April 09, 2018
The Next Generation | hosted by Lexi Marek
Jan Jones is a woman who turned to farming in a time when she needed to readjust her path in life. Little did she know when she returned home is that she would find her path right there on the land she grew up on.
Jan is the 5th generation on her family’s farm. Generations before her have spread out within a two-mile radius, always in Decatur County, Georgia. She grew up on the farm, but went to school with the goal of being in publishing. After graduation she couldn’t find a job in publishing and became an English teacher. She quickly learned that teaching was not her passion, so she returned home. After helping her dad on the farm, she realized that the farm was the place where she belonged.
Jan was someone who I instantly clicked with; she was my kind of person. Chill enough to roll with the flow but passionate enough to chase her dreams. After arriving at her farm, she talked me through her daily duties. I met her dad, Jerry, who works with Jan every day. As we looked around the farm, the Jones’s pointed to different directions from their farm, going over their family history. I, like Jan, am part of a family that consists of just daughters. In farming tradition, the sons would usually take over the farm. With the Jones’s, a son taking over the farm isn’t an option. I couldn’t help but match Jerry Jones’s tears that filled his eyes when he explained how important it is to keep the land in the family and continue what generations have built the past 100 years.
There were four things that Jan was involved in on the farm: peanuts, cattle, cotton, and her new project, honey bees. We first went to the cattle pasture and I rode shotgun in the truck with the dog, Scooter, and Jan and Jerry threw out pellets to the cows. Then it was off to learn something about something I hadn’t ever seen, peanuts.
Because of the hurricane season, the peanuts have had more rain than ideal this year. Peanuts have three pieces of equipment that are used to harvest the crop. First the peanuts are inverted; because they grow underground the peanuts have to be flipped to the top so they can dry out in the sun and wind. Then they peanuts can be ‘fluffed’ with another piece of equipment and finally about 3-5 days later they are harvested.
The cotton wasn’t ready to be harvested during the visit but being from the Midwest, it was an honor and so interesting to meet a southern FarmHer and learn about the crops that are native to the south.
After the camera extraordinaire Chris suffered a bee sting while visiting the hives, we decided that learning about three new types of agriculture was the maximum for one day. I said my goodbyes to Jan and wished her luck in the future. This FarmHer never expected to be back on the farm but she will not only carry on her family’s tradition but through her involvement in leadership organizations and within her community, is already making an impact in the agriculture industry.
Thank you to the Jones family for allowing FarmHer to visit the farm. FarmHer will air on RFD-TV this Friday at 9:30 pm ET/8:30 pm CT with a encore on Sunday. Watch video clips on YouTube here.
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The busyness of holiday preparations, year-end closing of financial books, tax preparations, loan renewals and prepay of next year’s commodity inputs may have your snow globe resembling the topsy-turviness of a blizzard. Good health and wellbeing, including mental health, is a key factor that contributes to one’s ability to keep farming.
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