Urban Farming

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Behind a tall latilla fence, on a little piece of land with magical views of the mountain, lies the modest house and homestead, Sharon built.


Sharon remembers that soon after building her home and starting her gardens, a locust-like plague of grasshoppers infested this valley for a few summers during the early 90’s.


Someone told me to get chickens,” she says, “so I did.”

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“It’s a permaculture scene here,” she cracks in her unmistakably NYC accent, “everything kinda works together.”

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In the rustic gardens she’s carved out of the sagebrush, chickens peck and scratch in their chicken coop run, coming up, more often than not, with beaks full of worms. And grasshoppers no doubt. It feels as if one is way out in the countryside here, but in reality, it’s five minutes to town.


There’s food growing and flowers – masses of Native plantings and enclosed raised beds.

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She’s kept chickens for over twenty years and has basically learned to speak and understand “chicken” and with two of her many chickens, she’s had a very special relationship.


Lipstick, a snow-white hen, so-called because of Sharon’s fuchsia lips prints on her head feathers. Lipstick is immortalized in several of Sharon’s paintings.


Ebony, as black as Lipstick was white, passed away recently.


There are no favourites at the moment, but that’s Ebony in these pics.


When Sharon’s not tending to her flora and fauna – beds bursting with veggies and greens, eggs that need to be collected, mother and baby chicks to attend to, and not forgetting to feed her dog Bailey and cat, Sylvester – she’s one of the most in demand Numerologists out there.


Her clients are scattered around the globe and many don’t make a move without consulting her first.


She’s been a radio personality (once had a show on KVNM, was a monthly guest on KTAOS) and is a frequent guest (and guest blogger) for Alexis Brooks.


Here’s a recent link – higherjourneys.com/are-earth-moving-events-signifying-the-breaking-point, and a wonderfully whimsical painter whose brush is currently occupied with the chickens she raises. You can see Sharon’s art at Magpiie, the gallery she shows with in Taos.


At the end of the day, when all is said and done, Sharon’s little urban farm is her anchor and her inspiration.

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She’s constantly reminded that with its responsibilities and the animals, this little oasis she’s created in the desert, is what truly sustains her,


Chickens and all, It’s home.

For more on Sharon Millstein please visit her website below and see her art at Magpie, also listed below this post.






Photographs of Sharon and her chickens and flowers at her home, taken by Chaya Vance, when she visited from Israel earlier this Summer.

Chaya once owned a fabulous and fabled B&B here in Taos, the Casa de Milagros. She is an accomplished artist and photographer, who now lives with her husband and son in Jerusalem, but still has a foot in Taos. I hope to have more of her fantastic shots on taoStyle whenever she passes through.




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