Smallholding Experience Day

Emma & Steven moved to Maes Mawr in July 2016, having had animals previously on a separate site from their home address, they wanted to simplify life and enjoy the experience of having their animals right outside the house.

Having offered chicken keeping courses before they now want to share their experiences in what they have learnt along the way to creating a smallholding from scratch and creating a thriving business on site.

The course is intended to be a broad range of subjects around the matter of buying or running a smallholding.

Location; Maes Mawr, Llanllyfni LL54 6DG

Cost; £95 including lunch and a cream tea in the afternoon.

9.30am - 4.30pm

We aim to fit in the below topics, however this is a relaxed day and questions are invited.

9.30-9.50am Arrival and time to enjoy a cup of tea or coffee and get to know us and those also attending on the day.

9.50-10.30 - Finding your perfect place

We start indoors and we share our thoughts on finding your perfect place, obtaining your CPH number,, planning and setting up the layout. Considering acerage, and access, and site considerations.

10.30 - 11.30 - We walk the 5acres land and discuss land management, come and see how we've drained the land, how this is an ongoing process and how we are creating hedging and windbreaks to protect areas of land. We will discuss weed management, grass land management, and the use of grazing animals in rotation.

11.30 - 12.30 - We will go into the Kitchen Garden where we will talk you through how we have created the garden from rough pasture. We will introduce you to the importance of composting, mulching and growing your own food throughout the year. As well as the Orchard we have a poly tunnel and we can show you how to use these on your own smallholding to create a more protected growing environment for fruit and vegetables.

12.30 - 1.30 - A chance to have a sit down and enjoy a home cooked lunch with us in the cabin. We can cater for vegetarians, vegans and any food intolerances. Please let us know when you book.

1.30 - 3.30 - We will start inside with a reality check, so many times people buy into the smallholding life and when 'reality hits home' they wonder if they've done the right thing. We will briefly talk you through the lowest points here and how we have overcome them.  We will talk you through livestock keeping, registering and reporting movements. How to source animals and what to look for when choosing your animal. Including some basic healthcare considerations and some natural remedies. A chance to meet the goats, see our dairy and get the chance to milk a goat if you would like to try. 

You will be introduced to keeping males and females together on the same plot, and basic health care issues to be checked and addressed.

Meet our small flock of sheep who are a mixed breed, Jacob, Soap and Shetland. we can discuss the other breeds and help you pick a breed that would suit you.

We will then introduce you to our pigs, see the benefit of keeping some pet pigs and what they could do for you. We will talk you through the needs for breeding pigs and raising them for meat.

We will introduce you to the horses, and explain how they are helping with grazing and land management. 

In this outdoor session we will also give you the time to explore at your own pace any aspects of our smallholding that interest you specifically. You are welcome to wander and re-visit anything you wish to see further. 

4.00 - 4.30 - Afternoon cream tea and an opportunity to talk with each other and ask any further questions.

Assuming the weather is kind you will also get the opportunity to enjoy the gardens and the views that Maes Mawr has to offer.

What To Wear

We will be outside for part of the day come rain or shine, please wear suitable and sturdy footwear. Sun cream and hats if the weather is forecast warm. 

What to bring

We will provide you with a printed information pack, however a note book might be useful and you are welcome to take any photos as we go round.

We have a maximum number of 6 on the course (unless pre-arranged with us) so that the group can all enjoy what we have on offer and get the opportunity to get hands on where necessary.


We have no accommodation on site however there are two holiday houses within 3 minute walk of our smallholding and we are linked to Island Farm Living, who offer off grid accommodation and glamping pods and who also offer a number of crafty courses onsite should you wish to attend one of our courses whilst on holiday.  

Booking a Place

Please send us an email to book your place with us and let us know how you'd like to pay. Once you have our confirmation of your place booked we will send out a short information pack for you detailing our location, directions and confirming any dietary choices you have made including a receipt for payment.


We accept payment via a bank transfer, alternatively you can send the money via PayPal using the link for 'Sending money to family or friends' to avoid charges when using your card or PayPal account to send money.

Cancellation Policy

We would only cancel your booking if the course does not meet its minimum number to run. We would however attempt to offer you an alternative future date. If this was not possible, or unacceptable to you, then we would refund all monies paid by you. Our liability would not extend beyond this refund. Due to our small business, we reserve the right to make a full charge for cancellations made within 7 days of the course date. This charge will only apply if we are unable to sell your place on the course.

All images taken are strictly the property of Emma & Steven Bennett.

© 2020 by Emma & Steven @thebluecottageplantnursery. Proudly created with

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