A farmer, educator and regenerative agriculture expert dedicated to helping you make a good living and live the good life whilst being of benefit to the whole.

A farmer, educator and regenerative agriculture expert dedicated to helping you make a good living and live the good life whilst being of benefit to the whole.

A farmer, educator and regenerative agriculture expert dedicated to helping you make a good living and live the good life whilst being of benefit to the whole.

Chances are you’re here because you know me as the co-owner and director of Ridgedale Farm.

With diligent planning, innovative approaches and a lot of hard work, we’re making city wages a) in the middle of nowhere, b) in one of the world’s most regulated countries, c) in a very short growing season, and d) on a shoestring budget.

Not only are we restoring soils and habitats and producing the highest possible quality of food for our local community, we also get to enjoy a great lifestyle ourselves.

Our own farm, however, is only a small part of the farming I’m engaged in. Ridgedale has simultaneously become Europe’s leading example of Regenerative Agriculture and an educational hub for people all around the world through workshops, trainings and internships.

And because of the natural limitations on attendee numbers, I’ve also created what’s arguably the world’s most comprehensive online training on Regenerative Agriculture.

To reach as many people as possible, I’ve recently written a 750 page manual, plus I share loads of free content on my blog that reaches more than 80000 people.

All these efforts have directly or indirectly led to new regenerative farms and projects sprouting up all over the globe and particularly in Europe, where we’re based.

And so the important part of this story isn’t me, but the people I’ve had the honour of teaching and the way they are changing the world. To understand how all that became possible, though, let’s back it up a bit.

Our own farm, however, is only a small part of the farming I’m engaged in. Ridgedale has simultaneously become Europe’s leading example of Regenerative Agriculture and an educational hub for people all around the world through workshops, trainings and internships.

And because of the natural limitations on attendee numbers, I’ve also created what’s arguably the world’s most comprehensive online training on Regenerative Agriculture.

To reach as many people as possible, I’ve recently written a 750 page manual, plus I share loads of free content on my blog that reaches more than 80000 people.

All these efforts have directly or indirectly led to new regenerative farms and projects sprouting up all over the globe and particularly in Europe, where we’re based.

And so the important part of this story isn’t me, but the people I’ve had the honour of teaching and the way they are changing the world. To understand how all that became possible, though, let’s back it up a bit.

I was barely 15 when I knew I wanted to be a farmer.

Growing up in a rural setting, I spent a lot of time outdoors. I loved to watch the lambs run races in the fields, to catch my own fish and roast them on the fire, to inhale the moist smell of forest floor. There was a simple joy and a connectedness to being in nature that nothing else could compare with.

As a teenager, I suddenly realised I wanted my own kids to have a similar experience, and I figured that life on a farm must be the best possible version of it.

There was only one problem with that dream. Since my parents weren’t farmers, I neither knew how to farm nor was I inheriting any land.

Luckily, I’ve always seen challenges as problem-solving opportunities. From my rigorous studies and engagement in elite sports, I was used to setting and achieving goals, and so I crafted a plan for becoming a farmer. First on the list was to get the necessary education.

Cut to age 18. No more than a few months into my studies at ag school for organic crop production and horticulture, I realised that I was in the wrong place; this institution couldn’t teach me what I was looking to learn. I had zero interest in chemical application rates, considering indebtedness the normal seemed absurd to me, and the general academic level was very basic.

So after graduating, I set about finding people who were doing things differently.

In Australia, I came across something called Permaculture. I really liked the ethics part of it and felt that the whole design approach must be beneficial, but to my frustration none of the people I met could explain to me why they did what they did nor show me any data that proved it actually worked.

After further searching, I learned of Yeoman’s Keyline Design, which really levelled up the land planning work I was doing.

And years later, I was recommended to take a look at Allan Savory’s Holistic Management teachings. It’s fair to say that Allan’s work, particularly the Holistic Context part of it, has revolutionised the way I go about not just farming but everything in life.

While I draw on the teachings and example of many great people, those three approaches, Permaculture Design, Keyline Design and Holistic Management, really form the basis of all my work and teachings.

This combination of good design and good planning, both when it comes to the land, the enterprises and the business-side of things, is what makes Ridgedale as well as the farms of my students work.

Which brings me to you.

My guess is you’re here because you, too, dream of becoming a farmer, and you’re wondering if you have what it takes. While I can’t answer that for you, I can tell you that posing yourself that question is a good start, and that everything you need to learn to join us in our regenerative efforts is available to you here.

Will farming be hard work? Absolutely. In fact, it will probably be the hardest work you’ve ever done, but, if you ask me, also the most satisfying work one could have.

Listen. You’ll be working with beautiful plants and animals, be outside most of the day, keep fit, control your own workflow, have endless learning opportunities and supply epic food to your community (not to mention eat it yourself!). And if you have children, you’ll be able to give them a childhood money can’t buy.

As regenerative farmers, we get to be of service to the whole by restoring nature, re-creating vibrant local community, and improving food security for our children’s generation.

Now if that’s not a life worth living, I don’t know what is.

And if you decide that that’s the kind of life you want, I’d love to help you get started smart. Yes, even if you don’t currently have any land or significant savings.

While being a farmer does require a solutions-focused mindset, an entrepreneurial vein and a sound level of practical ability, making a good living farming isn’t something only a few select people are capable of.

It’s what most of us can achieve if we put our minds to it and are willing to work hard, consistently. And it can be achieved at much greater speed if you learn from someone who knows what it takes and how it’s done.

I’m known for my pragmatic approach. While I have strong values and grand visions, I’m always focused on how to make things, in this case farms, work. Because if they aren’t working, a.i. building soil and habitat, making you money and feeding your community epic food, well, you won’t be a farmer for long. At least not a happy one.

I can tell you why I do things, not just how. I can give you the data and the numbers that no one could or would show me. I can teach you how to start a farm that’s right for your unique context and situation and how to make it profitable, fast. And I’m right there in the trenches with you, farming and experimenting and passing on any new insights and learnings.

If this sounds useful to you, stay in touch. The best way to do that is to become a Perkins Insider. This will make sure you get my latest free content delivered by email every Tuesday, and now and then I’ll be in touch at other times if I have giveaways, scholarship opportunities and offerings coming up.

Do come follow along on Instagram and Facebook, too, but if you’re ready to get this farming dream of yours moving, make sure you become a Perkins Insider first.

Because when you do, you’ll get access to my free mini course  4 Fundamentals of Making Small Farms Work, which will help you gain clarity, avoid common pitfalls and start crafting an actionable plan. Let’s get you from vague dream to achievable goal.

Thanks for popping by – I’m exited for the farming adventure that awaits you.

Best,

Richard

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