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Indiana Permies where are you?

 
Posts: 46
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana, USA - Zone 5B
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You mention wanting to take a PDC here in Indiana. If you've never taken one I recommend Geoff Lawton's online course. I took it last summer and it was great! If you have and are looking for something close to home, me too! Even a workshop. I know that Darby Simpson has some workshops. I think he is down in Martinsville. http://www.simpsonfamilyfarm.com/

Matt Faulkner wrote:Hello from Westfield! I was very happy to see a forum here for those of us that live in Indiana. We have a small suburban property (roughly .20 acres), but I have been informally studying Permaculture Design and Edible Food Forests and I've caught the bug. I've been gardening for several years now and love it. We have about 250 square feet of vegetable garden space, but this year we planted blueberries, raspberries, strawberries and three fruit trees (Stella Cherry; 4n1 Apple and a Peach). This fall we will be tilling up one whole side of our backyard so that I can plant an Almond tree, Plum Tree, Nectarine tree, two Pear trees (Bartlett and Asian) and two grapes around an arbor. I'm contemplating planting a mulberry tree and two sour cherry trees behind our fence as well. Next Spring, I will be planting some perennial vegetables (rhubarb, horseradish and asparagus) as well as all of the other shrubs (Nanking Cherry, Goumi and Currants) to go along with the Comfrey, herbs and wildflowers. I'll probably plant a few more blueberry bushes as well since my two girls love them! I built an herb spiral for my wife this summer and she is really looking forward to using it next spring. I'm very interested in learning more about any PDC courses here in Central Indiana as well as learning from all of you. While I will never give up my vegetable garden, I will be converting it to raised beds this fall and next spring as well as utilizing polyculture/companion planting techniques to hopefully create less work and more enjoyment for my family each year. I'm looking forward to attracting wildlife as well as beneficial insects to keep everything in balance. Please offer up any advice you have as I'm still new to this and I'll try to keep everyone updated on our progress while also uploading pictures as time allows.

 
Posts: 41
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Just checking in with the Indiana people. Does anyone have anything new going on? We are on the prowl for property right now so I've put any and all projects that require funding on hold at our current location. I'm ready to get down to business. There's still a lot I've been able to learn about this year including embracing multifunctional elements, integration of rabbits, comfrey, growing vertically to save space and water harvesting. Nothing on the level I'd consider "very efficient" but "better" for sure.

 
Loren Hunt
Posts: 46
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana, USA - Zone 5B
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my wife and i have been planning out guilds for our fruit trees - fall sheet muching, cover cropping and spring planting. we are also very interested in good annual cover crops for over winter in zone 5b. any suggestions welcome!
 
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I'm in Evansville and new to all of this. I have a very small city lot. I want some raised beds in the back yard. I dont trust the local soil,so this seems to be the way to go. I w ill just start with some basics in them. I plan to put the beds in this month and plant them in the spring. I need some feed back on plants. Its hard to find many heirlooms around here. Where can I find some in the state, or online that I can trust?

I have always been up cycling, just didn't have a name for it back in the day. We have rain barrels and recycle. Thats as far as we have come so far.

My husband and I would like to move to our own paradise someday. We just can't do it yet, so we are working with what we have at this moment. Any input you have is appreciated.
 
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Well this is good news INDIANA PERMIES! I hope I can connect with others from Central Indiana. I have an old farmhouse on 1.93 acres on the east side of Indy. WE call it Phoenix Urban Farm (though its not searchable yet on Google).I am hosting a Rocket Stove Workshop this fall. Hope to build off grid heating, water and energy. Also interested in using the space to build Tiny Houses. check out my activity partner post on Craigslist for pics and developmental thoughts. I'm a little frustrated with the gardening aspect of things as the squirrels at the apples, grapes and corn I planted. There is a huge mess of green beans that need some TLC.
Barn-CarriageHouse.jpg
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BARn and Carriage House
 
Posts: 63
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
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Hi!!!

I missed this forum when I joined here. I usually just ask questions in other forums. My home located on the south side of Indianapolis. We've been here 15 years and the corn/soybean fields all around us turned into housing developments. I started flower gardens, then I morphed into wildlife habitats and now for the last couple of years I want to work on building a mini food forest. We live on a little over a half acre. I'm glad to see other people in the area interested in permaculture. I think my neighbors just think I'm weird.
 
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We just bought a property on the northside of Brownsburg, about an acre. Anyone with frugal ideas on how to start would be appreciated.

Indywheeler@gmail.com
 
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Southern Marion County (Southside Indianapolis)
 
Posts: 20
Location: Fort Wayne, Indiana (USA)
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Designing even a small property can be a challenge, but still a lot of fun and is probably one of the best investments you can make in your future. Basically you'll want to know these FIVE things before you begin building anything:

1) Sun angle throughout year
2) Prevailing wind direction for each season
3) A list of plants and animals that thrive on and interact with the property
----I like to get very detailed with a custom taxonomy key, but that's because I'm a horticulture nerd and a half
4) Contours of land and sources of water runnoff - ON and OFF the property (where does it come in, where does it leave?)
5) Check with local authorities about collecting rainwater, raising small animals, building greenhouses, AND UTILITY LINES ON THE PROPERTY


After you have this information very well documented and organized, you may begin the preparations! Intermediate steps following the main 5 will include: WATER HARVESTING (muy importante), soil testing, garden design, and processes planning (you have the food, but how to maintain and store it?). Setting it all up is the most time-consuming and work-intensive part, and it can take 2-5 years before any system is stable. However, you'll always have fun new designs to try every year.

REMEMBER: Permaculture design is 100 hours of research and planning / 1 hour of physical labor. Don't rush into it just because you're excited. Permaculture works because of the intelligence of its design, not just because you plant a whole bunch of organic seeds and let chickens roam about pooping on stuff.

Helpful links for you as you begin this awesome journey:

http://www.internationalpermaculture.com/
http://www.geofflawton.com/
http://www.richsoil.com/paul-wheaton.jsp
http://www.motherearthnews.com/
http://midwestpermaculture.com/

 
Posts: 49
Location: Louisville, KY
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I live in Louisville, KY. But I run a small farm across the river near New Albany. Anyone nearby?
 
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Just moved onto 14 acres in SW Indiana (Spencer area). Not much going on yet other than working on housing and observation. We have a nearly complete tiny house that we'll be living in while we renovate the old cabin we're in right now. Won't be doing a whole lot of growing this first year (mostly building soil and doing some zone 1 stuff), but we lucked out a bit as a previous owner gave us a head start with a nice pond, a spring, and a small orchard.
 
Posts: 77
Location: Indiana
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Shannon Foster -

I don't know if you are still active/lurking on here, I have an answer to the heirloom question (others can hear as well .
Tyler Gough with Indy Urban Acres has a lot of varieties of heirloom tomatoes. I got seeds from about 20 varieties from him last year.
I talked with him a month ago and he is going to have over 10 x that many varieties this year.

Keith
 
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Hello fellow Hoosiers!

I began my permaculture journey last year, starting a small homestead/sustainable farm just north of Kokomo, Indiana. I'm on 16 acres of mixed woods and pasture. I've already put in a pretty nice size swale connected to a small pond (yet to hold water). I'm wanting to turn my pasture and some of the woods into a Mark Shepard-style wooded pasture. I'm currently raising pastured chickens, sheep, dairy goats, as well as some American Guinea Hogs that we keep as a breeder pair. My farm's Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/FreebirdFarmHomestead and my instagram account is @freebird_farmer.

I look forward to connecting with some of you on here!
 
Posts: 695
Location: Porter, Indiana
37
trees
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Nice looking farm there Zach. For a year in, it looks like you've been VERY busy. By the way, what breed of sheep are you using?
 
Zach Morris
Posts: 3
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Thanks, John! It's been a lot of work but the results this far have been very encouraging. My sheep flock is a mix of St. Croix, Katahdin and Dorper.
 
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Luke Groce wrote:I live in Louisville, KY. But I run a small farm across the river near New Albany. Anyone nearby?



I live in Jeffersonville, the Fiancé and I are looking to buy land in the area this spring. Not sure what side of the river we are going to go with though. I'm looking forward to getting my PDC certification this year and would like to attend workshops in the area this spring and summer.
 
Posts: 5
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Zach,

Let me know if you need any help on the homestead. I am in Westfield, so only about 45-60 minutes south of you. I am new to Permaculture and live on a small, suburban lot right now, but that hasn't stopped me from working to turn my backyard into a food forest! I have two girls, ages 3 and 5, that love the outdoors and might be of some help to you as well if you need assistance. Anything I can do to get some hands-on experience would be helpful. I am planning to take a PDC in the next couple of years and my family and I have a goal of buying some land in the future so that we can homestead. Let me know if you're interested in some assistance.

-Matt
 
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Major permie newbie in NW IN where steel mills meet farm fields. Looking for good reference for appropriate edible plants for zone 5 in oak/hickory forest. Can anyone recommend a good source?
 
Posts: 1
Location: Indiana
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Hey guys! We're located between Attica and Otterbein Indiana. Seeing all of you from Indiana makes my heart so happy! Sometimes you feel a little alone on your sustainable journey, and this just reassures me we're not, and that other people share our vision!! My husband and I started our homestead late last year. So excited to see what this year has in store for us! And also excited to hear about you guys' journeys.
 
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Good afternoon, Indiana permies!

We're in Fulton County, IN...an hour's drive west of Fort Wayne, an hour's drive southeast of South Bend, approx 100 miles north of Indy. We were blessed with a gift of 2 acres of land from my husband's parents; we bought a mobile home and planted our roots here 7 years ago. We have had some bountiful gardening seasons over the years, and this year we will complete our glass and concrete greenhouse! My hubby is tinkering with home-made wind generation, and we have a small solar array to power the greenhouse. I think we are finally ready to build our straw-bale home (hopefully this summer). We have 3 dogs and 3 cats, 4 grown children and 4 grand kids who keep us young at heart!! We are discussing livestock of some kind - he wants goats, I want chickens...maybe we will just concentrate on the house first and decide the animals later!

I joined this forum to learn from others, and to share what we have learned. I'm happy to be here, and hope to make some good friends!
 
pollinator
Posts: 60
Location: Franklin, Indiana
10
goat dog duck urban chicken
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Hello fellow Hoosiers!

I'm in Franklin, IN and we are looking for land to call our permaculture home. Open to anywhere in the state.

I've completed my PDC as well, so if anyone would like help with design or implementation I'm available to help. I'm building my portfolio and wanting more hands on experience. If you're within an hour or so of me, I'll help you at no charge. Further than that, gas money would be appreciated.
 
Posts: 24
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Saying hi to NWI im in Porter county south of rt 30. Been a long time looker first time poster. I have planted about 14 fruit trees last year and plan to plant about as many this spring. Just learning about gardening and such moved from city where I never had a garden to about 3 acres of area to work with. Looking to plant as many perennial plants and trees that will grow in this area. Anyone here ever grow passion fruit/maypop with success. Or how about jujube. These are kinda fringe for the temperature. Also so you know im a big advocate of STUN. Shear Total Utter Neglect. So none of that pots dragged inside for the winter stuff LOL.
 
Posts: 20
Location: South Bend, Indiana
forest garden solar woodworking
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Brad Cloutier wrote:

I guess I'll be the first to rep the northern part of the state. I'm a real greenhorn at this stuff but I'm in nonetheless. My family and I (7 in all) live in Portage and we are currently looking for some acreage here in the northwest part of the state. I would love to hookup with some locals to work together if needed. Would be nice to have some input from experienced permies also once we get our land.

Peace to you all and go Hoosiers!



South Bend, IN present and accounted for.
I just joined because of the Rocket Mass Heater discussions.
I will probably be around for a while.
 
Posts: 51
Location: Indiana
1
chicken food preservation bee
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I am in Southern Indiana!! We live on 2 wooded acres near Huntingburg, IN, but we bought  a farm just under 50 acres in Charlestown, IN. Charlestown is about 30 min North of Louisville.
Cabin2.jpg
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Our 1830 cabin that sits nearly in the center of our farm, Der Bauernhof.
 
Posts: 3
Location: Southern Indiana
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I'm a fellow Hoosier homesteader.  Nice to know there are more Indiana people on here!  I own a 75 acre farm that is a diamond in the rough, and I'm working on bringing it back to life.  I have huge goals to make it into a self-sustaining farmstead.  Already have lots of fruit trees and canes, cattle, rabbits, and chickens.  Wanting to add bees, more poultry species, pigs, and some milk goats.
 
Julia Wright
Posts: 3
Location: Southern Indiana
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Cori Cox wrote:Just moved onto 14 acres in SW Indiana (Spencer area). Not much going on yet other than working on housing and observation. We have a nearly complete tiny house that we'll be living in while we renovate the old cabin we're in right now. Won't be doing a whole lot of growing this first year (mostly building soil and doing some zone 1 stuff), but we lucked out a bit as a previous owner gave us a head start with a nice pond, a spring, and a small orchard.



Not sure if you're still active on here, but I live just south of Freedom, Indiana--so we are pretty close by.  We are also working on a diamond in the rough.  We bought a 75-acre forgotten farm in November of 2015 and are slowly bringing it back to life.  Just wanted to say, "Hi! Neighbor!"  Ha.
 
Alicia Winkler
Posts: 51
Location: Indiana
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Welcome Julia! Sounds exciting!!
 
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Hi there from Indy! Looking for other Indiana permies/homesteaders and really interested in visiting/working to gain some knowledge/experience before we get our own little piece of heaven to work on. Anyone needing some help?
 
Posts: 9
Location: Indianapolis, IN
2
hugelkultur urban woodworking
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Pax Greene wrote:Hi there from Indy! Looking for other Indiana permies/homesteaders and really interested in visiting/working to gain some knowledge/experience before we get our own little piece of heaven to work on. Anyone needing some help?



Hey Pax! Come on over to Chickadee Gardens, 8425 e 42nd st. We are working on a 2 acre permaculture project and can always use an extra hand.

Cheers,
Nick

P.s. this is the same property Joe Werle posted about two years ago, also called phoenix urban farm
 
Posts: 14
Location: 10a
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Hello!
My two ongoing projects that I fuss over are:

A raised bed hugelculture hybrid. I wanted it to be fallow so I could plant bee friendly annuals and some squash in Nov/Dec for the Spring.
Instead I transplanted some potted cardoons (I am new to cardoons - and one thing not to do to them is pot them) and a curassavica to test the new soil.
I am hoping that the new residents will keep the bed from harboring pests and might finally lead to a crop of cardoons.

Growing a lilac. In my latitude, only one type of lilac grows, and mine is not doing so well. Sigh.

See you in Indiana fairly soon!

Liz
 
pollinator
Posts: 111
Location: South Central Indiana
17
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Hi Loren,

Checking in from Morgantown, about 16 miles north of Nashville, IN.  I've got about 90 acres that I'm planting with native and improved varieties of trees and plants.  Started ten years ago improving the habitat for deer and then decided there were a lot things I like to eat too!  Concentrating on making the place as low maintenance and sustainable as possible.  40 chickens free range about 3 acres.  I've been putting in chestnuts, blackberries, cherries, apples, raspberries, pawpaws, etc.  I love collecting seed from great trees and putting them in the ground.  Looking to sylvo-pasture pigs in a couple of years. Working on an existing year round cold stream so that I can introduce trout. Not sure if it will work, but I'm gonna try.  

It looks like we have quite a few people here in the state.  I'd be up for a pow wow!  It's kinda lonely being a permie sometimes, it be nice to meet other folks.  I'd be up for hosting any kind of get together if folks wanted to do that.
 
Posts: 99
Location: Central Indiana
15
kids books homestead
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Newer member here.  I'm up in Fishers.
 
Posts: 9
Location: Rocky Ripple, IN
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Hello Indiana permies! My love and I are stewards of a half acre in beautiful Rocky Ripple, which is a tiny river town in Indianapolis. We have been observing the land for about a year and doing some tending, mostly removing honeysuckle, garlic mustard and Japanese knotweed.

We started working on the house in late October, which has been/still is our full time job since as it was quite distressed. Hoping we can move in soon and spend more time playing outside in the garden!

While there is still a plethora of plants who are highly successful and bad at sharing (the honeysuckle and knotweed), there are many amazing plants too. Lots of raspberries, a very large pear tree, elderberries and many more. We’ve “cleared” (dug up as many knotweed rhizomes as possible) the knotweed patch and plan to grow an annual veggie garden there with the hopes it will provide competition for the knotweed and keep us on top of weeding out new shoots.

The eventual plan is to phase out the remaining honeysuckle and replace it with a food forest-ish set up with lots of native plants. Currently, we have tons of songbirds and wildlife and I want to maintain and improve habitat for them. I’m learning about herbalism and want to tie in medicinal plants as well. At some point, we probably want bees and chickens, but that’s likely a few years down the road till we get other things more solidly rooted.

I’ve become rather obsessed with the idea of planting the rain with water harvesting earthworks, as well as harvesting rainwater for use in our home.
Again, much of this is still in planning stages, but I am super excited!

I would love to see what other folks are doing on their land if anyone nearby is open to giving a tour of their place. Good to know there are other folks in Indiana working with and for the earth like this!
 
Posts: 17
Location: Shelby IN, USA. Zone 6a
cattle trees homestead
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Hello Hoosiers!

Kiwi here, currently an apartment dweller just outside of NYC. My husband and I are set to close on 60 acres in Shelby county this May! So excited to get there, and a bit overwhelmed with the planting and fencing and house building decisions we'll be making.

To pass the time I've been printing 3d models of the land to mess around with - adding swales and ponds and hedgerows and such.

For now, This is what we're starting with:

Satellite view. The missing chunk with all the houses on it belongs to my mother in law.


3d print of the area from Lidar data. Turns out Indiana is pretty flat.


It is currently made almost entirely of corn.


Creek on the western boundary.
 
Jonathan Ward
Posts: 99
Location: Central Indiana
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That looks awesome.  Are you going to build a house on it or live somewhere close by?

What are your plans for the land?
 
Tansy Arron-Walker
Posts: 17
Location: Shelby IN, USA. Zone 6a
cattle trees homestead
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Jonathan Ward wrote:That looks awesome.  Are you going to build a house on it or live somewhere close by?

What are your plans for the land?



We will be building a home. The reason closing has been delayed until May is to wait on a hearing to make sure we will be allowed to build. Current rough plan for home site is below.


Plans. Oh man. So many plans! Which ones will actually be implemented though...

Initially we're looking to feed ourselves and improve the soil health and diversity of birds/insects/etc. Given there's 60acres of space we'll want more beeves/pigs/chickens for pasture improvement than we can possibly eat on our own, so if all goes well we'll be looking for ways to monetize the excess. We're both software infrastructure engineers, so we're looking to collect a bunch of data and build systems that require a minimum of ongoing labor (hence permaculture design). We can work remotely while we're getting things set up, though it seems likely I'll end up farming more or less full time.

Looking to set up a silvopasture situation (a la Mark Sheppherd, Grant Schultz) to include horses, beef, dairy, pigs, broilers, laying hens and ducks. Tree crops to include nuts, fruit, coppice wood, and animal fodder crops.

Forest garden sufficient for family use.

My mother in laws property has a bunch of springs on it. Puts out something like 60gallons a minute at 55*f year round. That water currently runs through a tile under our land and discharges into the creek on the western boundary. I want to make that into a stream/trout pond/wetland situation instead.

Mushrooms in the wooded areas.

Loads more trees (especially on boundaries - we are entirely surrounded by conventional cash crops, so need a bit of buffer space) Will certainly set up a nursery for our own use and may sell seedlings/whips as well. (My dad is an arborist and would love to run a nursery again. Still trying to convince my folks to come join us out there.)

I recently read Dirt: The Erosion of Civilization and Growing a Revolution: Bringing Our Soil Back to Life (both by David Montgomery. Highly recommend both) and have been inspired to consider setting up a demonstration farm - a couple large blocks of cash crops to compare conventional treatment with Gabe brown style no-till/cover cropping/mulch/animal impact. I'm still not sure if I'll do this, but I'd love to help farmers in our area be more profitable and preserve our farmland and it seems like demonstration blocks are remarkably efficient at spreading the good word.

Currently researching whether being certified organic is useful or completely cost prohibitive.

I'm sure there are more things I'm missing, but I think you get the general idea: Feed ourselves and local extended family. Improve soil quality and overall health of the land. Depending on how that works out, potentially farm for profit.
 
Jonathan Ward
Posts: 99
Location: Central Indiana
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Awesome.  When it comes time to plant I've had success starting oaks from nuts ..3 in my yard and 3 more in pots.  They take a long time to mature but nothing like a tree that can live almost 600yrs.
 
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Hi! We're in Wolcott. We have our cart before our horse, as it were. We didn't have enough income to feed our family well, but we had forty-odd acres. Weighing our assets, and believing any land os adequate into itself, we bought some assorted animals (cows, pigs, sheep, geese, already had chickens because store eggs are gross).
Unfortunately, we knew nothing about regenerative practices, so much of our operation is more labor intensive than it should be. In fact my gardens' performance was abysmal...and so began the journey.
I discovered deep mulch gardening by various names and started improving my gardens. Then I stumbled on a YouTube channel that opened my world to permaculture and all the cool stuff that goes with it.
Now we're trying to retrofit some of the principles to our farm. Lots of fruit and not trees are going in, and I'd love to mob-stock the animals, but that takes a lot of fence work, so it will have to wait.
In the meantime, can anybody hire me and provide me with a little capital and experience? I'm a reasonably fit lady of 50. Not afraid to sweat or get my hands dirty. You can email me at mawgreenjeenz80@gmail.com.
 
Posts: 2
Location: Northwest Indiana
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I'm in Gary. Only have a traditional city plot. Front and ball yard. I'm slowly getting a garden together in the back. Hope to make the front a butterfly garden.
 
See where your hand is? Not there. It's next to this tiny ad:
Food Forest Card Game - Game Forum
https://permies.com/t/61704/Food-Forest-Card-Game-Game
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