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New here, jump starting permie dream with limited income...any advice  RSS feed

 
JoAnna Shugrue
Posts: 2
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Hey all, Been wanting to start my permiculture lifestyle. Mom and I narrowly escaped a house with CO poisoning. She is rather sick from both the poisoning and a chronic illness. We want to live a simpler life that is rooted in art and the earth. We been studying for quite some time, but never had the moment to do eeet. Now we are making lemonade out of life-lemons and decided this is THE time to do this. We dont have much money...it wasn't really planned to happen this way, but right now we are at a motel figuring out where to go and how to do this. The doctor said her best Rx is lots of fresh air.

I am wanting to build my own house, but need a solid temp house in the meantime. We looked at the Tiny houses and they fit the bill, but the ones I seen were more than I am willing to pay for a temp house.
I do want to build a round house with stucco/haybale...maybe a combo of other things.
How can I get building materials for free or cheap?

Any advice on buying land for permiculture in the US? what to look for? what to avoid? Preferably I would like alot of land, some meadow some forested. I am a happy loner and dont like neighbors anywhere nearby.

As for me, I am an autistic fiber artist and I thrive in nature and a simple life. I also spin art yarns and create art batts for art yarns and I hope to have a sustainable, crueltry-free fiber farm. Fiber art is my passion like water to a person in a desert. Art is my sanity. Nature is my refuge.

Also I do better in regions where there is a colder climate, but I want to live in the boondocks which means no snow plowed roads which is the catch. How do permies manage snow in colder regions?
I like a long driveway so no one can see my house from the road, but in snowy climates, that is a major hassle. Should I get a small tractor with a snow plow attachment which can be used for other things on the homestead or should I just get a snow ski machine thingie and forget plowing? Can you adapt a snowplow on a 4-wheeler? I know permies who park at the foot of their driveway, then snow ski to the house which worked well for them.

We are pretty much a clean slate at this point as our house was a rental and we been out of the lease for a year.

However we both have disabilities, me with autism, Mom with multiple mobility issues and chronic illness. I realize that if I do a fiber farm, it will have to be small so that I can manage it myself. I also know the core basics about organic gardening and have raised sustainable happy chickens. I wished I could have free ranged them, but there were alot of neighborhood wild dogs, so we built a chicken fortress and they did well.

I am very interested in silkworm farming as a cash source although Mom watched a youtube how-to video and squealed, THIS IS NOT MY IDEA OF FARMING!!
but but but, I love spinning silk, dont mind bugs, and its one of the easiest ways to generate income with very little start up costs

Also wind power..... I been watching these big mammoth wind towers and to me, it just defies logic. If the idea is to produce energy of something spinning around....WHY do they make wind towers out of huge hunks of metal. I was watching a field of little lawn pinwheels and those things could fly so fast you couldn't see the blades on 8mph winds. Am I missing something here? Is there any alternative to this behemoth wind energy source.

And lastly I see alot of great super cheap alternative energy/permiculture technology being used in third world countries, how can I access these in the US. Our income is below the poverty line in most states and there is alot of third world conditions in parts of the US. How can we make these technologies available to the poor here.

Well I need to get to bed, long day.

Jojo






 
David Livingston
steward
Posts: 3558
Location: Anjou ,France
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So many questions and everyone of them with the answer it depends
But first where do you live what area? or where do you want to live ?
As for silkworms you will need to grow mulberrys lots of mulberrys and that takes time . So its a long term plan . So having silkworms and a mulberry jam/jelly operation might not be a bad idea.
Or have you thought about sheep? lots of advice on this site
As for developing tech check out rocket mass heaters on this site
Windmills -its down to economics and where the wind is . The cost of one big engine is less than lots of little ones for the same energy output and the wind is more constant the higher you are

David
 
Judith Browning
Posts: 5907
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
365
bike chicken fungi trees urban woodworking
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Hi, JoAnna, welcome to permies! I can feel your enthusiasm jumping off the page and I think you have come to the right place for some great ideas!
It might be good to post some of your specific questions in the appropriate forum for that particular subject in order to get some better focus on the answers.

best of luck to you and your mom!
 
Renate Howard
pollinator
Posts: 755
Location: zone 6b
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Join forums for hair sheep, fiber, etc. and learn all you can from them now. I know someone who raises angora goats in Maine and she's always looking for shearing helpers during the season. Some may be looking for lambing season helpers too, especially if they get a lot of bottle babies. I understand you're a loner, but you might actually find a WWOOF position that would appeal to you, especially since some of the fiber artists I know of are getting up there in age and can't handle some of the more demanding tasks.

I raised silkworms before. It took a LOT of leaves for the 200 or so I had. I can't imagine doing it for enough to make a whole skein of yarn, tho blending it with other fibers might be nice.

If you want to do that, look into coppicing mulberries. It could be a dual-purpose planting - goats also really like mulberry leaves and fruit, and tree leaves are better for them than grass. In fact you could start now, learning how to propagate mulberries from some growing as weed trees in your area. The plants are easy to identify once you realize the leaves have two forms, the young tree form and the older tree form.
 
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