— The Openherd Team

Magical Alpacas and Sustainable Farming

The Perfect Alpaca is Waiting For YOU at Sierra Rose!

Have you dreamed about having a sustainable small farm? One where you and your family could live in harmony with nature, your kids could learn about science in the real world instead of just the classroom, and you could supplement your income for your family from what you produce?

We certainly had that dream. With our greatest life adventure (through hard work, planning and more than a little luck) we have a working Alpaca ranch.

Our alpaca’s grow the most beautiful fleece, which we shear off them once a year. We turn that fleece into beautiful products, such as yarn, hats, gloves, socks, rugs, art and more. The properties of alpaca fiber are such that it feels luxurious on the skin. Most people do not have sensitivities to alpaca fiber either, having a different structure to it than sheep wool, goats, etc. Alpaca has a natural luster to it, and simply feels marvelous, warm, yet lightweight.

In addition to their fabulous fiber – for which they really are raised - our alpacas create the most life-giving, rich manure which composts into an amazing soil amendment. We use this to feed our pastures, our flowers and landscaping, and our organic vegetable gardens.

But, there’s more to sustainable farming than just fiber and fertilizer. Our goal was to create a ‘circle of sustainability’ with our ranch. The Alpacas grow a very usable fiber, which we wear, use (and sell). Shearing takes place once per year, after which time the fleece regrows. The land feeds the Alpacas, the Alpacas feed the plants, and we eat the veggies and enjoy the flowers that are enhanced with their “alpaca gold”. Howard enjoys growing a dyers garden so he can dye alpaca fiber/yarn into beautiful, natural plant based colors. A very symbiotic relationship, indeed.

We love the extraordinary bond between humans and the animals who share our lives - it is one that gives joy and purpose in amounts far greater than the effort we expend.

Not only are we responsible alpaca owners, we love to help others who want to be responsible alpaca owners achieve that. They are such endearing livestock, that many people just fall in love with them as we did. If that is your dream, we can help. But alpacas must go as part of a herd. Generally speaking, you must plan on having at least five alpacas to make up a real herd. This is for the well-being of the alpacas.
Visits are made by appointment only. Private visits usually run about 1 hour, cost $20 for up to 4-5 people. This is refunded to you if you purchase alpacas from us, and at time of purchase.

We sell our friendly alpacas, our fleece and fleece products from them, and other U.S.A. made alpaca products.