Progress so far with the FSA and our new Ranch

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Adam Freeman
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Progress so far with the FSA and our new Ranch

Post by Adam Freeman » Sat May 16, 2020 12:26 pm

Greetings. Just wanted to let everyone know how things are going with our new Ranch. My name is Adam Freeman and with my wife Ashley and our 3 girls and 1 boy we are getting into this new adventure full bore. A little Background. I am a soon to be retired 20 year vet from the Army. After these last 20 years I wanted to get back to my roots and become a farmer/rancher. We looked into it and with the help from my family we applied for the FSA's New Farmer Loan program. There was a ton of paperwork and we had a lot of great help from our local FSA agent Kevin. He answered all of our questions told us when we were dreaming to big and helped us to get started with something that would work and wouldn't break us financially. We ended up applying for and getting approved for funding to purchase 160 acres of land in north central Kansas near my hometown of Bennington. We were able to buy the land for 1575 an acre which was pretty much in line with the market. The FSA was also able to help us get started with an operation loan to go out and purchase our cows and bull as well as erect a Barn/ machine shed, bring power out to it and purchase a tractor. We couldn't have done any of this without the help of Kevin or our real estate agent Chris who is also a farmer.

So far we have spent the last month checking and making minor repairs to the fence as well as tearing out some old catch pens. We have been out cutting hedge post and getting ready to build fence around our eventual homesite as well as update and enlarge the remaining set of pens in order to be able to work our cattle efficiently. We ended up buying Our registered Angus bull from Gairdner Angus Ranch. We went to the local sale barn in Salina and we were able to purchase 11 cow calf pairs as well as 12 more heavy bred heifers and one older heavy bread cow. As a gift I also received a heifer from my mothers farm to help get us started. So in the end we ended up with 25 head plus 11 calves with 13 on the way and a bull.

We have the electricity being brought in by the power company this week as well as the dirt work getting started for the barn. Cows are all purchased and happy with their new home. Only thing left to do is get a decent tractor and finish out calving the remainder of our heifers. One spot of bad news so far has been the loss of one heifer that we found this morning. We are going to try and investigate what happened but there is no telling what it might be. The kids were sad about it but they all understand how life works.

If anyone has any pointers or is from the area and would like to discuss cattle or anything else I am always open to learning and helping out. I am trying to attach a few pictures from our adventures as the kids call it. Hope you all enjoy and have a blessed day.



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Re: Progress so far with the FSA and our new Ranch

Post by _H Ranch » Sat May 16, 2020 5:09 pm

I am happy for you. Very exciting.

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Re: Progress so far with the FSA and our new Ranch

Post by SBMF 2015 » Sat May 16, 2020 5:17 pm

Congratulations!
Your right, there is TONS of paper work with the FSA. But they sure are helpful when your trying to get started.
Never fear them, but ALWAYS respect them.

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Re: Progress so far with the FSA and our new Ranch

Post by callmefence » Sat May 16, 2020 5:47 pm

Adam Freeman wrote:
Sat May 16, 2020 12:26 pm
Greetings. Just wanted to let everyone know how things are going with our new Ranch. My name is Adam Freeman and with my wife Ashley and our 3 girls and 1 boy we are getting into this new adventure full bore. A little Background. I am a soon to be retired 20 year vet from the Army. After these last 20 years I wanted to get back to my roots and become a farmer/rancher. We looked into it and with the help from my family we applied for the FSA's New Farmer Loan program. There was a ton of paperwork and we had a lot of great help from our local FSA agent Kevin. He answered all of our questions told us when we were dreaming to big and helped us to get started with something that would work and wouldn't break us financially. We ended up applying for and getting approved for funding to purchase 160 acres of land in north central Kansas near my hometown of Bennington. We were able to buy the land for 1575 an acre which was pretty much in line with the market. The FSA was also able to help us get started with an operation loan to go out and purchase our cows and bull as well as erect a Barn/ machine shed, bring power out to it and purchase a tractor. We couldn't have done any of this without the help of Kevin or our real estate agent Chris who is also a farmer.

So far we have spent the last month checking and making minor repairs to the fence as well as tearing out some old catch pens. We have been out cutting hedge post and getting ready to build fence around our eventual homesite as well as update and enlarge the remaining set of pens in order to be able to work our cattle efficiently. We ended up buying Our registered Angus bull from Gairdner Angus Ranch. We went to the local sale barn in Salina and we were able to purchase 11 cow calf pairs as well as 12 more heavy bred heifers and one older heavy bread cow. As a gift I also received a heifer from my mothers farm to help get us started. So in the end we ended up with 25 head plus 11 calves with 13 on the way and a bull.

We have the electricity being brought in by the power company this week as well as the dirt work getting started for the barn. Cows are all purchased and happy with their new home. Only thing left to do is get a decent tractor and finish out calving the remainder of our heifers. One spot of bad news so far has been the loss of one heifer that we found this morning. We are going to try and investigate what happened but there is no telling what it might be. The kids were sad about it but they all understand how life works.

If anyone has any pointers or is from the area and would like to discuss cattle or anything else I am always open to learning and helping out. I am trying to attach a few pictures from our adventures as the kids call it. Hope you all enjoy and have a blessed day.
Congratulations.. a fellow might have a fighting chance with good land that cheap. Be willing to have to make income off your land and equipment, not just selling calves. Hunting, is only one example of many possibilities.

I always cringe a little with folks starting out with heifers. Do your homework and research and be prepared. Get your heifers as easy to handle as you can and don't make the common new guy mistake of overfeeding.
It's not usually hard to pull a calf, but you do need to have a clue. make sure you do.

Good luck.
Support your local hardworking white boy.




You can all go to he// . I'll go to Texas.
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Re: Progress so far with the FSA and our new Ranch

Post by TCRanch » Sun May 17, 2020 7:52 am

Congrats on the progress and the Gardner bull! You're a couple hours north of me. If you plan on leaving the bull in and calving year 'round I'd make sure to have shelter for our patchy, brutal winters - calves with frozen ears don't do well at the sale barn.

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Re: Progress so far with the FSA and our new Ranch

Post by BFE » Sun May 17, 2020 7:58 am

Congratulations to you and your family! My wife's sister and her husband recently bought a house and a few acres near Bennington, so maybe you and I can get together when we make it out to Kansas for our visits. BIL manages the Scoular elevator in Salina, SIL works for the Kansas state Department of Agriculture.

I have friends in Emporia at Badger Creek Ranch. Glen Woodrow is from my area, knows cattle very well (bred the Simmental bulls Rendition and Trademark). His son Clint manages the ranch, Glen works there in his "retirement". Glen will shoot you straight.

Without seeing your operation, my only advice is to get set up for some type of rotational grazing. The grass will go much farther, and it will be better for the soil. Also, look into unrolling hay to build soil, you can do this with a UTV or four wheeler with the right unroller.

Enjoy it. You'll make plenty of mistakes along the way, but use them to learn, and keep your head up. It is a labor of love, or insanity!

Edit: thank you for your service to our country!

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Re: Progress so far with the FSA and our new Ranch

Post by MurraysMutts » Sun May 17, 2020 11:18 pm

Congratulations and welcome aboard!
Love it when a plan comes together.
It's nice to hear from someone new with a passion to go get em!
Crossbred for high bread vinegar....

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Re: Progress so far with the FSA and our new Ranch

Post by BlondeD » Tue May 19, 2020 12:56 am

Progress so far.....great to hear. Research a lot on this site......then research again. Be ready for the ups and downs, both weather and herd health wise. But quickly learn to grow and manage grass......that's you main resource...IMHO

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