Hello, I recently found out about permaculture and decided that's the way I need to go. I tend to get lazy and I like the idea of not having to bring in any outside sources, not as much weeding, fertilizing, bug control, etc...
My husband and I live on about 1/5 acre, on a corner lot in the middle of town. The property has been in his family for over 100 years.
I'm a homemaker and constantly trying to figure out ways I can stretch the food budget, and make our money go further. So my plan is to make our whole yard into an edible, useful landscape. We can't have chickens or any other livestock, but we have 2 rabbits and 3 guinea pigs that pay their rent in manure.
One of my main goals is to be healthier and lose weight. Both of us struggle with weight, as do most of our families. I want our future kids to learn about good, real food and not grow up eating fast food.
I've already learned so much in the 30 min I've been lurking!
Hello Amanda. Welcome to permies and I hope you will share your progress. I love to see what can be done in small areas. I know that it is possible to produce over 5000lbs in a 66'x66' area. I certainly haven't done it!! but it does give me hope. The rabbits and guinea pigs for manure sound like a very good start.
I grew up in SoCal, so I certainly know the hot/dry summers you have in Fresno.
Depending on your soil, you may need to bring in some outside inputs (once) to quickly get your soil 'in shape'.
With your dry summers, watering will be a primary concern. A lot of organic material in the soil will help hold the water in the soil.
You may want to look at hugelculture ( http://www.richsoil.com/hugelkultur/ ) for even better water retention. The buriedwood will hold a lot of the winter's rain for the plants use in the drier months. A good thick layer of mulch will reduce evaporation, and keep the soil cooler in the hot sunny days.
Besides saving money on your groceries (and eating healthier), you can also grow your rabbit and guinea pig food.
Browse around the various forums here...there is a wealth of good information here to make your lives easier and healthier.