Skip to comments.Farmers across America ditch tractors for oxen in bid to beat rising fuel prices
Posted on 05/15/2011 7:01:59 AM PDT by bkopto
When farmers Danielle and Matt Boerson realised they could no longer afford to run their tractors, they took the bull by the horns - and ditched them for oxen.
Soaring petrol prices had become so high that the couple, who run an 80-acre farm near Madison, Wisconsin, were forced to get rid of their two tractors, hay baler, plough and rotavator.
So they took a course at the agricultural institute in traditional farming techniques.
'It gave me the confidence that, yes, I could do this', Danielle told the Times. 'It just required a lot of concentration and a firm voice.' Their instructor was former peace core volunteer Dick Roosenberg, 64, who learned the trade while working for the UN in West Africa. He took the skills he had honed back to Michigan and set up Tillers International.
At first the company was aimed at helping Third World farmers harvest in the cheapest way possible.
On the side, he also helped historically-themed villages. But his specialist knowledge is now enjoying a new wave of interest with farmers from Wisconsin to Alaska now joining his courses.
(Excerpt) Read more at dailymail.co.uk ...
Perhaps we could switch Nebraska over to rice fields.
“the Amish live a 17th century lifestyle,”
Explain what the 17th century (1600’s) was like, I can’t get the picture.
What’s a spounge?
my father used to do that, and it’s
work. very few of the post ww2 generation would attempt it.
You've hit on a key aspect of many discussions I have had with leftists and assorted Luddites who have this romanticized view of a lifestyle without machinery, IC engines, electricity, etc. The fact is, they've never had to live that way, and so don't understand what it was really like. For those who have, it was a very arduous, difficult lifestyle, a daily struggle of hard labor to secure the basics of survival. It involved dawn-to-dusk labor and nothing else, and I'm talking difficult, sweaty, physical labor of a type 99% of the population has never done (certainly not the elite Luddites, for whom typing on a keyboard is their idea of "work", or welfare types in the cities). It was a lifestyle where very few children ever went beyond a grade school education, because they had to go to work on the farm. The average lifespan ended in your forties, because half of your children would die in childhood.
So maybe the thing to do is to take these agrarian romanticists and Luddities out to the wilderness, leave them there, and say, okay, you wanted it, you got it, you're on your own. Check back with them every so often. My guess is as soon as they can't keep warm at night, or go hungry for a few days, they'll be crying to go back to their heated loft apartments, ready to jump into their car and head to the nearest McDonald's.
Friggan hippies from Madison. They are growing wacky weed there somewhere. You can bet on it.
Yes, exactly! The cost may be less, but production will be much less.
Remember, there is a good reason that oil is so valuable and widely used - it is a lot of energy per volume. Oxen are less. You put less in, you get less out and vice versa. You get less, it becomes more expense and less available. And, people have to work much, much harder. It is what it is.
You mean with a magic ox you do not need fertilizer, and weed and bug management not to mention all the types of plant fungus.
The leisure most people take for granted didn't exist.
One important difference is those farmers didn't have to pay 7% sales tax and many other taxes were lower.Those farmers and their town cousins weren't yet forced to support the tens of millions on various federal and state welfare handouts nor huge foreign aid grants to the enemies of America.
Just payment of the current property taxes is a burden on most people these days.
If we really want simpler lives,we must reduce the government at all levels.
“Farming with draft animals, while more time consuming, is VERY profitable. Ask the Amish about it.”
Your “more-time-consuming” phrase is very telling. If you assign no “expense” to your own labor, lots of stuff is “VERY profitable.” Heck, get rid of the oxen and resort to hoe tilling, and profit will really soar.
In a year’s time the carbon footprint of an oxen must be higher than a small tractor. Not that it makes any difference to me.
I wonder, how are the solid democrat masses in Detroit going to like farming behind a mule on one of those bold, new, urban farms in return for the benefit check? I can't wait for the ads with Michelle telling 'her people' how physical labor in return for their welfare is a good thing and will make their lives on the welfare plantation happier and more rewarding. Yes sir, they can sing, dance, breed as needed, and be real happy just like they were the last time democrat nobles had them all in one place where they could look after them.
John Deere stockholder here... I’m not worried. They’re seeing fantastic demand for tractors. Food inflation, and growing demand from developing countries more than offsets fuel costs...
This story doesn’t make sense. A 80 Acre farm???? That’s not a farm, that is someones backyard in Texas.
It’s a british sponge, you oaf!
“But, but, won’t it produce ox-flatulence and kill the ozone, thereby radiating the earth and killing all the farm crops.”
This grave danger is out-weighed by the ability to turn to your fellow elite at the local organo-foot market and say, “well WE only buy organic produce that is grown from oxen-tilled fields, it’s much more “rustic” that way.” The higher cost would be worth it to out-trend all your snobbish foody peers, and watch them sadly putter away in their prii(the plural of “prius”).