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Hello from Western MA

 
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Hello!

I've been lurking for a long time to learn as much as I can. My wife and I are closing on a house on 15 acres in just under 2 weeks, and I can't wait to get started.

It's mostly a northeast facing slope that is late stage forest, with lots of oak, beech, white birch, and some evergreen (pine? Fir?). There is tons of mountain laurel everywhere, but we don't plan to keep animals, so that wont be a problem. There are what might be blackberry bushes sporadically throughout the hillside. Might plant some native plants that are shade tolerant if they arent already there. Im thinking hazelnuts, eastern redbud, wintergreen, maybe a few others.

To the south of the house is the flattest spot, and the hill top, which I intend to use as a veggie garden once i clear out the overgrowth. (I think it was a flower garden at one time, but hasnt been touched in 5 or more years judging by the trees).
 
Rocket Scientist
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Location: latitude 47 N.W. montana zone 6A
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Hi AJ;    Welcome to Permies!
Congratulations on getting your land!  It is so cool to be the owner not a renter!
I added your post to the New England Forum as well. Maybe there are some other Permies in your neck of the woods who you can connect with!
Your place sounds very nice.   Keep us posted on your progress!  
Oh we like pictures... worth a thousand words as the saying goes!
 
author & gardener
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Location: Southeastern U.S. - Zone 7b
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Welcome Aj! Your land sounds like it has a lot of potential. Congratulations! Glad to have you join us on Permies. It's a great place to share ideas, brainstorm, and ask questions.
 
pollinator
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Location: Near Philadelphia, PA
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Welcome - looking foreward to hearing more about your homestead and projects!
 
Aj Richardson
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So closing took much longer than expected, but as of today, we own it! Im sitting here crying from happiness because the previous owner had set up a 10 year stewardship plan, and left all the documentation in a binder for me! It talks about the plants on the property,  how to manage them, the soil type, and tons of other useful info I thought I would need to spend time collecting!

So it looks like ive got red oak, hemlock, black birch, yellow birch, beech, red maple, a few white pine, maybe some sugar maple and chestnut! I had already identified the mountain laurel from my walk through, but theres witch hazel too!

Ill update with more info when i finish digging through this binder!
20210112_155649.jpg
Binder left on the table
Binder left on the table
 
Aj Richardson
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Ok, spring is upon us. I wandered the property looking at everything and trying to identify everything i could.

I found:

Non-Trees:
Snowdrops,
Wild grapes (fox grape hopefully),
Blackberry,
Something that is either rose or similar,
Bristly dewberry

Trees:
Striped maple,
Red maple,
Paper birch,
White birch
Black birch
Red oak,
Beech,
LOTS of sumac (staghorn I think, cut one down that was about 6" in diameter by my power lines!)
Hemlock and other pine variants

I am excited to discover more!
There are already 8 raised beds (4'x8') in the area I was thinking of for a garden. Theres tons of blackberry in them right now, but ill leave them alone this year and see what comes up. I plan to make 4 more beds next to them for my tomatoes and other plants.

There is also a MASSIVE woodchuck living under a shed. He's about 3 ft long and really fat. We've named him Sir Charles, but he may become dinner if he goes after my garden. I hope theres enough food for him elsewhere.
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Aj Richardson
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So last night i woke up to a scratching sound. Figured it was a mouse so i shined my phone light on it. Found this huge beetle. Some kind of carrion beetle im guessing. I captured it in an empty icecream container and let it go outside this morning.
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