When Jo met Rob on 'Farmer Wants A Wife' they instantly clicked. Now they have three kids.


Darcy Hodges has been able to watch her parents falling in love.

Eight-year-old Darcy is the daughter of Jo and Rob Hodges, who met on Farmer Wants A Wife in 2008.

“We did actually show Darcy the episode of Farmer when we had our first kiss, behind the hat,” Jo tells Mamamia. “We turned around and Darcy was crying, and we said, ‘What’s wrong?’ and she goes, ‘It’s just so good!’”

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True romantics across Australia would agree. Ratings were massive for Farmer’s second season, where sparks flew between Melbourne photographer Jo and Mount Gambier sheep and cattle farmer Rob.

Jo reveals that she had a panic attack just before meeting her future husband for the first time, on camera, at the speed dating.

“I’d never ever had a panic attack before,” she remembers. “Before our speed date I was around the corner, breathing into a brown paper bag, being looked after by the crew. I couldn’t breathe properly. And then as soon as I met him, he just made me feel so comfortable. He’s a little bit older – he’s 12 years older than I am – and it was instant. He just swept me off my feet. I know that sounds cliche but he really did.”

Before the year was out, Jo had moved to Rob’s farm in South Australia. The couple married, and had Darcy, Maggie, now five, and Roy, who’s almost three.


Jo says bringing up the kids on the farm is a “beautiful way of life”. The kids have their chores, including feeding orphaned lambs.


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“Maggie knows more than I do on the farm,” Jo says. “The other day I said, ‘Oh, look at the heifers!’ And she said, ‘Mum, they’re not heifers. They’ve had babies.’ Roy just loves it because he gets to ride in tractors and get filthy in puddles and mud. He’s just a free spirit.”

The couple aren’t planning on having any more kids.

“Roy was actually a twin,” Jo reveals. “We lost his twin at about nine or 10 weeks. Really, we could have had four, but it wasn’t meant to be. Mother Nature intervened and we’ve got three.


“That’s it now. They’re little crackers so we’re very lucky.”

Jo spent her first years on the farm working as a photographer, then wrote the autobiographical book Out Of The Blue. She got into the health and wellness movement “after a lot of mental health problems”, and became a holistic health coach. Just recently, she opened a holistic health space, The Nourish Nook, in Mount Gambier. Rob helps Jo with the financial side of her business, while she gives him a hand on the farm, when necessary.

“If Rob needs me to go out and open a gate and move some cattle into the next paddock or something, I’ll do that. It really makes me happy, going out and helping on the farm. I love it.”


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A perfect evening for a bit of TLC for Solar and a new passion for Darcy! (And, Rob loving every minute) ????????

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However, Jo says life “isn’t all beer and skittles”.

“Living on a farm there’s drought and all that sort of stuff, and it can be pretty stressful, but we tackle things together. Rob’s support is amazing. He’s my number one fan. And I respect his methods of farming and his ability to push through tough times. We’re both cheering each other on, so we’re very lucky.”

The couple still get recognised and asked for photos occasionally, especially when they’re on holidays. But Jo says most of the time, they almost forget they met on a TV show.

“We’re just an old married couple! We annoy each other every day pretty much but we adore each other at the same time.”

Of course, Rob and Jo are just one of Farmer’s many success stories. Among the others who’ve gone on to produce a new generation of farmers are Chris and Kim from season 1, Damian and Rachael from season 3, Brad and Stacie from season 4, Nathan and Amanda from season 5, Frank and Tenille from season 7, and Sam and Jodie from season 8.

Jo thinks she knows the secret of Farmer’s success.

“The girls and the farmers – and in the end it was female farmers as well – were on there to honestly and truly find love. It was people, some of them out in the middle of nowhere, who just wanted to meet someone. We were literally in jeans and t-shirts. There were no ball gowns going on. There was no professional makeup. It was really natural and wholesome. What you saw on Farmer was what you got.

“It was a good show. They should do another one!”