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Michael Milligan
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Hello!

I live in the Vancouver area and I was wondering if any of you are near-by? I'm also generally curious about the distribution of permies globally. Is there such a thing as a permaculture hot spot?
 
brock foster
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Location: British Columbia, Canada
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Michael Milligan wrote:Hello!

I live in the Vancouver area and I was wondering if any of you are near-by? I'm also generally curious about the distribution of permies globally. Is there such a thing as a permaculture hot spot?


All around you fellow permi.. on the mainland on vancouver island.. try www.meetup.com or even www.ourecovillage.org or catch me on fbook www.facebook.com/sbrockfoster/

Welcome to the permies boards.. namaste'
 
Saybian Morgan
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Location: Lower Mainland British Columbia Canada Zone 8a/ Manchester Jamaica
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plenty from bc, plenty even in the vancouver area. I'm on the westcoast express everyday from the bush of coquitlam.
 
Rod Endacott
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Hi Michael, I'm up in 100 Mile House, but was born and raised in Vancouver and area.

Up here, in the Cariboo, permaculture is in many ways another name for the "the way my grandfather did it". For some it is still the way it's done.

I've farmed and worked outside all my life, always with a sense of what is right relative to all beings.

Rod
 
Michael Milligan
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I've joined a few meetup groups, but haven't actually met anyone yet. An isolated permie is a sad thing

 
Misty Rayne
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Location: SW Ontario, Canada
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Hello!! I myself am not from BC but my husband and I are VERY interested in moving out to the west coast. I don't meant to steal your thread Michael. But I was wondering were is the warmest areas either on the mainland or on the island? also within 45-60min drive of a large town/city for work and hospital? And this may sound like a dumb question but do the waters between Vancouver island and the main land ever freeze during the winter? I see so many islands between the 2 that would require a boat to go back and forth. Thanks for any info!!
 
Michael Milligan
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The climate in the south west coastal region is much as Seattle. No there is no ice on the ocean here. We only had snow 2 days this past winter. The greater vancouver area contains almost 3 million people and has many hospitals. You are in no shortage for choice.

There is a developed ferry system between vancouver island and the mainland. As you've seen on a map, there are hundreds of islands there and some are easier to get to than others. One in particular, Saltspring island, is known for hippies so I assume there are many permies there.

BUT the reason I myself hope to leave the are is land costs. They are likely better on the island than in the lower mainland. You won't find a house in vancouver without shelling out a million $ or more. The farther out you go the lower the cost. There are SPRAWLING suburbs. I live in one called Surrey.
 
Stijn De Winter
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Location: Antwerp, Belgium
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Hi Michael

We are looking to immigrate to BC (from Europe) and are scouting the province for the best area to settle. We'll bring 3 horses so we do need quite a few acres to be able to sustain them comfortably. We'll have probably at least one more when we arrive and I think I'll want some sheep and/or goats and pigs as well later on. Are there any permaculture hotspots in the area? Are there area's where (natural) horsemanship are popular perhaps? We don't know much about the province yet, except for what we read on the internet. I have lived in Ontario for a while so I am a bit familiar with Canada. We plan to do a trip to scout the area in person in the spring but for now it is still 'desk research' .

I would love to be not too far from a mountain range and a (bigger) city, preferably with an international airport for my work that requires international travel once in a while. I would love to get in touch with interesting people in the province to learn about the heritage of the area, get to know the local growing methods and varieties etc... For me an interesting community is a big plus.
 
Kirk Hockin
Posts: 67
Location: Merville, BC
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Hi Stijn (and hello to fellow BCers),

I was born and raised on Vancouver Island, and still live there, so I'll try and give you an overview of BC.

There is only 1 real international airport, Vancouver. While some of the other airports fly 'internationally' it's really only to certain US locations, as far as I know. You might be able to fly from one of the regional airports to another larger centre, and then fly on internationally, but the main hub for the province is Vancouver. As Michael said Vancouver is large and expensive. Houses on urban lots run over $1 million Canadian; acreages.... I don't even want to know. So unless you're loaded, forget about living within a few hours of Vancouver and owning land.

As for the rest of the Province there is:

-The Islands: Vancouver Island is big (bigger than Belgium...), population about 500,000. The other islands (the Gulf Islands) are much smaller. All of the islands are only accessible by ferry, and they are in the process of reducing ferry service to the Gulf Islands. Otherwise the Islands are typical Maritime Temperate Rain Forest, lots of mountains and hills.

The Okanagon: This is South Central, big lakes, fairly expensive, wine growing country (used to be fruit orchards). Drier than the coast, more temperature extremes. High population density (many retirees and vacation homes owned by Alberta oil money).

The Kootenays: This is the South East part of the province, lot's of mountains and valleys. Some wetter, some drier. Many small towns (5000 - 20,000 population). The towns can be quite different... Nelson is hippy, Castlegar is resource based (logging/mining), Creston is agricultural...

The Cariboo-Chilcotin: This is the Central part of the province. Emptier, drier, Ranching, Logging, Mining... This probably the best part of the province for real 'Horse Country', especially if you want the cowboy feel, rather than the 'equestrian' feel.

The North: Even though it's called 'The North' it's really the northern half of the province... Very empty... bigger than Sweden... One city, Prince George (pop 70,000).

As for mountain ranges, it would be impossible to live anywhere in the province and not be near a mountain range... They tend to get bigger as you head East.

You could check the real estate listings for an idea of regional land prices: http://beta.realtor.ca/index.aspx

And the Federal Weather site will help you get a feel for the climates: http://weather.gc.ca/forecast/canada/index_e.html?id=BC

And here's a BC Permaculture site: http://www.permaculturebc.com/

I'd be happy to answer any specific questions you might have, though I'm a Island boy, so the coast is more my area of experience.

Cheers!
 
Stijn De Winter
Posts: 9
Location: Antwerp, Belgium
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Hi Kirk

Thanks a lot for your post. It is really helpful to start our search for the best possible location to live!

I do have a question. How's the climate on the coast? Do you live on the West or East end of the Island? Do you grow your own food there?

Cheers
Stijn
 
Kirk Hockin
Posts: 67
Location: Merville, BC
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Hi Stijn,

Vancouver Island is about 460km long and runs NE/SW. Most of the population lives on the east side of the Island, and on the southern half of the east side. The biggest city is Victoria with a population of 350,000. The west coast of the Island is almost completely wilderness with only a few small fishing/logging/tourism settlements.

I live on the east side, about half way up the Island. My area is the last 'large' population center on the way north, there are only small towns on the northern half (the biggest one is 4000 people). I'm planning on growing lots of food, but we've only been here 6 months and it will take a while to get serious food production happening.

The climate is mild and wet, though most of the rainfall (80%) is October to April. The summers are dry. The west side is facing the Pacific ocean and much wetter than the east side. There are lots of little local microclimates. Obviously as one moves north up the Island, winters get a bit colder, though the 'big city' of Victoria is rarely the hottest place in the summer (southern tip of the island so lots of wind to cool off the weather). Summer temps rarely get above 30C while Winter temps rarely get below 0C (though we did get 4-5 days of -10C two weeks ago). Again, it depends on local variations and latitude.

As for growing food... We have small (5-50 ha) commercial wineries on the Island, though the red wines are rarely worth drinking. We can grow kiwis, apples, pears, but stone fruits (peaches etc...) often have a hard time ripening, as do hot peppers, melons. Even tomatoes take some care to get good crops (cooler summers). On the other hand we can grow lots of brassicas and greens that keep in the ground all winter long. People even grow ornamental palm trees and banana trees in Victoria. The southern end of the island claims to have a 9 month growing season... albeit a cool 9 months. There are numerous pockets of permaculture, and many, many people who grow gardens and food in a more 'traditional' sense.

Cheers!

 
Stijn De Winter
Posts: 9
Location: Antwerp, Belgium
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Hi Kirk

That's much warmer than what I expected actually, which is very nice.
Is there something like a average price per acre on Vancouver island?

Cheers
 
Kirk Hockin
Posts: 67
Location: Merville, BC
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Hi Stijn,

We are definitely the mildest part of Canada, both winter and summer. And very long, wet, grey winters. Some folks who move here have a hard time with the winters if they are used to colder, sunnier climates. Some folks who move here miss 'real' summers...

As for land prices, well BC is generally expensive compared to much of North America, but I imagine Europe (especially the north) is far more expensive. Price per acre decreases as the size of the property increases... so you might pay $300,000 for 2 acres, $500,000 for 7 acres and $1.5 million for 40 acres. But it also is very dependent on location, land and what sort of buildings are present.

You also need to keep in mind that the Island is atypical, since most of our settlement is along one highway. Unlike most areas, you won't find property 360 degrees around a town, most of the properties will be either north or south of town, while the other directions are ocean and mountains. This limits availability of potential real estate.

Here's one website that lists some of the acreages for sale in my area: http://www.comoxvalleyacreages.com/properties/acreages/

Happy New Year!
 
Stijn De Winter
Posts: 9
Location: Antwerp, Belgium
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Oh well, Belgium must be the wettest country in Europe. It can't be that much worse

Although an acreage is still a big sum of money, it is nowhere near what we pay here in Belgium. 0,1 Acre would be around $120k in the northern part of you are allowed to build on it and around $60k for 2,5 acres of pure farmland without permission for more than a animal shelter. Living space is scarce here, although it is much worse in other European countries like Italy or The Netherlands.

I browsed through the site you sent. Thanks a lot! You seem to have settled in a very nice spot of the world there! The 'Forbidden Plateau' area is very appealing. We love area's with as little human influence as possible and from what I read, there is a conservation effort there? One of the properties had this description: "This property is one of a select few in the area with equestrian zoning in the area". What is Equestrian zoning? Is it required to have a few horses or only for large scale horse breeding (which is not our intention).

You mentioned it can be quite windy there. What can we expect? Is it windy in the Comox valley as well or only on the edges of the island?

I seem to be showering you with questions here .

Happy holidays for you as well!

Cheers
 
Kirk Hockin
Posts: 67
Location: Merville, BC
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Hey Stijn,

Sorry it's been a while since your last post... life gets busy, eh?

Forbidden Plateau is beautiful, but some of those properties may be fairly high in elevation, which means a lot more snow, and a much shorter growing season; it might also make access more challenging in the winter.

I'm not sure about the 'equestrian zoning', we have lots of zoning variation around here... In any case it would be 'allowed to have horses' not 'horses required'. Almost all of our zoning laws are about restrictions not requirements (other than basic building codes as well as health and safety).

As for the wind, it will be windiest closer to the water. I grew up in Victoria, which is the southern tip of the Island (surrounded by ocean) and since moving here I have been surprised by how much less wind there is, though we are a few kilometres from the coast. That being said, when a real storm blows through it hits everywhere (winds of 100 km/h yesterday). It can really change based on specific location, though. As I said, lots of microclimates.

Cheers!
 
Roberto pokachinni
pollinator
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Misty Rayne wrote: I was wondering were is the warmest areas either on the mainland or on the island? also within 45-60min drive of a large town/city for work and hospital? And this may sound like a dumb question but do the waters between Vancouver island and the main land ever freeze during the winter? I see so many islands between the 2 that would require a boat to go back and forth. Thanks for any info!!


If I'm not to assume that you only mean the Lower Mainland (which is a regional term in B.C. for the area that includes Vancouver and the lower Fraser River watershed to Hope, B.C.) but the mainland in general, the hottest places are in the sage and canyon lands of the South Central Interior: Kamloops, Kelowna, Lytton. These places because of being in the interior, are colder than on the coast in the winter. The warmest parts of the province, by average throughout the year are on the Sunshine Coast (a short single ferry ride from the Lower Mainland), the South Coastal (also known as Gulf) islands, Lower Mainland and Southern and South Eastern Vancouver Island.

I was born and raised in the North Coast Mountains, just south of the Alaska Panhandle in Terrace, B.C., which used to produce a lot of fruit before the town transitioned from pastoral to industrial. The warm oceanic current-that comes up from Asia and Down alaska and on the B.C. coast-brings warm (ish) rain, and mild winters. Even that far north winters are far milder than say Chicago, Detroit, or Denver. Because of the warm ocean and mild temps, there are very few oceanic areas that are covered with ice in B.C..

 
Roberto pokachinni
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Stijn De Winter wrote:

We are looking to immigrate to BC (from Europe) and are scouting the province for the best area to settle. We'll bring 3 horses so we do need quite a few acres to be able to sustain them comfortably... Are there area's where (natural) horsemanship are popular perhaps?

I would love to be not too far from a mountain range and a (bigger) city, preferably with an international airport for my work that requires international travel once in a while. I would love to get in touch with interesting people in the province to learn about the heritage of the area, get to know the local growing methods and varieties etc... For me an interesting community is a big plus.


Hi Stijn,

not sure how to pronounce your name?

Anyway, my land is in Dunster B.C. up in the central Rockies near the town and National Park of Jasper Alberta. This is big mountain and wilderness area, and is surrounded by large parks. The City of Edmonton (International airport) is 5.5 hours away to the east on the highway (that might seem a long drive but in the interior of Canada, it's nothing! Prince George with a regional airport is 2.5 hours drive to the west. The Robson Valley, which is part of the Fraser River Headwaters, is primarily agricultural, and there are a number of horse ranches that offer various horsemanship experiences though I'm not sure of there nature. The Land is considerable cheaper the further you get from Vancouver, and other large cities. I purchased my 40 acres for $125,000 CAN, which was a good deal, but not unheard of. The area does have some small scale permaculture ideas going on, but it is more of a specifically organic gardening (wwoofing) hotspot than a permaculture one. I'm hoping to change that! But I haven't begun on my project yet.

The winters are long, and the frosts can descend out of the mountains anytime even in summer, but you'd be surprised at what can be grown with the high latitude sunlight, and a greenhouse.

I will be on the land, hopefully, for part of this spring, and maybe all of it and the summer or be nearby, and you'd be welcome to come by if you were touring the province.



 
Stijn De Winter
Posts: 9
Location: Antwerp, Belgium
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Thank you for the insights Kirk and Roberto.

My name would be pronounced something close to 'stan' but with the 'a' sounding more like the 'i' in 'island' . Dutch hey...

Being able to keep and ride the horses in nature is must for us. We don't breed horses for a living, which might be an activity related to the 'equestrian zoning' thing... We just need a couple of acres of pasture for them. We do like the idea of Vancouver island for the time being, it feels good. We will probably include a visit in our travel.

Also, I had no idea that places like Terrace could be 'mild', so far North! That is interesting. I looked it up and Prince Rupert also seems to be the wettest city in Canada... Hmm. We are looking for a place that is wooded, but has enough clearing for pastures. Coast is not necessary, but a source of freshwater is. I do like hiking in the mountains but I don't mind driving a little to go out... I think Vancouver island has much of those requirements on offer...

You seem to have had a good deal there Roberto! How do you use your land?
 
Roberto pokachinni
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Location: Fraser Headwaters, B.C., Zone3, Latitude 53N, Altitude 2750', Boreal/Temperate Rainforest-transition
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Hi Stign,

So your name might sound more like how I might say Steiner as in Rudolf Steiner.
Do you you say the first part with a bit of a shhh sound as in hush or is the the S more like in hiss? Facinating!

My land was just purchased a couple years ago... well still paying for it, and I haven't done anything to it yet, except throw some berries around to see what happens. I've been working in Vancouver, as I had a steady job there, to get the paying part done, but I'm done with that work and I'm trying to formulate a business plan to go forward with the farm venture. I have some ideas, but nothing solid yet.

The reason I wouldn't go to Vancouver Island is that the coast is really densely bushed. B.C. is massive vast and diverse, so you have a lot of options. I would suggest doing some research, and spending a bit of time and money calling people in various offices in towns that you might be interested in all over the place. You'd be surprised at what comes out of that for little expenditure.

If you want to ride horses in nature in B.C. then I would suggest the Chilcotin. That's B.C.'s big sky country. Everywhere else is too dense with bush or urbanization. On the bush front, some folks I know have a massive cross country skiing network of trails cut through their bush that they maintain partly so they can ride their horses in nature. There might be some problem finding the right community in the Chilcotin, I don't know; I don't spend enough time there. Lots of good people in Canada and this province, so you can generally find what you are looking for.

As kirk mentioned, I think equestrian zoning is more like a municipal law. A town law might say, "you can't have horses at all here, here, and over here, but way over here you can have horses in this zone, and in this zone way over here you can also have horses. From that point there may be additional municipal laws over whether you have a commercial venture, or are just having a few mares of your own as pets/companions/hobbies/transportation. Any realtor will be able to tell you if the land you are looking at is allowed to have a few horses. In the chilcotin there's a lot of people with horses, and laws that restrict them would be rare, but the main bonuses about the Chilcotin is the bush is less dense and way way cheaper. I don't know you, so I'm not sure what you are looking for in a good community. If your looking for a hippy commune then there might be one in the Chilcotin, but your more likely to find a large cattle operation.

Yes, Terrace can be wet, like Prince Rupert, but it is a bit of what is called a banana belt is it is in a great micro climate. Before WW II it was agricultural based and was exporting fruit (pears, apples, cherries, and plums) by train. It was marketed as the "Okanogan of the North". The Okanogan is B.C.'s main fruit producing area near the US border, in the dry hot interior. They can grow apricots grapes and peaches commercially there. That area is more a semi desert, and is also a likely possibility for riding horses in wild lands. There's a lot more people in that area than the Chilcotin. And in parts of the Chilcotin there are mountains as well.

Good luck with it.
 
Stijn De Winter
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Location: Antwerp, Belgium
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Hi Roberto

Steiner is close, with less of a 'shhhh' and more of 's' like in hiss indeed, but very short

Thanks for the information you wrote down. I've been looking into the Chilcotin / Cariboo area and found out there are even wild horses around lake Chilko! If I am correct the vegetation is a mix of pine forests and plains / bushy plains type of area? There are many interesting area's around there but a lot less roads to get around. How's the area around clearwater? Thats a a little under 3h drive from your land if Google is correct? The temperature averages in cities like Kamloops and Williams lake seem quite mild in comparison to other places I've looked up? We plan to come over and drive around to visit a shortlist of places/ which we are putting together now.

The most important insight right now is that the climate seems very diverse all over BC... Generalisations are not very productive. In terms of community we don't really have big expectations but like people who tend to love sustainable ways of living from an ecological point of view, but also a social and spiritual point of view... The actual land will be important, we are looking for a place of beauty to co-exist with.

It's such a beautiful country
 
Roberto pokachinni
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Hi Stign.

So I think I've got your name down.

B.C. is indeed a beautiful place to be. I feel very fortunate to have been born and raised here and to find land here too. It's not so easy from a permaculture view to have such a short season, but I just couldn't think of planting myself anywhere else. If beautiful is what you want, in the opinion of many, you will find it here!

Clearwater is definately getting a little less bushy then the Robson Valley (you are right about the distance), where my land is, but it still can be quite bushy there. A little south, in Barrier the forest really starts to open up, and just a little further towards Kamloops, it's sparse forest and the further you go south desert type plants dominate with sparser and sparser trees. The area of desert (which extends up from the U.S. and is partly natural) is growing and will continue to grow if current management practices are continued. Clearwater is warmer and the valley opens to the south there so the climate is 'better' there than where my land is.

You are correct about the Chilcotin's vegetation. It is the sub boreal version of a savannah, in my mind. The area, when explored, I am told, is quite diverse as well. From what I understand this area is changing rapidly due to the loss of so much pine due to the pine beetle infestation, and being just North and West of the desert region, and having hot summers (generally), it's possible that the desert will expand in that direction as well but there has been surprising deciduous regrowth and shrubs in response to the pine die off. Gotta love the Earth's natural recovery processes!

The Chilcotin and the Caribou are very large areas, and they sort of blend a bit as you head into Williams lake, Horsefly, 100 mile house. These areas are worth checking out for sure. There is a lot of horse folk in the area. There is a rodeo in most towns. Williams lake has the biggest horse event: The William's Lake stampede. I think.

One thing to consider in horse friendly more open country, is this is where the largest and more frequent forest fires occur. Barrier, for instance, was mostly destroyed by a fire in 2003 (which I was a forest fire fighter on). And the largest fire in the province that year was in the Chilcotin but it was in total wilderness, and the government didn't bother doing anything about it. So if you build, you will want to build a fireproof house as much as possible. Straw bale with thick cob works, as do a few other natural systems. Having a large nearby pond, with pump and hose handy is a real bonus, and potential life saver.

B.C. is full of rivers and mountains so the road system is pretty much dictated by the rugged landscape, unless logging is involved, then... well, they go pretty much everywhere. In logging country you can drive a long long long way in the back country without seeing a single person. It's such massive country here that it's hard to really figure out how to describe it to someone from Belgium. I'm not sure what to compare it to. Perhaps if you have an imagination of a place that has places like Poland, Finland, Switzerland, and Russia, as well as England, Norway, and France, then you start to get an idea. Just keep in mind that this was one of the last areas to be colonized by Europeans, and as such, unlike say New England in the Eastern U.S. which have had colonization for 400 years, there's not as much roadwork or other development.
 
Len Ovens
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Kirk Hockin wrote:
I live on the east side, about half way up the Island. My area is the last 'large' population center on the way north, there are only small towns on the northern half (the biggest one is 4000 people). I'm planning on growing lots of food, but we've only been here 6 months and it will take a while to get serious food production happening.


Your side bar says Merville and then you say Large? I am guessing you mean either CV or CR or both (the two together are around 150000 population these days)

I have been in Courtenay for about 6 years now. I don't know if the current weather trend is part of a cycle or general warming, but the first two years had winter. Snow from end of November till end of January with some thaws in the middle. I deliver Mail and remember walking through 18inch snow and then slush. Then it has warmed up till this year I am still working outside in short sleeves most of the time. It seemed to me that when I lived on the mainland (the 26 years before that), it seemed to me colder and more snow. The lower mainland is not as protected from the ocean as the east side of the Island.

We are in town now, but are looking to get out of town but in the same area. I had to wait for my wife to get her drivers license.

As far as jobs go... I transfered in and my wife is a nurse and this is a retirement community (Comox is full of retirees) so the big thing here is health care. The mainland has more, but more travel too. I was getting $3 an hour more there than here, but I was working a 10 hour day for 8 hours pay as well as spending $10 on transit. Now travel time is about 5 to 10 min. I wouldn't move back. I wouldn't move here without a job though. (or pension)

I can start tomatoes outside in feb so long as I lean a window over them for frost protection. (we grew them agaist a wall) Everything is still green out. Truthfully I am not much of a gardener, but the biggest problem I know of in this area is the deer. I don't think I go a day without seeing deer and they are very tame and not afraid of much. I see a lot of black webbing spread over plants.
 
Kirk Hockin
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Location: Merville, BC
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Hi Len,

Well... by large I mean 'bigger than Port MacNeil'... Large enough to have more than 1 pizza place, more than 1 gas station, more than 1 grocery store... large enough to live in the country, close to services and still have hope for a modicum of 'urban' culture... Large enough to have a choice of high schools for teens (in case things go south at the first school).

Speaking of the weather, did you get enough of a winter taste the last few weeks? Are you heading to Seedy Saturday?

 
Len Ovens
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Kirk Hockin wrote:Hi Len,

Well... by large I mean 'bigger than Port MacNeil'... Large enough to have more than 1 pizza place, more than 1 gas station, more than 1 grocery store... large enough to live in the country, close to services and still have hope for a modicum of 'urban' culture... Large enough to have a choice of high schools for teens (in case things go south at the first school).

Speaking of the weather, did you get enough of a winter taste the last few weeks? Are you heading to Seedy Saturday?



Not sure about Seedy Saturday, We went a few years ago, it was a bit much for the kids.

Winter? I work outside as a letter carrier... I hope it melts fast! It took me over an hour longer today.
 
Kirk Hockin
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Len Ovens wrote:

Winter? I work outside as a letter carrier... I hope it melts fast! It took me over an hour longer today.


I'm just getting tired of snow only on the weekends... I want get to work around the property!
 
Len Ovens
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Kirk Hockin wrote:
I'm just getting tired of snow only on the weekends... I want get to work around the property!


I want property to work around We are just about to that point now. We do need to do some fixing around the place before we move though.
 
Blayne Prowse
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Hi Len and Kirk. I am up the hill in Cumberland. Nice to see a couple other permies in the area!
 
Kevin Pegg
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Hi Folks,

I live on a 160 acre, established off-grid (solar and wind powered) homestead in the Bulkley Valley - Smithers, BC area. I designed and sold the solar/wind off-grid power system to the previous owners in 2002 and got to know them as friends. When they decided to sell the property it was a 2 second decision to buy and relocate up here from Vancouver Island.

This is my third winter up here, getting to know the land, building out the gardens and figuring out what is next. The land is great - lots of water (several ponds and springs), good sun exposure, decent soil just full of potential for small or large scale agriculture. The short northern growing season is new to me. Lots and lots of passionate farmers in the area willing to share knowledge. The whole area is very agricultural.

I built a shop / office building on the property in fall 2012 and have relocated my business to run off the land.

The last project completed in Fall of 2013 before freeze up was building up a Hugelkultur bed. Looking forward to growing lots on that this year.

A project for 2014 is a greenhouse. There is a very basic plastic one from the previous owners, and it extends the growing season significantly. Thinking a better designed, winter appropriate greenhouse will get into 4 season growing.

Open to the idea of other people joining in on the land somehow. 160 acres is a heck of a lot of land I am discovering!

Kevin

 
Len Ovens
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Blayne Prowse wrote:Hi Len and Kirk. I am up the hill in Cumberland. Nice to see a couple other permies in the area!


It has been surprising the weather differences from even Courtenay(where I live) to Comox (where I work) and I guess Cumberland is different again (Farther up the hill). I have been given a kick in the pants to start looking for a larger plot of land again... maybe a bit south towards Fanny Bay.
 
Stijn De Winter
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It's nice to read all these different experiences. I have been watching the Weather Network on a weekly basis and installed 'Comox Valley' as a favourite. It's pretty cold there for over 6 weeks! Meanwhile here in Belgium it's the warmest winter since the beginning of the measurements. I've seen the temperature drop below freezing point only twice for a couple of hours during the night. Really weird. Guess we'll have loads of insects this year...

I'm keeping track of this topic for a while .
 
Len Ovens
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doing some look see at land today.... Found a place with a 350sqft home built with permit. The pad is twice the size and obviously was set up for a 35ft RV... the RV serving as kitchen and the house giving bathroom/laundry. From that it would seem that Strathcona Dist. is not too hard to get along with when it comes to building permits. It is encouraging anyway.
 
Roberto pokachinni
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It's been an incredibly cold February up in my neck of the woods. Last night was minus 25 (we've had weeks this month that it did not get above minus 10 and it's been as low as minus 35... thank goodness there is very little wind!!), and right now it is minus 5 on a sunny afternoon. It's been so cold here that the 4 feet of snow barely forms any crust, which is unheard of at this stage of the winter usually. Heading out with the snowshoes with the dog for some vitamin D.
 
Blayne Prowse
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Len Ovens wrote:doing some look see at land today.... Found a place with a 350sqft home built with permit. The pad is twice the size and obviously was set up for a 35ft RV... the RV serving as kitchen and the house giving bathroom/laundry. From that it would seem that Strathcona Dist. is not too hard to get along with when it comes to building permits. It is encouraging anyway.


Thats really cool! I am very unsure about the RD and trying to do things differently. My Grandpa built a stackwall house in the mid-80's in Union Bay, fully permitted. The inspector was very obliging and helpful. But that was a different generation ago. Not sure how these University bred inspectors are now. I work in the trades and we hear horror stories. I have thought about either Bowser or Sayward if I could swing it, or Cortez Island. Land is just so darn much $$ here, and not much that is very interesting for sale. Planning my backyard food forest for my Cumby house anyways
 
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