Returning Home Farm

Returning Home Farm

Returning Home Farm is an extension of Penn Forest Natural Burial Park that provides model projects in sustainability. Penn Forest owns 35-acres of land in the Penn Hills/Verona area, but only about 2-acres are currently used for green burials. Another 10-acres are set aside as a wildlife refuge area. That leaves about 23-acres that can be used for other sustainability projects that benefit the community.

Ongoing projects include:

  • Raising goats for clearing brush in burial areas
  • Raising chickens and ducks for eggs (we share them with visitors when we have extra)
  • Bee hives
  • Blacksmith training classes
  • Hiking trails
  • Tree/shrub planting for forest restoration
  • A quarter acre native PA meadow restoration project

Planned future projects include:

  • A sally garden for raising willows for basket making (and maybe coffins)
  • A hoop greenhouse for raising tea
  • A berry garden
  • A mushroom walk trail
  • A Hügelkultur garden

We are always open to additional sustainability projects. If you’d like to bring your project to RHF, please tell us about your idea.

Returning Home Farm Pictures

Penn Forest Cemetery Entrance and Farmstead
Penn Forest Cemetery Entrance and Farmstead
Penn Forest Cemetery Entrance and Farmstead
Southwest Corner of the Barn
Southwest Corner of the Barn
Southwest Corner of the Barn
Interior – Barn Office Door – Hayloft Above
Interior – Barn Office Door – Hayloft Above
Interior – Barn Office Door – Hayloft Above
Barn Office
Barn Office
Barn Office
Stalls
Stalls
Stalls
Feed Room
Feed Room
Feed Room
Bunny Hutch
Bunny Hutch
Bunny Hutch
Blacksmith Training Shed
Blacksmith Training Shed

Penn Hills resident, Ben Barron, 17, has been blacksmithing for a couple of years. He wants to teach people his trade at Returning Home Farm. Ben’s mother, Anita Weingarten, applied for a Sprout Fund grant and was awarded a $1000 grant to buy an anvil and forge. We built this Education Shed so people can share their skills with others, starting with Ben’s blacksmithing classes. There will be 4 sessions of 2 classes each starting on April 2nd. Let Pete know if you’re interested.

Blacksmith Training Shed
Blacksmith Training Shed
Blacksmith Training Shed
Blacksmith Training Shed
Chicken Coop
Chicken Coop
Chicken Coop
Chicken Coop
Chicken Coop
Chicken Coop
Chicken Coop
Chicken Coop
Chicken Coop
Chicken Coop
Chicken Coop
Chicken Coop
The Pond
The Pond

The Pond. All the rain water from the barn and blacksmith shop roofs is fed into this pond—a home for our new Indian Runner ducks.

The Pond
The Pond
The Pond

The Pond. All the rain water from the barn and blacksmith shop roofs is fed into this pond—a home for our new Indian Runner ducks.

The Pond
Nigerian Dwarfs – Madi, Tourmaline, Munch and Skunk
Nigerian Dwarfs – Madi, Tourmaline, Munch and Skunk

Goats. (Three or four more Boers will be coming by spring, and both Madi and Tourmaline are expecting.)

Nigerian Dwarfs – Madi, Tourmaline, Munch and Skunk
Chickens
Chickens

Polish Hens – Cora and Lora- They just joined our flock of 17 mixed breed chickens

Chickens
Boer – Scout
Boer – Scout

-Goats. (Three or four more Boers will be coming by spring, and both Madi and Tourmaline are expecting.)

Boer – Scout
Ducks
Ducks

Indian Runner Ducks, Jill and Jack (l to r)

Ducks
Ducks
Ducks

Indian Runner Ducks, Jill and Jack (l to r)

Ducks
Boer – Zorro
Boer – Zorro

-Goats. (Three or four more Boers will be coming by spring, and both Madi and Tourmaline are expecting.)

Boer – Zorro
Pete, Sophie, and Nancy
Pete, Sophie, and Nancy

Sophie, our English Shepherd Puppy. English Shepherds are a breed of general purpose farms dogs. They can herd goats and other livestock, rid the farm of of vermin, chase off predators and still be loving family dogs. Sophie was born on October 23rd and is already a big part of the Returning Home Farm family.

Pete, Sophie, and Nancy
Sophie
Sophie

Sophie, our English Shepherd Puppy. English Shepherds are a breed of general purpose farms dogs. They can herd goats and other livestock, rid the farm of of vermin, chase off predators and still be loving family dogs. Sophie was born on October 23rd and is already a big part of the Returning Home Farm family.

Sophie