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First PAID permie gig for a commercial property

Posts: 20
Location: New Orleans
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[img]I somehow talked a few local business owners into letting me work on their landscaping.  I lucked out, the first person I spoke with is half german and had somehow actually HEARD of hugelkultur before. (amazing)
Here we are months later and I billed out my services at $20 per hour and recieved it.  I remember Paul saying on PDC, "Has anyone actually made money doing permaculture?" and now I can answer YES :)

I am not yet a licensed horticulturist But I have enough confidence in my plant knowledge and skills.  Also joined a business coaching group online which has helped me push forth emotionally through my fear of failure.

The first task given to me was to "Plant up" ten rectangular planter boxes *In such a way as to be able to thrive without recieving much care.*  THe other challenge was to plant in such a way that the moist soil would not rot away the body of the planter.  I believe wood building to be generally folly but, regardless,  I agreed to try BURIED WOOD could be the way, used such in the design, and it is working!!!

Planters were constructed of reclaimed wood, placed on casters to be able to be moved (in theory)

If you are still reading maybe you are curious of the designs.  Happy to share.  

First I Drilled a few holes about 12 to 20 inches apart, dispersed along bottom.  Lined each planter space with thick black plastic, 1 or 2 layers.  I stuck some baffles downthrough the holes and plastic to (hopefullY?)  help the water drain when needed.  Broken terracotta pieces were placed over each opening to stop dirt falling through or clogging.

Next, in went a few layers of scrap wood, picked up for the free around town.  I had to cut down the large planks, to fit nicely in and as snugly as I could.    Of course we all know what the wood is for!

The rest was pretty standard, selecting and installing of the plants and potting mix.  (used a local supplier for mix- Laughing Buddha nursery here in New Orleans. )

Next up for this same commercial property, is a planned banana patch on the bare corner shown.  AND I have baby bananas ready to get dug up. in my backyard hugel beds at home.  I can bill these plants as live nursery stock and start to take a profit off the garden!  (Obtaining a yield)

Also nearing planting time on a NEW backyard hugel, at a rental house I manage here in town.  Have not yet told landlady what I am up to!  Hope it goes over ok... Considering purchasing some brick blocks to get a more 'fancy' look.  But they ares o expensive and heavy...

Anyway .
I am a happy camper.Just wanted to share and say YES, permaculture is marketable!

Just have to talk about the PROBLEMS we can solve for the customer.  (In this case rain absorption/flooding and self-sustainingness. Along with the beautiful enhancement of the space)
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Posts: 197
Location: Illinois USA - USDA Zone 5b
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Congrats! That’s great! I hope your first customers are delighted with the results and recommend you to others. 💚
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