We started our farm as a way to bring up our children in a beautiful and healthy environment. We are close to being fully self-sufficient and at meals virtually everything on our plate is from the farm.
It took almost a year for us to find our farm, many weekends dragging the kids around, bribing them with visits to the local bakeries. The day after we gave up our search, and resigned ourselves to staying in Gisborne for a bit longer, we got an email. The farm was in the perfect location, in Kerrie, in the hills, at the end of an unknown dirt road, however it was covered in 30m pine trees, 60 acres of the 115 that made up the farm. Three years later and after a lot of mulching, burning and stump removal we are now surrounded by fabulous countryside and seven hills – hence the name.
Chickens were the first animals we got on the farm, followed closely by guinea pigs! In March 2007, we bought 24 hens of all different breeds. We so loved the eggs, we immediately looked into having layers and selling eggs. I loved having chicks so we started breeding our own hens. We especially loved the blue and green eggs of the Araucanas, so in the summer of 2009 when I was tired of doing all the work I presented Josh with an idea. If he looked after all the hens and did all the work he could have all the money. And so Josh started selling eggs, and began his journey of building a brand he named Josh’s Rainbow Eggs, that now 7 years later is selling 4000 dozen a week into Coles, Woolworths and independent supermarkets like LaManna Direct and Foodworks/IGAs. But you can read about Josh’s story in his own words here on the website.
We bought 20 Dorper sheep in March 2010, and over the years our flock has grown to 80 ewes and 70 lambs. When we tasted our first lamb we knew we wanted to grow lambs and sell them. We sold lamb for several years, although now most is for us, as the eggs have taken centre stage. We have eight beautiful Jersey cows that Jess and Jemma have milked at various times over the last 5 years. We have made the most delicious yogurt and cheeses from Maisy and Mirabella’s milk. Tamsyn manages the gardens with 32 raised beds for vegetables and two berry patches and an espalier fruit garden. The greenhouse and polytunnel allow for us to grow food all year round, and also to have a great crop of heat loving tomatoes and capsicums which are most prolific in the warm polytunnel. In the Food for Thought section you can read growing your own garden.