Lords and peasants worked together to support one another. The wealth of the lords came by the labors of the peasants who worked their lands. In return, the lords protected the peasants, offered them shelter, and insured that they were fed.
The lands of a lord were referred to as a manor. A manor might be small and only include a few hundred acres, or it might me huge, encompassing several hundred thousand acres.
A manor consisted of the lord's estate or castle, farmlands, forests for hunting, and a village where the peasants lived. Because war was rampant, trade was nearly impossible. This meant that a manor had to be self-sufficient. They had to produce everything they needed to survive within their own manor.
The lord directed these efforts and protected his peasants. In exchange, the peasants worked on road repairs, built bridges, farmed the lord's lands, and built buildings. They also paid tribute to the lord in the form of grain, food, clothing, and other goods.