting has been initiated but is still young and in need of attention. There are a number of young nut trees on the property.
ABOUT THE OPPORTUNITY
The owners love the farm and growing things but would like to travel more often. They hate the idea that all the work that has been done on the permanent plantings would be lost if all were left to a less managed situation. There is room for someone to open up more growing areas as well as make over other areas to suit their interests. The owners would continue caring for the animals (but are open to sharing) and a small-scale garden. They would hope to be able to have an opportunity to share in some of the fruit tree production. They would like to be able to share respectful, unrestricted access to the entire property with the lessee.
There is an arched style 16’ x 30’ double walled greenhouse with power and water centrally located between the owners house and the barn. It has a gravel over landscape fabric floor due to the poor quality soil beneath it. This would be available to be shared in some fashion with the owner who uses it for plant starts and tomatoes during the summer.
The farm has the following equipment that would be available on a “rental” basis: small tractor with bucket and front end loader, small BCS walking tractor with tiller, sickle mower and chipper attachments, backpack sprayer, soil sampler, orchard ladder and apple press. The property is on “city water” and farm status is kept up so a lower rate does apply after the volume threshold is met. A separate water meter would have to be set up for tracking consumption by the lessee.
There is access to the property from the road at the northwest corner as well as through the yard by the greenhouse. A successful farm stand (for perennials and annual plant starts as well as for eggs) was set up at this entrance and the space is still there with a deer fence around it.
The owners live in a house on the northeast corner of the property. There is a second house on the property that is rented out and unfortunately there is currently no other opportunity for rent on the land, or the potential to put anything on the property for housing.
GET IN TOUCH!
For more information about this opportunity contact the Vancouver Island Land Matcher, Azja, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 250-413-7560.
To learn more about the BC Land Matching Program and to find other land opportunities visit https://youngagrarians.org/tools/land/
The B.C. Land Matching Program is funded on Vancouver Island by the B.C. Ministry of Agriculture and Cowichan Valley Regional District. Thank you to Cowichan Green Community for providing in-kind program support.