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Aging in place on the homestead  RSS feed

 
steward
Posts: 1191
Location: Torrey, UT; 6,840'/2085m; 7.5" precip; 125 frost-free days
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Anyone planning/thinking/dealing with aging/loss of mobility issues on the homestead?
The work is hard enough, what can been done upfront to minimimize the obstacles people face in staying on the farm as they reach their senior years? And maybe make farming nicer in the years or decades leading up to the need?
 
Posts: 78
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For me, that's one of the many appealing things about permaculture, less labor-intensive. And to stay as healthy as possible, mind and body. I plan to die on this dirt and hope that it's at a ripe old age. I promise you that I would rather die here, even if from a fall or other old-person kind of accident, than be put away in one of those cemeteries-with-the-lights-on, aka 'assisted living facility' or 'nursing home'. That would be worse than death for me, away from my gardens and animals and wilderness.

I had a dear friend who, when her health failed to the point where her family insisted she be institutionalized "for her own good", told the doctors to stick it where the sun don't shine and ended things on her own terms. She knew she was terminal and wasn't about go out plugged in like a damned lamp. She's my hero (even though she left me her Pomeranian ).
 
pollinator
Posts: 10114
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
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I agree with Jorja, one of the reasons I'm practicing permaculture is in the hope that I will be able to continue to do it into old age. Farming in the typical sense is very difficult for older people to do without lots of power equipment. With a tractor and implements, an old person might continue to farm, as one of our neighbors did into his mid 80s. But old-fashioned "hoe farming" is too hard for the average older person (I think it's too hard for anyone). Permaculture allows the hard work to be done early in the development of the system and after that natural processes take over for most of the work except harvesting.
 
Posts: 27
Location: Wakefield, Quebec, zone 3b/4a CAN
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We're currently planning on moving to new land, and despite being only 28 I am hoping and working towards spending my days at a ripe old age, living with the land.

With that in mind, all of my thoughts are towards ease and redundancy. Setting up systems now that will save time and energy later. The planning, research, and labor are intense right now, but it'll pay off. I hope.
 
gardener
Posts: 1948
Location: PNW Oregon
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The Amish use their children for this purpose. Around age 45 (love it) they give the homestead, main house, barn and fields to a married child, and they move into a smaller home on the back-40. They have a small garden, sew, make furniture and advise the 'new owners'. They move into a overseer position and still share in the farm bounty until they pass.

Family, in days gone now, has been people's retirement plan. It was the first intentional community - IC. Now days you could consider rotating interns, with an eye toward finding one or two you trust and then make a deal like free rent for some work, company and support in emergencies.
 
pollinator
Posts: 4437
Location: North Central Michigan
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funny how just when I was returning from my walk this morning I was thinking of putting some new beds in CLOSER to the house, as I'm 61 and things are getting a bit more difficult to do so far from the house. I've done permaculture for 41 years on this property, but I'm thinking of letting the farther away stuff go more food foresty wild, and setting up an area in the permie zone 1 by the house that is easier for my annual veggies.

I would like to plan a couple NEW beds, hugel / raised beds, within 30 to 40 feet of the house so that I have less distance to go to deal with it.

I have been putting in more and more permanent crops every single year..fruit trees and shrubs, nuts, perennial plants, etc.

I have also been taking over more and more of the work on the property as my husband gets less and less able..right now he can do NOTHING..other than bathe himself..as he not only is mentally and physically disabled but broke his leg 2 weeks ago today and won't obey dr orders.

so other than my son's help occasionally I do it all, including cut and haul the firewood, feed the fire, maintain the lawn and buildinigs, etc..so the more easy I can make things around here the better.
 
Posts: 56
Location: SW Virginia Mountains, USA
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This topic is near and dear to my heart.

I'm a single female living alone on 19 steep mountain acres, will be 72 this year, and have really noticed increased limitations in the last 3-4 years. I'm slowly getting rid of everything high maintenance in the yard and moving into permaculture/food forest areas. I may not ever see some of the trees produce fruit/nuts but I plant anyway.

I envy those who have younger family members or neighbors available to help. As poor as my county is, no one will work for money... not that I have much anyway with just my social security income. Some of the work is hard, but if I stop doing it at all, I'll go downhill fast. I watched my mother do that (assisted living then nursing home) and I don't intend to follow in her footsteps.
 
Tyler Ludens
pollinator
Posts: 10114
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
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I wish we were neighbors, darius.

I think we older folks are going to have to band together for mutual support. It would be great to have much younger people along too...
 
Gary Stuart
Posts: 27
Location: Wakefield, Quebec, zone 3b/4a CAN
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If the land deal we're pursuing doesn't go through, our next option is to look for someone who owns land, shares our vision, and would appreciate having us around, exchanging work for rent, etc.

Easier said than found up here in the Great White North, however.
 
Brenda Groth
pollinator
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Location: North Central Michigan
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I am the same as you, not knowing if I'll ever see the fruit from all the trees I'm planting here either..each year i put in more fruit and nut trees and grapevines, etc..My mom is 92 so I hope I live as long as she ..but my health hasn't been quite as good as hers as she is skinney minney and I'm not.

I do also walk every day when weather permits and exercise besides keeping up with the property work, but I do also realize that things closer so they are easier to take care of doesn't mean I won't still work on the things farther away, just not have them being so demanding to me.

I tend to be an "over" doer anyway, not sure how much longer that will last but so far it has kept me busy.
 
Jami McBride
gardener
Posts: 1948
Location: PNW Oregon
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I am 52 and have been thinking about this for a while. I want to build cob cabins to rent out or exchange rent for labor with like minded folks. Either way, I like the idea of more physically able people on the land than just myself.

As for the steep and rough part of the land I'm trying to buy.... I'm going to let Kiko Goats have it
 
steward
Posts: 8019
Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
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There are many things that we can do, with an eye towards the future.

The more organic matter you can work into your soil now, the greater the soil tilth. Great tilth needs very little labor to maintain.

Why carry buckets of water to the hen house. A 16' x 10' hen house's roof will collect 100 gallons of water for each 1" of rain it gets.

On steeper slopes, make your paths 'cut-backs' (zig-zag) up the hill. And wide enough for a wheel barrow.
Also, consider a 2 wheeled wheel barrow...much easier to control as you loose mobility. Or a 'little red wagon'.
You don't need to be confined to a wheelchair to utilize a ramp.
A ramp allows you to take a wagon straight from the garden (or car) to the kitchen.

When cutting firewood, take the stuff farthest from the house now, and save the close up stuff for later years.

Many hand tools have short handled versions. Saves a lot of stooping over, or working on yous knees.
If you can save your knees now, you won't regret it in later years!

A good layer of gravel along your fence line will save many hours of hoeing or weed-whacking.

If you have younger neighbors, their FFA and 4H children can be a great source of help.



 
Posts: 6545
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
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We both turn sixty two this fall and have been looking at our forty acres with downsizing in mind...we dont want to move, but we are trying to let go of some of our homesteader mentality. If we stay in this house we need to at least put on a new roof so we are thinking of selling a corner (six to eight acres) to give us some money to work with and look at a little more comfort. We are being so picky about who we would sell to though it may never happen. We've already agreed to just maintain what we've done and no new projects. of course this site is providing so much inspiration it is hard to stop planning.....We had already got an on demand water heater (no more heating on the stove and hauling a bucket), I went to an indoor sawdust bucket and pee bucket years ago, Our children and their families think how we are living is too hard but we always saw it as the best possible freedom. I love growing food and knowing that if we hear a vehicle they are coming to see us (or lost). and being able to play music way loud and and being able to see the stars and wandering the woods and all of the wonderful things that go with this lifestyle.
 
Posts: 50
Location: Dallas TX
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Judith Browning wrote:We both turn sixty two this fall and have been looking at our forty acres with downsizing in mind...we dont want to move, but we are trying to let go of some of our homesteader mentality. If we stay in this house we need to at least put on a new roof so we are thinking of selling a corner (six to eight acres) to give us some money to work with and look at a little more comfort. We are being so picky about who we would sell to though it may never happen.



How picky? And what would the per acre price be for 6 acres? I really want "to able to play music way loud and and be able to see the stars and wander the woods and all of the wonderful things that go with this lifestyle." But I have limited savings for buying land so that will be the first limitation on my buying any property. Second limitation is that I am 60 and I don't know enough to homestead on my own and I think it would be naive if not foolish to think I can buy property and learn all this stuff, build a wofati and live happily ever after. So I'm interested in hearing from people who have found a way to start up a homestead or join a community with limited funds.
 
Judith Browning
Posts: 6545
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
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Hi, Susan....Pretty picky, I guess, in that we hope for a young couple/family already obsessively into an organic/permaculture philosophy and just needing the land to make it happen. I did kind of skip the downsides to life in the Ozarks like ticks, snakes, heat, too much rain, tornados, not enough rain ,forest fires, bad roads, no money.....But on the other hand you should try to live your ideal at any age.
Good luck.
 
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Ann
Thanks for starting this thread. It is very timely.
Being in my 50's and wanting to be back on land and realistically knowing I can not do it alone,leaves me wondering if it will happen.
Checking out intentional communities ( makes me wish I lived in the US,as a few resonate with me there)but not finding a fit ,yet,here in Canada.
I envision a place of several generations supporting each other with everyone's strengths and contributions put to use. A place of accepting,giving and interdependence.
Is this just a dream?
I truly believe it is possible whether one has limited finances or limited physical capacity.
Hmmm...all of your comments have got me thinking.
All the best.
Kate
 
Susan Noyes
Posts: 50
Location: Dallas TX
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Kate Nudd wrote:
Being in my 50's and wanting to be back on land and realistically knowing I can not do it alone,leaves me wondering if it will happen.
Checking out intentional communities ( makes me wish I lived in the US,as a few resonate with me there)but not finding a fit ,yet,here in Canada.
I envision a place of several generations supporting each other with everyone's strengths and contributions put to use. A place of accepting,giving and interdependence.
Is this just a dream?
I truly believe it is possible whether one has limited finances or limited physical capacity.
Hmmm...all of your comments have got me thinking.
All the best.
Kate



I decided this morning that I'm going to make it happen; I've decided to register for the next PDC I can find and follow up with a teachers training PDC. So I will start looking into the PDC's offered in the southern US. Then if I have any $'s left I'm going to buy an acre or two and get my food forest going; if I run out of money I'll start applying for interships at all the permaculture places I can find. One way or another, I'm ready to get this permaculture show on the road!
 
Tyler Ludens
pollinator
Posts: 10114
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
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Susan, there are a bunch of intentional communities in Texas, if you aren't looking to leave the state: http://www.ic.org/

Most probably aren't permacultural, but some are ecovillages, which might be compatible with your goals.

If you want to buy land of your own, you might want to try to find some near a Transition Town, which may be more compatible with your ideas than just any old place. http://transitionus.org/

 
Brenda Groth
pollinator
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Location: North Central Michigan
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some really great ideas..esp of having a ramp even if you dont NEED it..as I should have done that by now and haven't.

my son is talking about running our laundry water out into a new hugelbed for me just east of our house..maybe building it this fall..I'm looking forward to giving it a try...seeing as how even in a drought I do wash.

also this would cut off some more of our lawn area so less mowing...but right now I have a zero turn mower I learned how to use a couple of years ago that has saved me a tremendous amount of time and work.

also trying to think INSIDE the house less work as well..we have a brand new gassifier wood stove that should save us not only $ and wood but also time as it requires less stoking and smaller wood pieces.

it also will heat our water this year for the first time which will nearly eliminate any need for propane (only our gas cooking stove) so we probably can go to a smaller propane tank this year (except we'll need propane in summer).

and this next year we should get all of our fruit from our own on property plants for the first time..looking forward to that.
 
Judith Browning
Posts: 6545
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
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Brenda, What is a zero turn mower? We have a gas powered push mower and are wanting to mow less and less.
and I just realized if we had a ramp up to the front door I could run the wheelbarrow right up to the woodstove to pile the wood instead of carrying arm loads up the steps, etc...I think this is going to be a really helpful topic.
 
Tyler Ludens
pollinator
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Because our house is elevated on piers and rather high at the front, I calculated I would need to build a ramp to our front porch about 30 feet long to accommodate design requirements for use by a wheelchair. But it is still on my long list of projects....If I don't do the ramp I at least want to rebuild our front steps to have two short runs of steps up to an intermediate landing to replace the long steep run of steps down which we may plummet and break a hip later on...
 
steward
Posts: 2723
Location: Maine (zone 5)
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I was just talking about this with my wife. We're just 30 years old with two kids and only just starting out with our property. I take a lot of inspiration from the older folks here on the site and hope that one day I'll have the time to give back to you folks that have shown us the way to true independence. Young people are willing and able to help but often times we're broke as a joke. Pass on your knowledge and you'll be rewarded with the labor of those more able to do so.

I intend to have my final resting place be a small dusting of ashes in a compost pile. I want to make my final wish a contribution of nutrients to that land which provided me with a life worth living. I hope to pass on that wish to my children who will keep the land alive and thriving for their children and so on and so on. Maybe it's a lofty goal but it's a goal worth giving my life. And I WILL.
 
darius Van d'Rhys
Posts: 56
Location: SW Virginia Mountains, USA
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Well said, Craig. I'd love to find someone like you to share my land, and perhaps learn a few things from me.
 
pollinator
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Location: zone 7
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I agree with Craig, most younger folks like us don't have the money to do these large scale projects in an instant or with many inputs. I have found it to be a great benefit to both when the elder shares knowledge and the youth returns some help. What would take an elder all day I can do in five minutes. In some cases I've also gotten old rare goodies along with my help, like a old family heirloom variety.

As far as age and the land the two things I see that are needed but fading fast are family owned farms, like my great great great grandpa started this farm type of stuff, but started a new with you. Your children help in the chores around the place and eventually when they take over they know the routine better than anyone. The other is self running farm systems. By the time I'm old I want everything to be harvesting and finding new ways to use the plethora of materials, foods, herbs and such that comes out of the forest.
 
Craig Dobbson
steward
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Location: Maine (zone 5)
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I know this is a bit off topic, but I'm trying to find a way to get my place up and running quickly so that I can do more to help others get started. It's really frustrating to know that I am on the right track but that it may take the rest of my life to do it because the money just isn't there to get it done. I would love to just have all the pro's (Lawton, Holzer, Wheaton etc) to come in and get my tiny 7 acres going so that I could go out in the world with a wealth of knowledge and experience and help get other places going. I'd love to do this while I still have the energy and drive to do so. I don't want to be 60 years old before I'm satisfied and confident with my own property enough to go out in the world and get other places going. I get the feeling that I'm running out of time to make a real difference in the world with permaculture. The Climate and all that jazz isn't going to wait a few more generations for people to catch up. Permaculture is a "NOW" solution to a "NOW" problem. But right now, those able to do the work don't have the cash to get it done, while those with the cash don't have the energy or the drive. I'm generalizing and of course I mean no offense.

I've been thinking a lot about what we can do as a community to join forces and get these things done NOW. How do we bring the older folks with the cash together with the kids with the energy and get the Pro's with the knowledge in to get it done NOW.

In a perfect world a group of wealthy retirees would cough up the cash to pay the Pro's a reasonable fee to assess and design a landscape that the young folks would work to make a reality. I get the feeling that all parties involved would get something out of it. The older folks have a healthy place to live out the rest of their days in peace and security, the Pro's get a chance to implement their knowledge on a large scale and young folks have the opportunity to dive in head first and do some serious work that makes a real difference. In time you end up with more young Pro's with energy and funding and the cycle grows exponentially. I imagine Permaculture by conflagration. A lot of little fires combine to become one huge fire that consumes the landscape in a permaculture inferno. I realize it's an idealistic dream but hey... A guy can always dream, right?

Sorry for the rant. I just get emotional about this stuff sometimes. My kids are on track to inherit a pretty shitty world and I just don't want that. And I'm on track to die poor in a low quality nursing home. This is unacceptable. This has to stop! Now
 
Judith Browning
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Craig.......Well, I don't think you'll find sixty year olds with extra cash on this thread but I really admire your enthusiasm. Maybe permaculture is the answer , maybe not. A big difference would have been made if Jimmy Carter's environmental regulations had stayed in place and his solar panels hadn't been laughed off of the roof of the White House....but thats old news.
One of the things I love about this site is the steady flow of information. In the late sixties and early seventies we all had a "gonna go live on the land" mind set but other than gatherings a few times a year we weren't in direct communication for months at a time. We sometimes found out years later we were making the same mistakes. You have this flow of information that seems to be teaching folks on its own. I envy that.
Right now when so many of us are in a drought you might want to use another analogy besides fire, maybe snowball...
and you won't know till you get there but most of us don't think of ourselves as old at sixty.....even at seventy.
 
Craig Dobbson
steward
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Judith Browning wrote:Craig.......Well, I don't think you'll find sixty year olds with extra cash on this thread but I really admire your enthusiasm. Maybe permaculture is the answer , maybe not. A big difference would have been made if Jimmy Carter's environmental regulations had stayed in place and his solar panels hadn't been laughed off of the roof of the White House....but thats old news.
One of the things I love about this site is the steady flow of information. In the late sixties and early seventies we all had a "gonna go live on the land" mind set but other than gatherings a few times a year we weren't in direct communication for months at a time. We sometimes found out years later we were making the same mistakes. You have this flow of information that seems to be teaching folks on its own. I envy that.
Right now when so many of us are in a drought you might want to use another analogy besides fire, maybe snowball...
and you won't know till you get there but most of us don't think of ourselves as old at sixty.....even at seventy.



Speaking as a young person who's done a lot of work in a number of fields of study, I can only say that there doesn't seem to be a clear way out of this hole for my generation. Economically speaking it seems that there won't be any sort of social security waiting for me as I age. I'll have to do it all myself and forget about that money that I pay to Uncle Sam. I know that 60 isn't that old I just threw that out there as a starting point. Back when SS was set up, folks weren't expected to live into their 80's or even 100's. I know that the quality of life for a lot of the "elderly" isn't all that great even with that SS check so If my generation is expected to live 100 or even 120, we need to really consider what life might be like then without that social security. The way I figure it, having a piece of land that pretty much takes care of itself with little input would be a nice place to start. Having neighbors with the same thing would make all the difference in attaining some real security for most people. Perhaps the older Permies aren't the best source of funding but at least they understand the dilemma to some degree and may know people who might be able to help us younger folks out. Nursing homes cost about 100,000 dollars a year for even the most basic crappy care. And nobody wants that. So how can we take that future Money and make it do some real good for everyone now? I clearly don't have all the answers but I know there are a lot of solutions in permaculture and a lot of resources here as well. Let's not make the mistakes that were made during Carter's time. We can do better and we have to start somewhere. Might as well start now. Might as well start here.
 
Tyler Ludens
pollinator
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The main problem seems to be people are hesitant to pool their resources or are in a place where it isn't easy to do. For instance most people want their own personally owned piece of land but a land owner might be unable (deed restrictions) or unwilling to subdivide land. It's a matter of trust, most of us haven't been raised up to work in a trust-based sharing system. People want to put a $ value on things.

I very much would like help on our place but we can't subdivide it and we don't have enough spare $ to hire people to work at any kind of decent wage. It's hard to figure a way to get help in this situation which would offer enough value to the person helping. I'm working with my sister to try to design an educational facility here which could trade helping labor for learning, if we can manage to pay to get some knowledgeable instructors. I don't have any teaching credentials nor am I a "people person" enough to teach, myself.
 
Judith Browning
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in response to Craig...just to clarify...Jimmy Carter's admin. put in place environmental regulations and solar panels on the roof...Ronald Reagan's admin. took it all away. And no admin. has really addressed climate change since. I would love to think that permaculture practices could reverse the progression of global warming and feed the world and I am convenced it can make a huge difference...Maybe you can teach right at your homestead...the world needs more like you.

sorry, Ann , I am really off topic.
 
Gary Stuart
Posts: 27
Location: Wakefield, Quebec, zone 3b/4a CAN
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Keeping the off-topic theme going...

Like I said earlier, if the land deal we're working on right now goes ahead then the plan is to prepare a homestead that can be passed down through the generations. That's the goal, anyway. And we would be delighted if we found the right people to build their own house on the land to work with us. But I haven't got the foggiest clue as to how to make an arrangement like that that offers security to all parties.

If not, then we'll be looking to trade our eagerness to work and knowledge for rental of a small house on someone else's land. Or camp while we build our own house. But... that was the deal we had with the owner of the property we live in right now, and when he passed away recently, it left us in that well known creek pretty much paddle-less. The lack of security in such a situation is hard to accept, especially when there are kids (and livestock!) involved.

All that to say... I just don't know. But I bloody well hope this deal goes our way!!!
 
Tyler Ludens
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Gary, I recommend the book "Creating a Life Together" by Diana Leafe Christian, which is about what makes a successful intentional community and how to avoid failure. http://dianaleafechristian.org/creating.html

I regret giving all my copies away!

 
Craig Dobbson
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Judith Browning wrote:in response to Craig...just to clarify...Jimmy Carter's admin. put in place environmental regulations and solar panels on the roof...Ronald Reagan's admin. took it all away. And no admin. has really addressed climate change since. I would love to think that permaculture practices could reverse the progression of global warming and feed the world and I am convenced it can make a huge difference...Maybe you can teach right at your homestead...the world needs more like you.

sorry, Ann , I am really off topic.



Yeah, I know how all that went down with Carter and the following admin. I guess what I was getting at is that the "public" is so fickle about politics and politicians that with the time scales involved we don't allow anything to get accomplished anymore. Going the political route seems to me to be a real waste of time when were already running out of time as it is. We bounce back and forth between political parties to such extremes nowadays that it seems that one administrations' accomplishments are immediate cannon fodder for the next administration. At this rate we'll be arguing about climate change while the last forests are burning and the last fish are going belly up.

I feel that in order to make a real difference in enough time to really mitigate these climate issues, people need to start finding new ways to get things done.
If I want to retire and die on this land I could do so at my current rate of accomplishment. However, I'll most likely not have enough time or money left to make much of a difference outside of my own 7 acres. I really wish that wasn't the case. Permacuture and the general mindset that comes with the "the problem is the solution" mentality excites me to a degree that I've not been before. I have some land. I have some time. I have some energy... but I feel like I could do a lot more if I had a solid financial footing. The success that that could bring to me could translate into success for so many other people that I feel I could make a lot more of a difference.

In the "old days" families were multi-generational and many lived in one house together. Grandma would watch the kids while mom and dad worked and grandpa passed on knowledge and fixed up the broken gadgets to save some money. Housework was done, kids were fed well and there was a little leftover to make the next generations lives a little better off than the last. Now it seems that each generation is out for themselves to such a degree that were throwing away our grandparents because they are a burden to us. It's sad and I don't want that for me or my kids.

If I were to inherit a million dollars I would hire the Permaculture Pros to get this place set up right (top to bottom) so that I could spend the rest of my life spreading the word and teaching others so that fewer people had to run the risk of dying alone in misery. Getting the next generation up to speed through hands-on teaching would be a great start. I could do it IF I had the time. I would have the time IF I had my place in order as a working example. I could have a working example IF I had the funds to do it all at once instead of doing it piecemeal as the money trickles in.

IF IF IF ... I know. I don't really care about having any money when I die. I just want to know that I made things much better for as many people as possible before I buck off.




 
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Location: NW Oregon (Zone 8)
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We are in our 40's and working to get out of debt so we can afford to get a good parcel of land for house, farm, pasture et al. While its not in the "NOW" time frame we would like everything to be, getting out of debt will ensure a possible easier transition of our land to our kids. We are working on the yards, getting knowledge built up so when we do have land we will know better what we are doing

Recently my youngest professed a desire to learn how to grow food sustainability. Nice to hear my readings and our watching of documentaries are getting heard by the kids. Kid the older went to a Rachel Carson Middle school and is already well versed in getting the land in a happier zone (I have him tackling the blackberries in our yard)

 
Tyler Ludens
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Craig, please consider the "work in progress" model so many of the permaculture homesteads embody. Zaytuna Farm was not a one shot deal completed all in one go by the experts. Yes, it had an expert initial design, but it is still a work in progress. Milkwood Farm is still pretty rudimentary and has been teaching for years. PRI Jordan "Greening the Desert 2" is still in its infancy. In fact, I don't know of any permaculture demonstration sites which are "finished" or which waited very long into the process before teaching began. Many started with very little in the way of money or even resources (some are like, in the desert, man )

http://permaculture.org.au/2012/06/01/zaytuna-farm-video-tour-apr-may-2012-ten-years-of-revolutionary-design/

http://milkwood.net/about/

http://permaculture.org.au/2011/08/30/jordan-valley-permaculture-project-august-2011-photo-update

http://www.quailsprings.org/

http://www.happyearth.com.au/
 
Craig Dobbson
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Tyler Ludens wrote:Craig, please consider the "work in progress" model so many of the permaculture homesteads embody. Zaytuna Farm was not a one shot deal completed all in one go by the experts. Yes, it had an expert initial design, but it is still a work in progress. Milkwood Farm is still pretty rudimentary and has been teaching for years. PRI Jordan "Greening the Desert 2" is still in its infancy. In fact, I don't know of any permaculture demonstration sites which are "finished" or which waited very long into the process before teaching began. Many started with very little in the way of money or even resources (some are like, in the desert, man )

http://permaculture.org.au/2012/06/01/zaytuna-farm-video-tour-apr-may-2012-ten-years-of-revolutionary-design/

http://milkwood.net/about/

http://permaculture.org.au/2011/08/30/jordan-valley-permaculture-project-august-2011-photo-update

http://www.quailsprings.org/

http://www.happyearth.com.au/




I hear ya. I know things take time for sure. I sometimes get the feeling that I'm fighting the rising tide with a bucket in my hands. I see folks who have the ability to bring in large equipment to get s solid foundation for all those little systems that take time to develop and I feel like I'll never get there at this rate. I see guys like Lawton and Holzer who take over a place and in a matter of weeks have all the water catchment stuff dug out and huge hugel mounds built and planted. From there it's all about tweaking the details.
I see my land and all the potential it has but know that even renting a track hoe for a weekend would take me a few years to save up for. Forget about having a pro come in and design it out to work right. Then a few more years to buy in trees. Then all the support species would take the next few years after that. By the time I'd be satisfied I'll be sitting in my rocking chair drooling. I'm not saying that it isn't worth the effort. I take a lot of inspiration from those guys and gals that can do those large scale projects in quick time. When I hear them say that Permaculture is how we're going to "save" the planet, I have the drive to get going and do my part. I just don't want to die before I can make that difference. That's all.
So there's the problem. How do i make it the solution? That's kind of where I'm stuck. But... I'm still pluggin away at it. Day by day. I'm farther now than I thought I would be just a year ago. but... you know...


 
Tyler Ludens
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Craig, maybe do what some other folks do, gather some interested people, invite a speaker or two, and see if you can generate enough interest to get people to do some work on your place, possibly even pitch in some $. Maybe get some friends to help you prepare a project for http://www.wethetrees.com/. If you don't have any friends or family, this sort of thing might be harder. You might have to work through MeetUp.com or similar social media. Or if you have issues of social anxiety, autism, or other disabilities, it might be next to impossible if you don't have friends or family. But most people don't have a combination of zero friends and major disabilities. Here's a real-life example: My sister and I both have disabilities, but we're working on trying to get an educational facility going on the place here. We're going to try to get funding through WeTheTrees. I have almost no people skills, fortunately my sister has some, though she has major health problems, but she is still going ahead with this project.

Just trying to be encouraging here. I think you might be putting up some barriers to yourself which, if you look at things a little differently, might not be such enormous ones.



 
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Location: Near Beaver Valley, Ontario, Canada
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Gary Stuart wrote:If the land deal we're pursuing doesn't go through, our next option is to look for someone who owns land, shares our vision, and would appreciate having us around, exchanging work for rent, etc. Easier said than found up here in the Great White North, however.



Have you looked at http://www.farmlink.net/farm_map.html ?

I'm advertising my farm on that website (http://www.farmlink.net/farmland.html?id=41) but we aren't a good fit for most people because of the housing issue (my wife and I, and our 2 young sons live in the house, and anyone coming on to the property would have to either live in the equivalent of a camper trailer or a (very) tiny house, because of building code restrictions).

My preference is market gardeners, but my wife would be happy with someone that would help move some of our gardening/permaculture projects forward in exchange for living on the property. However I'm not sure how to work something like that in a way that would be fair to everyone involved.
 
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Location: Arkansas Ozarks, Newton County
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Judith Browning wrote:Hi, Susan....Pretty picky, I guess, in that we hope for a young couple/family already obsessively into an organic/permaculture philosophy and just needing the land to make it happen. I did kind of skip the downsides to life in the Ozarks like ticks, snakes, heat, too much rain, tornados, not enough rain ,forest fires, bad roads, no money.....But on the other hand you should try to live your ideal at any age.
Good luck.



Judith how close are you to newton county?
 
Judith Browning
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jerubbaal05 Hatfield wrote:

Judith Browning wrote:Hi, Susan....Pretty picky, I guess, in that we hope for a young couple/family already obsessively into an organic/permaculture philosophy and just needing the land to make it happen. I did kind of skip the downsides to life in the Ozarks like ticks, snakes, heat, too much rain, tornados, not enough rain ,forest fires, bad roads, no money.....But on the other hand you should try to live your ideal at any age.
Good luck.



Judith how close are you to newton county?



Not very....we're trying word of mouth locally first...I probably shouldn't have mentioned it here yet. Newton area is beautiful, older growth forest and the river, I remember. send a PM to us and I can let you know more.
 
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I, too, love this topic.

I am 48 and in debt past my eyeballs paying for parent student loans. Now that the kids are graduated, it's finally time for me to answer this calling that has been pulling at me since I was about 8 years old! Four decades of putting homesteading aside dealing with immediate needs...So anyway, starting at less than zero it'll take a couple years to save up some down payment, and then an uphill battle to get financing for construction, and then I'll have to keep at least partial employment until social security kicks in. It's a crazy dream for a woman my age by herself! Just spent 4 years in Korea and will be spending the next couple years with my kids in the bay area as I save save save.

So aging in place is very much on my mind. My children are worried I'll get lonely, and worry about my safety. All the affordable land is so far away from them...

My plan is to have a large aquaponics greenhouse set-up attached to my house, and a small patch next to that. My house will be passive solar, and looking for a site where it can be earth sheltered, so biofuel would only be supplementary - either rocket mass heater or pellet stove so I don't have to chop wood. Aside from the fish, I want to raise a low maintenance game bird like squab. The rest will be forest garden. I'm pretty skilled at many small things, so I think I can come up with a winter cottage industry. So I don't need more than an acre, as long as there is a forest edge to one side of it so hopefully mobility wouldn't be too much of an issue.

Basically, I'm in a race against time to get the labor equity in before my body starts going downhill. If I can pay down the land & construction before 68, then I can die without worries!

I think it would be so awesome if some large land holders would owner finance some small parcels at their borders. Could bring them some monthly cash, and good like-minded independent quiet neighbor and help make somebody's dream possible!
 
Acetylsalicylic acid is aspirin. This could be handy too:
Rumpelstiltskin ain't got nothing on this
https://permies.com/wiki/92731/fiber-arts/Homegrown-Linen-transforming-flaxseed-fibre
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