CaTO’s Farm Management – Farm Buying Tips

Okay, for a bit of old, interesting yet wise counsel, i’m going to share some bits from a reprinted book of 1910 translated by a Virginia Farmer from the Latin Eclogues from the De Re Rustica of M. Porcius Cato of Roman times.

The reprint is a tiny portion of the Eclogues and is entitled ‘Cato’s Farm Management‘ with an ISBN 978-1-330-56017-4. I think i purchased mine through Amazon, but can be found at Forgotten Books.

It is noted in the intro “Cato practised and taught intense cultivation, the use of leguminous plants for soil improvement, the importance of live stock in a system of general farming, and the effective preservation of manure.” Bearing in mind that Cato died 149 years before the Christian era.

This is the ‘new’ revelation and movement now coined as ‘regenerative farming’, with the same principles laid out over 2000 years ago. As the Scriptures say, ‘there is nothing new under the sun.’ Ecclesiastes 1:9.

Cato on Buying a Farm

  1. Give heed to the appearance of the neighborhood – a flourishing country should show its prosperity

2 Take care that you choose a good climate, not subject to destructive storms, and a soil that is naturally strong.

3) If possible, your farm should be at the foot of a mountain looking to the West, in a healthy situation, where labor and cattle can be had, well watered, near a good sized town, and either on the sea or navigable river, or else on a good and much frequented road.

4) Chose a place which has not often changed ownership, one which is sold unwillingly, that has buildings in good repair.

5) When you inspect the farm, look to see how many wine presses and storage vats there are; where there are none of these you can judge what the harvest is. On the other hand, it is not the number of farming implements, but what is done with them that counts. Where you find few tools, it is not an expensive farm to operate.

More to come!

Choice Hotels

Years ago, i decided to patronize Choice hotels and i’m seldom disappointed based on price -in other words – you get what you pay for. I quickly decided against Rodeway Inns after too many bad experiences, though there were a couple good ones. Econolodge, the same, with the exception of the one in Walnut, IA. Wow, i was impressed. On the upper end of the chain, there have never been any issues.

Downloading their app makes it super easy to search and book whilst on the road. A points program pays for a free night once in a while.

Having been a former travel consultant and being on a few FAMs and site inspects, i automatically have a critical eye to detail, yet i feel i can still give some wiggle room based on the location of the hotel and the price.

The only kicker i have with Choice Hotel properties is the breakfast which is included. They have the same level of quality or lack thereof so it is clear that individual properties have no choices in whether or not to use fresh products from local producers. This would be, in my opinion, a huge selling point for the hotel as well as provide a huge upgrade in tastiness and healthfulness with possible little to no price increase. Can you imagine coming down to a breakfast of eggs from pastured hens?! Or freshly made pastry and biscuits? With real butter, natural yoghurt, and real milk. Okay, most states won’t allow real milk.

Honestly, getting paid to do site inspects and making helpful suggestions might be a really fun thing to do. Maybe i need to see if there is such a job.

A few things i look for:

3) Dust should NOT be present anywhere in the room, including the ledge of the shower stall.

4) Toilet paper should always roll from over the top and have a fold in the end.
For goodness sakes, if you are going to paint, take down the wall hangings first – painting around is very noticeable and indicates a lack of care and consideration to guests.

Now, those are a few things, but others include:

1) an indication that someone sat on a made bed

2) of course a coffee maker, refrigerator, and microwave not cleaned and/or contain leftovers from a previous use. Yuck! Years ago, the boys and i stayed in another brand hotel in Kingsville, Texas and found a huge pastry (we think) in the microwave with half inch thick mold!!! Haven’t forgotten that experience.

None of these cost even a penny! Why not do it right?

I typically overlook wear and tear and focus more on cleanliness, comfort, and good repair unless the wear and tear can keep cleaning from being effective, Wear and tear is more present in smaller communities and less expensive properties where some upgrades simply can’t be afforded.

Treasures from Washington

Dallas and i went to Washington state a few falls ago and collected a few treasures from our hikes. Finally going to get around and try to stratify and start these chestnuts. Hope they aren’t too dry or old to sprout~

Shells, chestnuts, claws