All tours start at the hayride ticket area. 11 Please be there at least 5 minutes before your tour starts for pick-up.
Have you ever wanted to explore the working horse farm below the overlook at Homestead Heritage? Join us for a small group tour of the farm in the Brazos River valley where we will discuss the various community farming efforts.
- Laying Hens and Mobile Chicken Coops
- Dairy Cows and Rotational Grazing
- Food Crops and Cover Crops
- Farming Equipment and Implements
- Essential Farm Infrastructure (Water, Fencing, Etc.)
- Ask Grady and Butch any question you want
Have you ever wanted to hand milk a dairy cow? Join us each morning during the fair to learn “hands-on” how to hand milk and what it takes to care for a family milk cow.
- The Basics of Dairy Cows
- Feeding a Dairy Cow and Calf
- The Basic Procedures of Hand Milking
- Milking parlor and equipment needs
- Sanitation, Handling, & Storage
Have you ever wanted to raise chickens on your homestead or sell eggs from your small farm? Maybe you would simply like to see how someone else cares for laying hens and their eggs. Join us each afternoon during the fair to help collect, clean, sort and pack eggs.
- The Basics of Laying Hens
- Choosing the Right Hens for Your Needs
- Learn about the Essential Infrastructure
- Sanitation, Handling, and Storing Eggs
Rotational GrazingHave you ever wanted to use rotational grazing on your homestead or small farm? Maybe you would simply like to see how someone else utilizes electric fencing in their livestock grazing rotation. Join us each afternoon during the fair to help move the milk cows to their next pasture.
- The Basics of Electric Fencing
- Determining Pasture Size
- Building an Electric Fence
- Moving Livestock From One Pasture to the Next
Seed StartingLearn how to start your own transplants for your garden, plus a brief overview of seed saving.
Tour GuidesGrady Phelan
Grady is the farm manager at Homestead Heritage. After growing up on a holistically minded cattle and sheep ranch in southwest Oklahoma, Grady apprenticed at Polyface Farm to learn directly from Joel Salatin. Two years later, he and his new family managed a Polyface rental farm in Middlebrook, Virginia where they cared for cattle, pigs, laying hens, broiler chickens, and turkeys, all raised on pasture. In 2014, Grady and his family moved to Texas to help start a large scale pasture poultry enterprise on an existing ranch. They are now full time farmers at Homestead Heritage where Grady manages day-to-day work on the farm.
Butch speaks regularly to groups locally and nationwide on the issues of sustainable agriculture based upon his 35 years of experience as a gardener and farmer. As an instructor at The Ploughshare Institute for the past 21 years, he has taught sustainable farming and ranching to hundreds of beginning and experienced farmers and gardeners. He has also developed numerous courses and published curriculum on these topics. In addition to teaching and research, he is a farm and ranch consultant with Homestead Farm Design. Butch and his wife, Diane, along with their children and grandchildren own and operate Aquilla Valley Farm, a small, diversified family farm north of Waco, Texas.