Gardeners’ Corner

Word got around about our amazing composted manure in the spring, and we were cleaned out of it.  There is no composted manure available right now – it has taken a longer time than expected to decompose.  Right now we are looking at mid-November for the next batch to be ready.

Please note that we can no longer offer this for free.  We are asking a $20 donation per carload and a minimum of a $40 donation per truckload.


It’s gorgeous. It looks, smells, and feels like dirt but it’s fully composted and aged manure all from our sanctuary animals, mixed with straw bedding and hay.  And it’s come from happy, healthy animals.


We have a self-serve manure bunker outside our gate which is refilled at the end of each day.  There is also a donation box.  We have a suggested donation of $20 per carload.

We have a tractor-savvy volunteer on-hand Friday mornings from 9-12, but please make an appointment first. Email or text 301-674-5716.  We have a suggested donation of $40 per truckload.

Masks are required for entry to the farm.


Yes, but only limited volunteers are trained to load up into pickup trucks/dump trailers.  You must make an appointment in advance if you need your vehicle loaded up by the tractor, because we may not have anyone on hand to help you all the time. We do not allow visitors to run our tractor.


Yes.  If you wish to bring buckets or large contractor bags to load up, you may help yourself – please bring your own shovels and buckets/bags.

WHERE DO I GO ON THE FARM? (truck loads only)

Click to see full-sized map with instructions

  1.  Outside gates are always closed.  You need to close them behind you before driving up.  Please do not block the driveway.
  2. Drive up to the left side of the house to the Farm Office and ask for which path to drive up.
  3. If the pasture is dry enough, you may drive directly through it.  If not, we will direct you around the right side of all the barns.
  4. Please drive very very slowly.  The animals are free-range on the farm and do not pay attention to vehicles.  You must watch for both small and large animals.


We have a suggested donation of $20 per carload (self serve by the manure bunker outside our gate) and $40 per truckload.

Donations not only help pay for food for the animals, but they help us maintain our tractor which is how we are able to give you such great compost!


We have had weeks when the farm was simply too wet for vehicles to drive up to the compost pile.  Please check with us before setting out.

Also – wet compost is heavy compost. We recommend you do not come when it has been raining or is currently raining.


The compost is made from the manure of our animals: cows, goats, sheep, alpacas, llamas, horses, geese, chickens, plus bedding (pine shavings and straw) and uneaten hay.  Note: we are not “organic”, but we do not use pesticides or any kind of chemicals on the property. All animals are free range, happy, and healthy, and their primary diet is orchard grass, timothy hay, grain, and fresh fruits and vegetables.

Reports back from gardeners say that this stuff is magic.

We have both fully composted and hot piles (and everything in between).

Catalyst Compost: SMOKIN’! If you need hot manure to get your own compost pile cooking fast, you should bring tins or heat-proof cannisters. This stuff will get your compost broken down much faster, and will add vital nutrients.

Magic Mountains of Manure: 100% composted manure, multi-flavored: gifts from cows, goats, sheep, horses, and a variety of fowl, plus straw and hay, all cooked, regularly turned, and ready to go. Can be put directly on working gardens and lawns.


Little Herbie to get Prostheses!

Little Herbie was at the auction house.  The livestock auction.  This is a very scary place, even to older animals. Imagine how it must have been for this 3 month old baby who couldn’t even walk properly. Herbie was only 3 months old and was all by himself. You’ll see from his photos that his front legs are deformed. But .. a woman saw him and cried, and bid on him so as to save his life.

Through our connections with an animal control agency in West Virginia, we brought Herbie to our farm in May of 2020.

Herbie gets around quite well using his front knees to navigate, but long term we worry about spinal damage, arthritis, not to mention organ misalignment.  So we took Herbie to Bionic Pets in Sterling, VA where he got fitted for prosthetic legs!

We are trying to raise $3,000 to help with Herbie’s new legs. Can you chip in to help this little guy walk properly again?

Santa Letter items 2019

Many thanks to all the wonderful and kind people who have sent gifts by mail and brought gifts in person for the animals this holiday season! It’s been just a joy for everyone! Folks requested a summary of what’s been received and, so that is included below and will be updated daily.

PLEASE NOTE: Many boxes of gifts arrived with no notation in them as to who they were from. If you’d like to receive a charitable contribution receipt for your gift, please contact us at  Also, if you have ordered something and/or don’t see that your item has been marked as received, please contact us so we can check.

Thank you again – these gifts really make a difference to everyone at the farm!

Items with lines through them have been received and thank you!

Animal Item URL
Cracky Litter
Indoor grass
Bruno Training halter
Jenny Goat treats
Mother lode of treats
Heat lamp
Waldo Q-tips
Sorting panels
Cotton swabs
Petey Halter
Salt block
Jolly ball
Jethro Bow Tie Collar
Dee Dee Grooming kit
Face brush
Feed storage bin
Gallo Bugs
Heat lamp
Heat lamp bulbs
Ricardo Collar
Lead rope
Sam Pee pads
Zero Odor
Zoe Treats
Hay treats
Madison Work Gloves
Heat lamp bulbs
Senna Fan
Fly mask
May May Mealworms
Vet wrap
Pippa Collar
Cookie Cutter
Nicole Wide tooth comb
George chin Cage pan
Dust bath
George goose Heated poultry waterer
Grass seed
Ray Ray Stall Guard
Blueberry Red Wheat
White wheat
Nesting box bottoms
Brandy Rake
Barn contribution
Old Vinnie Hoof trimmers
Drench gun
Cydectin de-wormer
Little Vinnie Mineral Block
Zoom audio recorder
Marguerite Bowl
Tractor tires

New Barn Underway

Progress on barn raising fund

It takes a long time to put up a new barn – we have to be very smart about the placement, the space used (since we have a small property), and the design – to make sure it can accommodate a variety of needs and many sizes of animals.

Our new barn shall be placed at the top of the main pasture, and will have an open architecture – this will easily accommodate our larger animals, and maybe, just maybe, could be a nice spot for a hoedown.

We will need to bring in many tons of gravel, a grader to level out the spot, and a trencher to run electricity and water to the farm. Our estimated cost at this time is $25,000.  Won’t you help us make this wonderful dream come true!?

Memorials Page

In loving memory:

Judy: In memory of Tigba and Sullivan

Kevin:  In memory of my wife Suzanne who passed away in January 2016 after fighting colorectal cancer for 13 years.

Anne:  In memory of John and his beloved cat Fred, and Judy and her love and compassion for all animals.

Veronica: In memory of my sweet Parakeet Tiki who passed away on Oct. 5

Shelly: In memory of all my sweet rescues over a lifetime, and there have been many. Now they all sit on my mantel waiting for the day I become a memory so we can all be together again!

Richard: In memory of Newman

Wish List for Zachary

Sweet Zachary, who nearly died from starvation, had a bit of a setback last week. The ongoing ulcer in his right eye erupted and the eye had to be removed.  He has had a lot of trouble putting on weight, which also caused some pressure sores.  The hospital did a biopsy and found that he has inflammatory bowel syndrome – treatable by steroids – with treatment he should start to really gain weight quickly.

We hope his hospital stay will only be a while longer.  We are welcoming donations of any amount to be made to his fund.  We have also put together a wishlist of things that you can send or bring to him that will help him out!


Cumulative Wishlist from Animals – Santa Letters 2018

Date of letter Animal Item desired Received?
12/1 Mamie, dog Bowls:




12/1 Mamie, dog Bones:




12/1 Mamie, dog Sponsorship: Received!
12/2 Don Giovanni, rabbit Apple/timothy biscuits:




12/2 Don Giovanni, rabbit Oxbow treats:




12/2 Don Giovanni, rabbit Vacuum: Received!


12/2 Don Giovanni, rabbit Sponsorship: Received!


12/3 Sweetly, goat Goat Treats:




12/3 Sweetly, goat Water guns: Received!


12/3 Sweetly, goat Sponsorship: Received!
12/4 Sullivan, dog Freezer


12/4 Sullivan, dog Bed:


12/4 Sullivan, dog Bed pads: Received!
12/4 Sullivan, dog Sponsorship: Received!
12/5 Redd, rooster Feeder: Received!
12/5 Redd, rooster Leg bands: Received!
12/5 Redd, rooster Sponsorship: Received!
12/6 Carmen, cow Cowbell: Received!
12/6 Carmen, cow Halter: Received!
12/6 Carmen, cow Large mineral feeder: Not yet!
12/6 Carmen, cow Sponsorship: Received!
12/7 Maria, cat Special food: Received!
12/7 Maria, cat Three-cat-feeder: Received!
12/7 Maria, cat Sponsorship: Received!
12/8 George, Chinchilla Replacement pan for condo: Not yet!
12/8 George, Chinchilla Replacement pan for condo- middle area: Not yet!
12/8 George, Chinchilla Perch: Received!
12/8 George, Chinchilla Chinchilla treats: Received!
12/8 George, Chinchilla Sponsorship: Not yet!
12/9 Milo, dog Bowls:


12/9 Milo, dog Bones:


12/9 Milo, dog Sponsorship: Received!
12/10 Dee Dee Donkey Hoof picks: Received!
12/10 Dee Dee Donkey Brush: Received!
12/10 Dee Dee Donkey Barn shovel: Received!
12/10 Dee Dee Donkey Sponsorship: Received!
12/11 Senna the alpaca Cookies – soft: Received!
12/11 Senna the alpaca Mrs. Pastures cookies: Received!
12/11 Senna the alpaca Minerals: Received!
12/11 Senna the alpaca Tractor bucket (please contact us for details) Not yet!
12/12 Newman Goat Vet wrap: Received!
12/12 Newman Goat Curved-tip syringes: Received!
12/12 Newman Goat Fig Newtons Received!
12/12 Newman Goat Shoe protectors for visitors: Received!
12/12 Newman Goat Sponsorship: Received!
12/13 Leo the Goat Hose quick-connects: Not yet!
12/13 Leo the Goat Hose splitters: Not yet!
12/13 Leo the Goat Fence-fixing tools: Received!
12/13 Leo the Goat
Not yet!
12/14 Ray Ray, the sheep Heater water bucket: Received!
12/14 Ray Ray, the sheep Eye wash: Received!
12/14 Ray Ray, the sheep Eye ointment: Received!
12/14 Ray Ray, the sheep Sponsorship: Received!
12/15 Waldo the pig Vitamins: Received!
12/15 Waldo the pig Coconut oil: Received!
12/15 Waldo the pig Cordless dremel: Received!
12/15 Waldo the pig
12/16 George the goose Broom for the chicken barn: Not yet!
12/16 George the goose Shovel: Received!
12/16 George the goose Extension cord: Received!
12/16 George the goose Better deal on 2 extension cords: Received!
12/16 George the goose Sponsorship: Received!
12/17 Bruno the horse Eye wash: Received!
12/17 Bruno the horse Fly mask: Received!
12/17 Bruno the horse A top loading washing machine (older model is preferred, used is just fine!) Not yet!
12/17 Bruno the horse Sponsorship: Not yet!
12/18 Salvo the horse Lead rope: Received!
12/18 Salvo the horse Lunge line: Not yet!
12/18 Salvo the horse Battery for clipper: Received!
12/18 Salvo the horse Sponsorship: Not yet!
12/19 Little Vinnie Walkie Talkies: Received!
12/19 Little Vinnie Berry-flavored goat snacks: Not yet!
12/19 Little Vinnie Sponsorship: Not yet!
12/20 Cinnamon Tunnel ledge: Received!
12/20 Cinnamon Litter box: Received!
12/20 Cinnamon Top loading washing machine (same request as Bruno!) Not yet!
12/20 Cinnamon Sponsorship: Not yet!
12/21 Angel Collar: Received!
12/21 Angel Hoof trimmer sharpener: Received!
12/21 Angel
Not yet!
12/22 Brandy Hand warmers: Received!
12/22 Brandy Hoof rasp for Brandy: Not yet!
12/22 Brandy Sponsorship: Not yet!
12/23 Madison Bandage scissors: Not yet!
12/23 Madison Blunt-tipped scissors: Not yet!
12/23 Madison Gate wheels: Not yet!
12/23 Madison
Not yet!
12/24 Ricardo Donate to the Ricardo medical fund: Not yet!
12/24 Ricardo Sponsorship: Not yet!



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Meet Louisa


Louisa was so shy when she first arrived at SGF that is was almost impossible to get near her. But little by little she has joined our farm family. She spends time with the sheep flock in front of the big fan in the summer, and she has taken a liking to our three new alpaca! Read more about Louisa.


A rabbit with attitude

A rabbit with attitude

Oreo is the most ornery rabbit you are likely to ever meet.  She has reason, although we do feel she might have mellowed a bit over all this time now.

Oreo was brought here as a boarder.  She was a very angry rabbit.  Her owners never did come to pick her up which made her even angrier.  She would lash out at anyone trying to reach into her condo to feed her or,  God forbid, pet her.  She got the nickname “Killer Rabbit”, or, a la Monty Python, “Run away, run away”.  We suspect that her early years with her original owners were not a stellar example of animal care.

Over time she has mellowed.  She is very very sweet if you let her run around and will sit in your lap for hours.  But if you reach into her condo without her permission …. UH OH!

Would you like to sponsor Oreo?