I am not experienced with goats, but I do keep our goats without fences; I just make sure that we are established as part of their herd first: bottle-feeding and even having a new adult sleep in the house. Our goats wouldn’t dream of wandering off. When we are in the house they sleep on the porch or browse very close by. When we go out, they walk everywhere we walk. If we leave a door open, they will also come into the house...
Bryant RedHawk wrote:I would think that it would hard to find such a place unless you are going back to carrying all your water daily, almost all water piping is done with PVC pipe these days.
Copper would be better but it has gone to the wayside because of the cost of the pipe, fittings and solder.
What about iron pipes? Vitrified clay? Or all the ways people have irrigated since before PVC?
I would love to find a community (probably more like eco-village, as I prefer a private land space within the larger space) that draws some boundaries around not having toxic things. Similar to Paul’s huspa.
I have searched IC.org. I have searched here. And so many communities seem to use a lot of plastic and toxic things like PVC.
Personally I have chosen to eliminate plastic and toxin-emitting machines, and I would love to live close to others who similarly chose to live without these materials.
I have a visions of a place with all earth houses (cob, wattle and daub, wofati, etc) and solutions to irrigation that don’t involve hoses and PVC. I think it’s possible. It’s been done in the past in human history.
There is a community in Wales that comes close. It’s all little cob houses, and they each have maybe 6 acres if I remember correctly. But they rarely if ever have openings.
Eco-village Gaia in Argentina also comes close, with cob and earth brick houses.
Does anyone have any leads? I’m open to anywhere in the world.
I am at the point of just trying to find my own land, but wanted to ask the permies community just in case anyone knows of other places that exist.
My goal/vision is to borrow/buy/lease land in NZ and build an all natural-build cottage (cob or cob-bale), and create a homestead where we have all our needs taken care of from the land. Same as lots of people on the permies forums, with probably the main difference that I intend to use no toxic materials or plastic or machines, so having running stream water and some rain is probably essential. I’m pretty serious about living without toxic things and I avoid cars and choose only natural fiber undyed clothing, cooking pots made of soapstone, etc.
I am interested in buying land with owner-financing if anyone has some land for sale—and am also seeking opportunities to secure land other than buying land, for example, to lease some acreage on someone’s land long-term and create a homestead within a larger piece of land. I am semi-interested in an intentional community but usually they are too community-focused for me with obligatory work and meetings and no private land space. My ideal would be to have my own 10+ hectares within a larger parcel of land where others with similar interests/values are doing things like planting fruit trees and walking their goats.
Regionally: I am focusing on the north of the South Island or the north island, as I would like to grow many of the fruits we have in Hawaii.
If anyone has land/leads/contacts/ideas in NZ, please let me know!
Also I’m open to other countries but I am fairly set on NZ at this point. I have been living in Hawaii for the last few years.
Which leads me to another thing that makes it hard to be plastic free: having a spouse that's not on the same page. One day my husband came home with three giant bags of cupcake toppers. He was so proud of how he'd gotten them for a dollar a bag. Why in the world would we need BAGS of horrid plastic toppers? I don't want plastic in our house. I don't want to STORE that stuff, let alone let my kids play with it. He also loves to buy hot wheels, and those are made usually half of plastic, with whatever weird paints they use. And, since so much is spent on trinkets, there isn't money for natural toys. I've been making wool felt fairies and dragons for the kids..but my kids love cars and truck much more, and I can't make those, nor do I have the time to make much of anything. It's hard.
This is really hard. And everyone I know who is conscious of toxins experiences this with spouses. When my husband and I disagree then our approach is to talk until we agree (which usually means a lot of educating on my part), or use the precautionary principle. That is to say, if he thinks it’s fine for our child to eat out of plastic, and I think it’s not okay to expose the child to plastic, and if we can’t get into alignment about it, then we choose the decision that we KNOW won’t harm the child. Not having plastic definitely won’t harm the child. Having plastic might harm the child. So we chose not having the plastic. Also, I feel it’s important to put the children’s well-being first and leave out any adult egos/issues/projections. So for example, if my husband wants to get our child a big wheel because he had one himself as a child, that’s projecting his childhood and expectations onto the child. A child can have a fulfilling and fun childhood without a certain toy. Also, having boundaries around plastic doesn’t always make other adults happy, and I know friends who have been yelled at by in-laws and called OCD for not wanting toxic things in the house. So I have had to be willing to not always please all the adults.
I should add that one benefit from being so strict about plastic/toxins is that my senses have totally changed because I’m not covered in toxic smelling things that I guess deadened my senses before. I can now be asleep on a windy beach and the small of a person 200 yards away will wake me up. More like the smell of cologne and dryer sheets on them. I think it’s helping me understand more what it is like to have senses like animals have.
What tips and tricks do you have for reducing the plastic your kids come in contact with?
I personally create a strict boundary for what I choose and what I allow to come in from others. My extended family all knows there will be nothing plastic or toxic around the child. If they send me something plastic or with chemicals anyway, it goes back to them or to donation. Actually I have asked for no gifts at all, except seeds or organic undyed clothes or money. Usually they send money because they all know how selective I am. My mom didn’t quite understand that no dyes means no dyes, but now she’s getting it because I sent the blue things back to her.
I have basically gotten rid of everything I had accumulated before having a child. I thought I had mostly non-plastic/non-toxic things but I re-examined and out went the sleeping bag, the dyed clothes, the synthetic clothes, and all my shoes, gone. I asked myself to think about every item in our household and ask myself “is having this thing worth exposing my child to toxins?” And the answer for me was usually no.
It’s made life and living a lot simpler. We have one pot, a soapstone pot. We love our pot so much it’s like another member of the family. We have hand-carved wooden cups and bowls. It’s really easy to do dishes when everything is wood and rock! We make some clothes and all our shoes and the last time we moved, we made all our bags from felt, hand sewn with wool yarn and a big blunt upholstery needle (safe and easy for children to sew with), which will be a bone needle soon. Toothbrushes are wooden with boar bristles. I made our mattress with my child from unprocessed wool batting and wool cloth.
There are still a few plastic things in the house: an iPhone and iPhone charger; my contacts, and something else I am forgetting. I keep these in an organic cotton pillowcase up in a closet.
What I have personally found is that when I draw a strict boundary I eventually find a solution or change what I thought mattered. Shoes were the biggest challenge for a while and now we make all wool felt shoes. I chose not to care about waterproof diapers.
It’s definitely a challenge but I personally find it an enjoyable one. I also really appreciate Etsy because if I don’t make it, I can find someone who will, and almost everyone is willing to customize what they make. I ask a lot of questions like what kind of thread is used and is the cloth washed with perfumed soap.
Electric currents do nothing for snake bite treatment except that they can cause wider spreading of the venom which is the opposite of what you want.
Redhawk, Is that based on your personal experience trying it out, or based on a review of the scientific literature? These scientists in the link I provided found otherwise (a bit of the abstract pasted below), even in vivo, and this was in 2011, in a peer-reviewed publication, which supports some other scientific research along with experiences in the field in Latin America where the people who suffered most from snake bites were the ones who refused the electric current being offered. It seems like the reports that say that it doesn’t work are basing that on the cases where bites were treated with way too high a voltage or amperage. But I haven’t really looked into the literature, and have only glanced at a few studies. That’s why I’m asking you, the expert!
“We previously reported that a short exposure of Crotalus atrox venom to direct electric current (dc) from a low-voltage generator, in solution, causes consistent and irreversible inactivation of venom phospholipase A(2) and metalloproteases. Here we report by in vivo assay on chicken embryos at stage 18 of development according to Hamburger and Hamilton that the hemorrhagic activity of C. atrox venom is lost after exposure to dc (from low voltage). Venom was exposed to dc ranging between 0 and 1 mA. dc values above 0.7 mA abolished hemorrhage”
I make shoes/boots from wool felt, but they don’t last long withot a sole, and they are a bit slippery without something grippy. Also many people on Etsy make felt boots like these ones, made only with raw organic wool, olive oil soap, and water. If you have never worn felt shoes, they are extremely comfortable. Also, you can sew on a leather sole for more durability.
Bryant RedHawk wrote:
(about 15 years ago I captured an Australian brown under a low deck in Sherwood Arkansas, it had a clutch of eggs which we also gathered up and they hatched two days later)
One of my friends that is a collector purchased the babies and their momma, we never found the daddy.
I've been handling snakes since the early 1960's, mostly collecting for antivenin programs.
What is your theory for how a breeding pair of Australian browns made it into the wild?
Bryant RedHawk wrote:I have not found any part of the USA that does not have some species of Rattle Snake. (Baja California to Maine)
I have captured Pacific Rattlers at the oceans edge at the Baja border all the way to Washington state, Western diamond backs in the High Sierra Nevada mountains all the way to the Grand Canyon and most of the other species of Rattle Snakes.
Most people don't find or see snakes unless they just happen upon them.
I had a friend that called me from his home in Palo Alto, he had heard a "rattler" in his garage, I got there and it was a 6 foot western diamond back, it went to the closest zoo.
Redhawk, so there are no micro-regions without rattlesnakes? Northern Vermont? Where I am staying now in far Northern California, I have seen 4 rattlesnakes in the last two weeks, and everyone here swears that 10 miles West there are none because of the lower elevation, and they say no one has seen one there for 40 years (and these are people who have animals and garden and spend time outside).
Do you come and gather snakes as a job? Where are you located? I haven’t found a professional snake person willing to travel to the north to gather them.
Bryant RedHawk wrote:
Yes there are coral snakes in California along the coast is where you will find them. I gathered four in Palos Verdes down on the beach in one month back in 1961, these snakes went to the LA zoo, the San Diego zoo and the museum of Natural History in San Francisco.
Redhawk, is it true that there are areas of California with no rattlesnakes? Recently I am being told that rattlesnakes don’t live below a certain elevation or along the coast in California. I’m searching for land and a few people have said their land has “no rattlesnakes ever.” Is that true that there are micro-zones where they don’t live? Why would that be?
Casie Becker wrote:The old rhyme is
red on black,
Good for Jack.
Red on yellow,
Kill a fellow.
I wouldn't mess with it. Thankfully, even if it is a coral snake, they are extremely nonagressive.
Is there a chance of finding a coral snake in a California? I just saw a snake with black red yellow and white stripes. I thought maybe it was a California mountain king snake, but I distinctly saw yellow and remembered Casie’s rhyme.
I would highly recommend guinea hens. Our chickens all nap in the shade when it’s 100-degrees and dry, and the chickens scratch all the newly planted beds. But the guinea hens hunt insects all day delicately and with precision. They don’t scratch the soil and they continue to hunt in the heat. Plus they will tell you if any new person or animal comes around.
This topic has been covered a little in previous threads about putting up a quick shelter to live in while building a cob house etc. I am also planning what to build quickly to live in while building cob, with the constraints that I don’t want anything toxic, so I am not going to live in an RV or anything like that. Also tents and yurt kits have too many chemicals for my taste.
So here’s my idea:
A tipi frame or dome frame. Covered with something.
Cover the frame with wool felt (there’s a company (called Sutherland I think) that makes totally raw wool felt with no chemicals, and you can buy 50-yard rolls of it).
But will the felt become waterlogged and sink and sag? How do traditional felt yurts do with rain?
Attach strawbales all around the frame and earth-lime plaster them for a quicky earth shelter.
But how would this hold up in the rain without a roof hanging over the bales and earth-lime plaster? I’ve seen strawbale geodesic domes but maybe they are onl used in hot dry environments?
Wooden tipi. Attach wood planks to tipi frame then maybe shingles on those.
Option 4 (variation of 1).
One layer of felt and one layer of cotton canvas waxed with beeswax-tallow-oil.
Option 5 (variation of 1).
One layer of felt and then attach brush/bark for a wigwam/wikiup exterior.
Also: will mice invade the felt? What about insects in the wikiup? Will I be creating brown recluse paradise?
We just got a female 10-week old puppy, half working border collie and half chocolate lab (we met the lab and he’s very sweet and mellow). The puppy is very very sweet and docile and rolls on her back to offer her belly the second she meets you, etc. She’s also highly attentive and walks around like a dog taught to heel, by my side always, and sitting when I stop. Also we have a child. Everything after bringing her home was feeling very easy for a new puppy in the house. But the first day she was chewing on the floorboard, and my son went up to her and she growled. I was surprised because she is so docile. Then a few days later I gave her a bone, and she went to chew it. After a little while my son went and sat next to her, not even touching her or the bone, and she started growling a serious growl and tensed up like she would bite him. So I went over and tried to take the bone away and she acted like she would bite me and almost snapped: so I placed my hand over her muzzle and lifted her body and took the bone without getting bitten. Then I offered the bone to her again and she didn’t seem to care. And I put it away. Then she went back to super docile and sweet. Then I read some dog behavior/training things online that said never take a bone away because that is where the fear comes from (that their food will be taken), and I read on a “positively” dog forum about all these ideas that said to never touch a dog’s food bowl or bone, and if you do that you are just asking to get bitten. And using this “positively” dog training approach, they all recommended to go up to the dog while eating and drop more yummier things into the food bowl so the dog will always associate you with getting more yummier food. And they suggested to only to take something away if you offer something yummier. So I tried all that. I dropped beef into the puppy’s bowl while she ate kibble. And my child fed her from his hand and gave her beef so she would associate him with more yummy food whenever he came close. Then I tried giving her a bone again and as soon as she had it all to herself she growled again when I came close, like a serious growl that she might bite. And then my son was giving seeds to our ducks and the puppy wanted to eat some so my son offered her some seeds from a bowl in his lap, and she ate some oats; and my son reached into the bowl to get some seeds for the ducks and the puppy growled at him.
So my questions are: how do you address this to stop this behavior in a puppy? Is she going to become an aggressive dog? Is this an innate aggression in her? What do you think about the “positively” training method which basically uses treats to get the dogs to do anything? Is she unsafe?
I'm not sure if this is the appropriate place to post this but I am searching for a cob or earth house to rent (while I search for my own land or community to build my own cob house on../)--with its own private acreage and preferably garden (space). I do not need appliances and am seeking a very simple non-toxic living environmen. I would be grateful for any leads.
If I had 200 acres and if I were the Duke of permaculture, I would be happy to give away 10-20 acres within the whole project, if it would help everyone and inspire the world.
The spirit of the idea was not about you losing money, but rather about incentivizing innovation in the zone where you think no one will live anyway (I personally would be happy pay to live there, however). And of course you wouldn't be "giving the land away" because it's always your land, and all improvements belong to you, and you can terminate at any time...And no one can pass it on to their children, etc.
Instead of "free", it could just be priced for less (and increase the price of the other zones so you make the same amount of money).
Anyway, I thought it was an interesting idea, for permaculture and the world!
It's challenging but possible. Constraints usually lead to amazing things, like sonnets and Italian food (what can you make with just flour, water and maybe a tomato?).
What about this idea? What if you were to give away deep roots parcels to anyone willing to start creating within a year, willing to start living there within 3 years, and willing to make a comfortable place to live (as per your challenge about a more luxuriant life...so it's not just about surviving in a pile of leaves).
You could fill huspa first, with 10-20 parcels. And see what happens. You would have nothing to lose and they would have nothing to lose, and we all would have a lot to gain.
Yes beeswax candles release toxins and so does fire so I get that. But why is husp only a mental exercise? The winter presents a challenge, but...I'm sure you have ideas for heating without fire, which is where I am feeling the biggest challenge is. Compost for heat? Zero plastic/paint/etc is not hard. No lights is also not hard. Eating only from the land without outside organic material even without fire seems pretty easy when animals are part of the scene. Raw milk and raw and dried meat and raw eggs? You could live off that alone and be totally healthy and happy. Fruit in summer and dried fruit in winter? No synthetic clothing is also not hard.
What is the biggest challenge for husp life? Many people in the world live in "husp"....
Someone could have one acre in husp and one acre outside husp and go get warm by the wood stove outside of husp and eat a pot of stew and take a hot bath and then go back home to husp? For a luxurious husp life...
Let's say that I want to become a deep roots person (and let's say I've listened to the podcast and I still want to come in), and I would like to rent-for-my-life 2-acres, in husp. How do I choose my spot if you haven't yet divided the four sections up? Do you have a general rough idea for the layout of the four sections? Where will husp be?
Will 2-acres be one larger circle? Or 2 small circles?
How many total deep roots plots will you have in each section? And what will the land around the plots be used for?
We would obviously need to access our plot through the land given the lack of roads; is any deep root person able to use any of the entire land (200 acres?) that is not a "private" plot?
I don't want synthetics or plastics or packages or paint, so husp is where I would want to be. But we would want internet access once in a while. Is there a space for any deep roots person to use internet that is step up? Or would I need to rent-for-life a deep roots acre that's my "office"? Basically, what else is included for a deep roots person?
If I wanted to own a car for occasional use, is there a space somewhere to keep it?
What if someone living within husp left the land and ate somewhere else....would they need to spend a day detoxing and pooping in in another zone before entering husp?
For building within husp, can allowed materials be brought in? Glass?
Why are no fires allowed within husp? Why not a beeswax candle? I didn't find this answer written anywhere. Just curious.
I have more questions but will start with these...
I am looking for one or two people who would be interested to live on my remote land in Alaska in exchange for putting in time to create an earth building or two and planting food forests and other projects like fencing. The land is raw and I don't live there and I won't be living or staying there for a while. But I would like to start creating there.
The land is on a beautiful bay on Kodiak island a mile up from the beach. It can only be reached by boat or float plane (you can get a ride from a fisherman from a nearby town). There are not many trees there now and the trees are young. There's a stream with salmon. This would be for someone who would be interested in going there with zero infrastructure and camping and living in a tent while building a cob cottage or wofati to live in. And then starting some other projects like planting trees and berries and more. And someone who appreciates living in a remote place with big bears! I would cover all the material costs. This could be a longish term arrangement or just seasonal if someone is interested in going for summers. There's a lodge nearby but otherwise none of the other neighboring landowners have built anything or live there. Hunters come through.
I'm happy to share more details to anyone who's interested!
Note this is just a photo of Kodiak, not the actual land. Just to give you an idea.
I want to find a place to move to immediately with my young son, that is preferably already a permaculture farm and homestead with a totally non-toxic (simple) house (I love cob). I would also be open to buying/leasing a piece of your property, if I could have my own totally private and delineated 3+ acres within your property.
I envision stream, hills/mountains, and maybe proximity to a larger body of water (lake/ocean). And of course food forests and gardens and animals or space for animals. And many many fruit trees.
I would also be open to raw land or permacultured land without a house (for me to build my own cob cottage on).
I am open to anywhere including NZ/Europe (we are UK citizens and US citizens), and possibly central/south-America (where I have lived).
I would love to live near other conscious families who don't drink or do drugs or watch TV or use poisons in their life...and who are conscious about language and programming.
Also I'm very very committed to living without anthropogenic toxins, so I'm not interested in properties with shipping containers or conventional paint or anything not from the earth...
The above is why I go back and forth between searching for raw land and searching for property that already has been lovingly co-created!
Just putting this out there in case someone has a magical property that would be perfect for us.
Cayo Seraphim wrote: that also has wise elders in residence
It might be difficult to find wise elders who are willing and able to build their own houses from onsite materials.
Almost anyone can build a cob house (with some extra hands for the roof and other heavy parts); the basic idea is just to suggest that houses are indigenous to the land, but of course help would be desired by many home-builders, and perhaps needed by some (elders). I was thinking that the community could hire some cob and other earth-building professionals to be located onsite to assist anyone in training or actual building. Once community members have experience, they could help others.
Yes but with more common areas and community projects (that are totally optional)--and a selection process for members. I don't think most HOAs have a meeting center, a school, a visitor center, a common grazing land, a common garden, common wilderness areas, do they?
I'm new here, and am seeking to create something that's distinct from the majority of eco-village/co-housing/intentional-community models that exist, and I believe it fulfills some needs and desires that many of us share (some of which I read in forums here. For example https://permies.com/t/40133/introvert-community).
My vision is to develop land into a type of eco-village/intentional community, with some key distinctions:
1) each family owns or holds in perpetuity their own domain of maybe 10 acres which is demarcated and is theirs alone forever. This is not able to be sold. The idea is that they can completely grow their own food on their own domain to provide for their family and future generations of their family, using permaculture principles, etc. And because it will be in their lineage forever, they will invest into the land a bit differently.
2) each family builds their own house themselves using materials from the land (primarily), which would mean they would be mostly earth-houses like cob and cob-bale houses (which are safe and easy for anyone to build).
3) there is a "natural" "wild" common ecosystem matrix around the domains to provide wildlife habitat, and other ecosystem services.
4) there is a large common area which would likely include a school (or homeschool co-op), community meeting area, visitor center, large communal body of water (lake or ocean/beach), large community pastureland and agricultural lands for any community food production, and more.
5) there are common principles such as no mechanization (vehicles can exist on the outskirts, to travel elsewhere), no plastic or poisonous substances of any kind (so groundwater and air is protected for everyone), no alcohol or recreational drugs, etc.
This would share some principles of "rewilding" where residents are fully meeting all their own needs on their own land, using earth-based "indigenous" skills rather than machines and appliances.
The intent would be to bring together individuals and families who want to create their own "conscious" homestead that is nestled into a larger community of people who are also committed to a nature-based life.
They key to this (which to me addresses many issues that arise for some people in intentional communities) is that residents can choose to have as much or as little contact with others as they want. There are zero rules or expectations about how much time is spent with other members of the community and no one is obligated to "work" on common projects. To me, and just to generalize a little: most co-housing and eco-village models do not provide enough land and the houses are too close together, and many intentional communities create many rules and expectations about social interactions and there is not a lot of sovereignty or privacy or independence. I personally would love to live in a place where meals are shared and work on communal projects is shared ONLY when I want to share in those activities. And I want to have my own land for my family where I can create my own gardens and projects that is completely my own territory. There are many intentional communities that seem so lovely and filled with amazing people, but I would personally feel restricted living there, almost enslaved by all the expectations and rules around doing so much together.
I have a child, and I have raised him in close connection to nature. My interest is in creating a place where there are many other families and children, that a fulfilling place for children to be--and that also has wise elders in residence and other individuals who are modeling healthy skills and conscious awareness and provide healthy adult models for all the children around.
If a group wanted to go in on the land, maybe at $30,000 each, with 50 members, that could buy say 1,000 acres for around $1M, and use $500,000 for the legal structure and common areas. 10 acres per person would leave 500 acres of common area. I have seen some amazing pieces of land that size in Montana, Colorado, Idaho, maybe California. Italy and Portugal are possible also.
Anyway, these are just my initial rough ideas. Maybe this does already exist and if so, please tell me where, so I can move there! I know there are communities like this in Russia because of the Anastasia ringing cedars books. But I haven't found this manifested in a complete way elsewhere. Maybe vedrica? And I saw this other thread with an interest in this idea