So I thought I would start to put together some of my photos in one place.
We have 10 acres in South central Wyoming. It is in a subdivision that is surrounded by large cattle ranches and national forest land.
It is very isolated, about a 3/4 hour drive, on mostly dirt roads, to the nearest small town.
It is on the north west facing slope of a mountain. A gradual slope . The sun comes up in summer at about 730 am and sets at about 830 pm, so it gets pretty good sun light.
It is at about 7500 to 8000 ft elevation in a zone 2-4. It has two drainages through it. So far they both dry up in August. Two years ago the snow pack up above us was really heavy and the main creek ran all summer. We also have a large spring on the property.
The land goes from a typical Wyoming sagebrush desert to a lush well watered fir forest. Mostly it is covered with aspen.
We only get up there one week every month, when the snow is not to deep. Which ends up being May through October in a dry year.
So I try to get as much done as I can in a short amount of time.
So far we have leveled an area for a camp. We found a really neat 1955 Spartan travel trailer to live in. Have piped water from the spring. No utilities, so we use solar lighting and propane as needed. And have an outhouse.
I have been trying to document the plants that are there and have been throwing out tons of fruit seeds as I hike through the landscape. I hope to create some hugels and swales for more food crops, and some ponds also.
So it is a work in progress and not as far along as some of the other fantastic projects that others have shown here at permies.
*** NOTES: Bring a shovel, gloves, & proper foot ware. We are going to make a swell so you can actually see how it works. There will be a small piece of equipment on site so think safety, bring vest if you have one.
* If you want more to eat or drink, bring it ( Example: an adult beverage AFTER the earthworks) but I am sure you will not leave my table hungry! NUMBER ONE THING, have a good Time! If you feel that you cannot contain yourself and behave in a respectful manner, don’t come. I think you know some of the people that will be here and I am sure they will help you leave.
Our Other Instructors and Presenters:
Amy Elben: A native Wyomingite, Amy is an herbalist here in Wyoming. She uses the art of permaculture to grow food and medicine on a small homestead here. She is one of the only people I know that is growing wolfberries (Goji berries), and aronia berries in this climate and altitude. She makes her own medicines, teaches alternative Medicines & Herbs, and works her land. Owner of The Farmacy she teaches people to "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food." Amy will be giving a class on Companion Planting in Wyoming.
Christopher Di Cicco: Owner of Sol Survivor and Cross Fit Training facility (http://www.solsurvivor.com/) in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Christopher has been rigorously and professionally instructing throughout the Combat Operators of the Department of Defense (DoD) for over 30 years. His Instructors have a cumulative 51 years of Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape (S.E.R.E) and Rescue techniques under their belts. They instruct in Defensive Driving, High Risk of Isolation, and High Risk Environmental Survival.
Rob Twyford: This born and bred Wyoming Cowboy is a Hobby gold prospector. He owns one of the largest gold dredging systems that one can have before being considered a professional prospector. Rob, a member of GPAA (Gold Prospectors Association of America), is a Wyoming Mountain Man. He instructs on Panning for gold, camping for months, and living off the land with what is only in your pocket at the time.
Maija Smith: Owner of AllWays Granola (https://www.facebook.com/allways.granola/info) Maija has a gluten free, sugar free base granola product! Using local raw honey and canola oil is a great fit for specific diets or lifestyles, ie. Vegan, paleo or gluten free. Each of her blends is made to order as well, so if you have any nut or fruit allergies, likes or dislikes, she will add or omit so you can still enjoy this wonderful granola to the fullest! Great for Preppers, survivalists, specific diets, or camping out, it is Allways Granola.
Michael Jordan: Owner of A BEE Friendly Company, Inc. founded I.P.U.G. His growing interest in self-preservation and the love of the earth has made him more than a beekeeper. One of the few called “Bee Activist”; his teaching on beekeeping has been heard all over the world. He has worked with Worlds of Wonder Discovery Channel, Bee’s Without Boarders, The Pearl Foundation, Boys & Girl scouts, various 4-H groups, The Rotary Club, and many youth programs ...teaching the lost art of beekeeping. His travels and stories of how biodynamic beekeeping and growing your own food can change the world will make you smile and cry. With his new type of bee hive, Michael hopes to put a bee hives everywhere. “When people tell me about green technology jobs and products, I laugh, because there is nothing greener then what I am. A beekeeper.”
Make your reservations for this valuable and fun filled day of learning NOW,,,before the classes are completely filled. See the world, and your place in it...in a whole new light! We look forward to seeing you in Cheyenne on June 21st.
Miles, you can see for miles and miles. That's nice. I don't think you'll ever run out of aspen for hugelkultur.
I was looking for a quote about the landscape of Wyoming, and found one in my signature.
I think with the right use of permie principles, most of Wyoming could be turned into a paradise. Miles Flansburg Attitude is half of the battle. When you see your goal up ahead, things become clear as the Wyoming sky.
I have a pretty good thicket of them along the year round stream that forms the southern edge of our 10 acres in the mountains. They are very tasty - in July for us.
That property starts at 4,000 foot and ends up at 4,500 with most of that 500 foot ascent in the northern 2 or 3 acres. I'm figuring that face for my Wofati, the second attempt anyway. We have a closer property we want to try one out on first. Plenty of "dog hair" from that cutting that went on 20 years ago, so just have to get up there, cut it, clean it and let it season for a year. One step at a time, and eventually you travel an interesting road.
I have been leveling an area for our main camp for a couple of summers now. This created a deep cut to the north side as I dug into the hill. So i decided to add a hugel around one side to encourage the trees to grow around the camp for shade and windbreak. I didn't get it finished as it started to rain and didn't stop for 24 hours. So the swale and wood got soaked ! Will cover the wood next month and plant it.
Looking good Miles. I'm also using lots of trash trees for hugelkultur. I'm getting most from roadways and areas that will be farmed. Last fall, I took out some standing dead wood and planned to go further until several woodpeckers visited. There are a number of dying alder in a swampy area. They are feeding and nesting trees, so they will stay. Along my dry ridge, there is a cedar that may have been dead for 50+ years. Ravens and eagles use it. Standing dead wood generally attracts more wildlife than most living trees do. In our quest for hugel wood, it is easy to get carried away and clean up too much. I certainly went too far in a couple areas. Logs that lie on the ground here, often become home to huckelberries, salal, oregon grape and young trees. In my exuberance while creating beds with an excavator a couple years back, many nice living stumps were scooped up. These natural flower pots should have been left alone. Just food for thought, and food for the birds.
Don't worry I am leaving plenty ! My forest is so thick with standing and fallen wood that it is hard to walk through. I am just taking a small amount of the easy pickings, hopefully to create more trees in the future!
This summer has been very wet. Last week it rained hard but I was able to get a little work done. Got the hugel bed covered and planted. There is a bumper crop of mushrooms, I mean there are thousands popping up all over the place. I just wish I knew more about the edible ones!
No, just waiting for the snow to melt so we can get in there. Probably not until May, depends on how quick it warms up.
One of these days I want to rent a snowmobile and get in there in the dead of winter to see what it looks like!
That is the only bad part. It is back in the woods and no road maintenance. Last year was pretty wet all summer so the roads got a lot of ruts.
Mostly that good Wyoming gumbo clay so real slippery when wet. And deep snow in winter
Well, we are about done for the summer. I might be able to get up there once more in October before the snow flies.
Been pretty busy this summer trying to build a road from the front of the property to the back. Lots of tree cutting and earth moving. Now we have access to most of the property. There are still some areas that I haven't set foot on, Zone 5 stuff. Next year will be all about rebuilding beaver ponds.
The hugel at camp is settling in, lots of clover and mullen. Next spring we will try some veggies.
We had a really wet spring and there were some wild grasses that came up in areas where there were none before. Very thick and tall.
So my boss decided that my coworkers and I did not need all of those wonderful 7 day offs in our shift schedule and he put us all on 8 hr. shifts , so I only made it up to the mountain a couple of times. So not a lot was done this year. Worked on roads, and the land raised a couple more wild animals as seen on the game camera's. So see ya'all next summer !
Another summer has come and gone. This year we only made it up there a few times so didn't get as much done as I would have liked. So many projects so little time. Still working on roads, ponds, earthworks and water systems.
Lots of water, Baby moose with momma, wild chokecherries, roads, slime, and the last one is a quintessential Wyoming shot, UP railroad, two lane highway with the game and fish ranger ahead of me, and a cattle drive down the highway !