How Much Does The Average 3.5 Year Old Weigh What Equipment You Need to Maintain a 3 Acre Homestead

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What Equipment You Need to Maintain a 3 Acre Homestead

There are some pieces of equipment that are really necessary to be able to keep your property in good condition. Of course, there are many “toys” that would be nice to have, but the expense of buying and maintaining them is much greater than renting them once or twice a year. Depending on how much of your land is grass just for beauty, how much is pasture or garden areas, or even chicken or sheep pens, will determine what equipment you really need. Every property needs some sort of lawn or garden tractor, unless you’re a marathon runner and want to push a mower over an acre or two twice a week in the spring. A general-purpose tractor with an engine of 20 hp or less and a 42- or 48-inch mower deck can easily handle three acres of lawn. Accessories like a spring rake that makes it easier to aerate your lawn or a lightweight snow blower for the winter can lighten your workload. Lawn rollers, seed drills, discs and harrows, rakes, and even mini-spring end loader buckets can be purchased from various tractor and subcompact tractor companies.

When shopping, you will find that tractors fall into several categories based on their capabilities. Lawn tractors are basically large lawn mowers that can pull a small trailer, a leaf rake, or maybe push some snow. A tractor will weigh more and have stronger and larger components. A tractor may have a slightly larger engine, a cast iron rear housing, and perhaps also be able to handle a snow thrower attachment. A subcompact tractor for about $12,000 is even heavier, can use wheel weights or weighted tires, front loader and backhoe attachments, and mow 5 acres more easily. The frames are also much sturdier and can move mountains of snow with ease. If you have a horse barn or plant a large garden area, a subcompact tractor will take care of all these cleaning tasks without breaking a sweat.

The etiquette of a long trailer is also a god-send for clearing leaves, moving soil, hauling gravel, or any other yard task. It’s much easier to load up the trailer with all the spring flowering plants and drive from bed to bed along with the pallets and soil supplements than it is to carry everything by hand. Moving buckets of water to pens or moving stones or firewood are tasks that can be handled by a small trailer. My trailer is now over twenty years old, and aside from some occasional paint and grease touch-ups, it’s still going strong.

A gas leaf blower and suction cup are also a real time saver. From clearing sidewalks and patios to removing leaves from flower beds, a gas leaf blower does the trick. If you have any type of hedges or shaped tree, an electric hedge trimmer will also allow you to do this task. Cutting a hundred feet of hedge by hand is no joke. A good wheelbarrow is an often overlooked tool. Don’t buy one of those $29 carts. If you’re paying around $100 or so, you’re in the right neighborhood. Oak handles, heavy duty polyethylene tub or metal (I prefer poly, it never rusts) and a ten inch tire is a minimum. Mine is now about twelve years old and I have only changed the handles once.

I have a fairly large wooded area and the grassy areas also have lots of trees. These produce just tons of fallen branches and leaves each year. I bought a small chipper for 3″ and smaller limbs and it does a good job. Anything bigger than 3″ is cut for firewood. This machine makes a good amount of mulch for us so it was worth the price.

Rotocultivating my garden once a year didn’t seem to justify buying a rototiller that would sit for 11 1/2 months of the year. The daily rental is about $45, so for $45 I work it up to our yard and the rental center store will keep it year round.

A power washer is another great tool for the average home. Washing decks or sidewalks, house siding or barn floors is made much easier with a power washer. They are fairly cheap and do a great job. Maintenance pretty much consists of making sure it is drained against freezing when in storage and checking the engine oil.

If you own these tools, you can do very well. As time goes by and you can afford it, adding some extra implements to your tractor, such as a hole digger or bulldozer blade, can make even bigger jobs easier and faster.

Ask your salesperson what size machine you need and they will be happy to help you decide. They want a happy customer to come back and recommend them to others.

Pete Ackerson

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