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Permie Orchard : Startup costs?

 
William James
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Hello Stefan,
First of all thanks for everything you're doing.

You mentioned Mollison's phases of abundance. He suggested you could start with 2-5 acres and work with 800 dollars (probably need to calibrate that to current value/currency) and 300 plants representing some 240 species and 70 or so varieties.

Could you shed some light on how one goes about starting and what is needed to work with that amount of space (2-5 acres)? I've experienced a lot more heartache in this space and the results are much less inspiring on much less land (we have both a 1000 meters and 2.5 acres). We're trying to go with seeds and cuttings and young nursery stock as much as we can but it is very difficult to grow the seed, propogate the cutting, or even find seed/nursery plants at a decent price.

Thanks,
William
 
Stefan Sobkowiak
permaculture orchardist
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William James wrote:Hello Stefan,
First of all thanks for everything you're doing.

You mentioned Mollison's phases of abundance. He suggested you could start with 2-5 acres and work with 800 dollars (probably need to calibrate that to current value/currency) and 300 plants representing some 240 species and 70 or so varieties.

Could you shed some light on how one goes about starting and what is needed to work with that amount of space (2-5 acres)? I've experienced a lot more heartache in this space and the results are much less inspiring on much less land (we have both a 1000 meters and 2.5 acres). We're trying to go with seeds and cuttings and young nursery stock as much as we can but it is very difficult to grow the seed, propogate the cutting, or even find seed/nursery plants at a decent price.

Thanks,
William

William if I remember Mollison suggests you start in your zone 1 around the house. There you plant your first 300 plants. Yes it is in 1980 ish dollars. Probably closer to $3,000 today. You don't bother with the rest of the area just focus your attention, energy and $$ on that initial zone 1 planting. Get those 300 plants going as they will be your mother plants to extend to all the rest. You will sacrifice yield productivity of these plants so they yield more plants (divisions, cuttings, scions, and in some cases seeds to plant out). You also evaluate how they perform. Easy enough with 300 plants close by not so easy for 30,000 plants on several acres.
Evaluate your resources every year: mulch material, propagation material, $$, energy, time. Be realistic about how much you can extend your area every year. It's always better to extend smaller than you can handle and have great success than to bite off more than you can chew and see disappointments all around. You NEED SUCCESS to fuel Your ENERGY. It seems like you took too big of a bite. Pull back and focus on your immediate area and do it really well. You may find you really don't need most of your land and will be totally satisfied doing less on less area and getting great results.
I realized while harvesting one day that one branch of a tree had a lot of fruit. We measured: so we got 1 bushel of apples (40 pounds) off one branch, and only 20 pounds off ALL THE OTHER branches. Pause to reflect. That led me down the path of learning to train trees from the French and French pruning techniques.
Result: it's not how many trees you have, but how much you get from the trees with a given amount of work that counts.
I can't recommend enough, get the film, study it. Don't just watch it. There's a whole lot packed into 2 hours. Almost 20 years, so it's info dense.
Take great care of your plants while they are young. We plant 500 shrubs in a relaxed morning with 2 people and get 80% survival. Total cost 8 man-hours and a bottle or 2 of rooting hormone. That's it. That one trick will save you THOUSANDS in plants!!! Get the film.
 
Luke Vaillancourt
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Ahh great stuff, keeps my motivation running high!
 
William James
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Stefan Sobkowiak wrote:Get the film.


I just got it. Thanks!
William
 
Stefan Sobkowiak
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William James wrote:
Stefan Sobkowiak wrote:Get the film.


I just got it. Thanks!
William

William as someone said today ''It's the best $25 I invested in a long time". If you don't get at least double your investment back in value, contact me I'll reimburse you personally.
 
Andrew Mateskon
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William James wrote:
Stefan Sobkowiak wrote:Get the film.


I just got it. Thanks!
William


What is the name of the film?
 
Andrew Mateskon
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Oops, never mind. Welcome Stefan!
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://stoves2.com
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