I'll DeFinately be a FARMER

By UplandDood | My Crypto Story | 12 Nov 2020

  • When I read about the DeFiFARMer Writing Contest, I was delighted because “Fiction, non-fiction and everything in between is fair game” and nothing was mentioned about it being a technical paper on DeFi farming!

It just so happen that I have been occupied with 3 things lately and 1 of these relates to farming. Well, kind of. Why? Because in order to start farming, you will need a farm to start with.

This is based on a true story. I’ve always wanted to say that.

My story started with the onset of the pandemic. I’ve noticed that food is a critical necessity in dire times. If you’re relying on others to provide that for you, then you’re at their mercy. By others, I mean the suppliers, the sellers, the logistics, or even government mandates that severely restricts our ability to obtain such necessity. How do you overcome this challenge?

One viable option albeit a long-term goal that I can think of, is being self-sustainable. For me, that would mean moving out of the city and getting a small plot of land to farm.

My family and I have given this some thoughts. A piece of land small enough to be manageable and yet large enough to provide for the whole family and produce enough to generate a decent income.

Based on that, we came up with the following basic requirements before we go land hunting:

  1. Locality – not too close and yet not too far away from modern conveniences
  2. Size – no larger than 3 acres (1.21 hectare) so it’s manageable
  3. Cost – fits within our budget
  4. Accessibility – must be accessible by car & not a 4 wheel drive vehicle.

After establishing this, we went looking for suitable lands for consideration.

Through a property agent, I found online, we set up an appointment to do a site inspection of the lands. We had shortlisted 2 pieces of land to visit. On that particular day, the agent arrived late. Not a good sign. Then we were told to follow her and her colleague to the land location. Before that, she told us that the land is only accessible with a 4 Wheel Drive vehicle. Strike one!


(Image note: This was actually the better part of the road. You'll notice that there's an opened gate in the foreground. We had to go through someone else's land)

I’m sure you’ve heard enough with regards to DeFi farming; despite all the wonderful write-ups on farming potentials, always DYOR!

Even though I don’t have farming nor land experience, I know enough to make a sound decision. I grew up in a farming environment.

I was not so happy that the access road to the land was hilly and dirt road. Fortunately, it didn’t rain earlier and wasn’t raining at that time. It should have been a warning sign to me when the agent recommended to inspect the lands in the morning and not in the afternoon for fear of rain.  (Before I called her, it had rained in the afternoon for the last few days).

After 45 minutes of going through some really rough terrain, they stopped their vehicle. She alighted and informed that she'd taken us on the wrong road. I kid you not. Strike 2!

She then told me there’s another access route another 10 minutes from where we stopped but required us to walk about 10-15 minutes to reach the land. I figured, since we are already this far along, might as well humor her and went along with her recommendation. So, we drove to the other route access and parked.

We arrived at the land after some hiking. In my mind, an inaccessible land by car is out of the question. Regardless, I still had a look around since we're already there.


(Image Note: This is the entrance after the 10-15 min trek. It was accessible by a 4 Wheel Drive vehicle but I found out later from the neighboring land that he had blocked the access through his land. Essentially this land is an 'island' with direct road access a big problem.)

It was a nice piece of land and taken good care of by the current owner. When I asked her why the owner wanted to sell, the agent wasn’t able to answer me. Took her a full minute before she blurted out,

“he has many pieces of land and wanted to sell this piece.”

My spider-sense was tingling. Something didn't sound right.

After looking around a bit, we decided to hike back to our vehicles and proceeded to look at the second piece of land.


(Image note: Both lands she showed us have no natural water source. Strike 3! Both lands rely on something like the above tanks to store land water for land use. In extended drought or dry season, getting water for the farm will be an issue.)

To cut a long story short, I noticed there were issues with both parcels of land and she wasn’t forthcoming with me. Remember, always DYOR. Have some basic understanding of the land, e.g. accessibility (do you have to go through someone else’s land?), if it’s fertile, and if there’s a natural water source. I’ll come back to the water source requirement in the next paragraph.

A couple of days later, I ended up finding a piece of land through a family friend. It was the perfect piece of land. As you can see from the photo below, the land is fertile. There's a nice running stream. Natural water is an important criterion and one of the main elements I require. Yes, you can rely on government-supplied water but can you imagine the cost of watering your farm with that? Exorbitant transaction gas fees come to mind.


(Image note: The small river is ideal. In fact, most part of the stream is shallow enough to wade in. On the right side of the photo that's slightly overexposed, you can see a sandy area. Imagine having a barbeque grill and a picnic bench there.)

The land deal is essentially sealed. It was a verbal agreement and I’m waiting for the paperwork and subsequently the legal process to secure it.

Prior to looking for land, I already have an idea of what to cultivate on this land. This is an important process. Can you imagine still putting your hard-earned money in the bank earning negligible returns after you have discovered the much better returns you can get from DeFi farming? Likewise, for me, traditional farming is out of the question. The ROI wasn't there for land this size.

The question is - based on the environment, what can I plant to get the highest yield? Because the land is located in a tropical climate, I have narrowed it down to 2 candidates - the Vanilla &.Durian plants.


Image Source: The Huffpost.com

From my research, I found out that it takes the Vanilla vines between 2 to 3 years to mature and start flowering. I can plant a total of 3000 vanilla plants in 3 acres of land. Once it starts yielding, I can get around 500gm of vanilla green beans per acre per plant, which means a total of 1500kg for 3 acres. With prices of green beans ranging from $55 to $62 per kg of green beans, the total income from 3 acres ranges from $82,500 to $93,000 per annum.

Since vanilla needs shades and some sunshine, I plan to compliment vanilla cultivation with Durian trees. Durian trees are much taller and will be able to provide the necessary shade for the vanilla vines.


Image Source: TheCultureTrip.com (Image note: The durian fruit. Yes, the whole fruit looks like a weapon.)

What is Durian? Good question. Its scientific name is Durio zibethinus. In most parts of Asia, it is known as the King of Fruits. Many who dare to try it will say that ‘It smells like hell but tastes like heaven’. Personally, I think it smells more like smelly socks. You either love it or hate it. There’s no middle ground when it comes to this fruit. I won’t bore you with the details. You can DYOR. I've listed a few resources for reference at the end of this story.

The durian trees mature between 4 to 7 years, depending on whether it’s cloned or seed planted. At full maturity, an acre planted with durian trees can produce enough fruits to generate an income of approximately $19,500 per acre.

All in all, a fertile 3 acres of farmland planted with Vanilla & Durian can produce an approximate income of $150,000 annually.

Furthermore, I can plant vegetables and other smaller fruit trees for my own consumption. Bees farming and rearing livestock for eggs, milk, and meat are DeFinitely part of the plan.

Granted, this is a simple approximation. Even after factoring in cultivation cost & time, it is still well worth the investment. I get to work on the farm and eat of its fruits, so to speak. My family and I will have a healthier lifestyle by consuming fresh unadulterated foods and breathing in much cleaner air.

All that is left to plan now is to get a farmhouse built by the river with a barbeque grill by the side. Picture perfect! Oh, one more thing. I may need to get some advice from farmer Chad on how to further maximize yield in FARMING.





Header Image Credit: Unsplash-Jake Gard

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I live in the Metaverse, particularly in Upland and am building my business there. I only visit real-life to share my experience. If you're as excited as I am about everything virtual, come join me at https://discover.upland.me/UplandDood!

My Crypto Story
My Crypto Story

A journey of one Bitcoin starts with a Satoshi. This is my story of that journey and my opinion of the future of Crypto...taken one step at a time. Drop me a line or an encouragement and let's take this roller coaster ride of a journey together. Thanks for dropping by.

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