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Buying land, need advice.  RSS feed

 
Travis Schultz
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Posts: 303
Location: South East Michigan Zone 6
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We have had to suddenly start planning to move. This happened before we had saved the nest egg we were planning for.

We found a property that really fits our bill.

7.3 acres with a fixer upper, 2 car detached garage, 2 sheds.
About 3 acres up front of the house, and about an acre of grass ready to turn into garden. 2 large clumps of mature polyculture trees.

It sits on a quiet private road with only 3 other houses on it. Zoned agriculture, and not a chemical farm field within a mile in any direction. All this surrounded by state land, and wildlife sanctuary. Also has a river at the back of the property.

Here's the catch, the back 4 acres flood out twice a year in spring and fall. The river overflows into this. This 4 acres is filled with Russian olive and 5 ft tall grasses, and is extremely rich soil. 

Obviously I have lots of ideas of how I could make this work. Like berms and hugels, wetlands species of edible plants, ducks, pigs when  it's during the dryer months of summer.

But I want to hear what y'all think about it.. we can afford this property without a mortgage and have never come across a more unique property for the price. We LOVE peace and quiet and hate most people so the location couldn't really be any better.

Thoughts?
 
Travis Schultz
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Posts: 303
Location: South East Michigan Zone 6
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Travis Schultz
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Travis Schultz
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Location: South East Michigan Zone 6
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Tyler Ludens
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Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
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If the flooding doesn't affect the land you need for garden and animal areas, I say grab it.  You can use the flood zone for Zone 4 gathering of useful materials, firewood, etc, seasonal grazing, or you can leave it as Zone 5.

One caution - with potential for weird weather events, will worse flooding change things significantly?  Are the house, garden, and animals areas sufficiently high to avoid being flooded even in catastrophic events?

 
David Livingston
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looks good to me , lots of potential
 
Travis Schultz
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Location: South East Michigan Zone 6
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Tyler Ludens wrote:If the flooding doesn't affect the land you need for garden and animal areas, I say grab it.  You can use the flood zone for Zone 4 gathering of useful materials, firewood, etc, seasonal grazing, or you can leave it as Zone 5.

One caution - with potential for weird weather events, will worse flooding change things significantly?  Are the house, garden, and animals areas sufficiently high to avoid being flooded even in catastrophic events?



The house, and annual garden are all above flood level. But in the back where would have animals IF I had animals, would be running the risk of being flooded out. That's why I think ducks would be the only choice. Though they would have a hilltop that will stay dry that they could retreat to if it floods in summer. I hiked it after a really heavy rain and there was zero standing water... but the neighbors have lived there for 12 years and said almosrlt every spring and about half the autumns is basically like having lakefront property... he even took his boat out in it one time.

Another option would be entering the watercress and water chestnut market on wet years.

Also I'm not a big fan of livestock, especially not overwintering anything besides ducks. I can't go on vacation if I have animals... and I like to get away from my responsibilities a couple times a year if the work load allows.

Any ideas as to what trees like wet feet and can take an occasional flooding, in your experience? Not that a Google search couldn't give me a few names, I just want to know if anyone has actual experience growing edible trees in an area with yearly flooding.
 
Tyler Ludens
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This document contains a list of some Michigan trees and shrubs which grow in bottomland:  http://www.fsa.usda.gov/Internet/FSA_File/ccrpcp31.pdf

More mentioned here:  https://mnfi.anr.msu.edu/abstracts/ecology/Southern_hardwood_swamp.pdf

ooops, sorry.  Well, maybe these can help you anyway....

 
Travis Schultz
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Tyler Ludens wrote:This document contains a list of some Michigan trees and shrubs which grow in bottomland:  http://www.fsa.usda.gov/Internet/FSA_File/ccrpcp31.pdf

More mentioned here:  https://mnfi.anr.msu.edu/abstracts/ecology/Southern_hardwood_swamp.pdf

ooops, sorry.  Well, maybe these can help you anyway....



Lol much obliged Tyler. Thank you. Saved me the search time anyway, tried to edit it as I realized it made me sound lazy.
 
Katy Rose
Posts: 29
Location: Ypsilanti, MI (zone 6a)
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Looks lovely, Travis. I don't have advice, but wanted to say hello, because it looks like we're neighbors.
 
Travis Schultz
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Katy Rose wrote:Looks lovely, Travis. I don't have advice, but wanted to say hello, because it looks like we're neighbors.


Looks like your from ypsi? This property is between Ann arbor and jackson.
 
Katy Rose
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Travis Schultz wrote:
Katy Rose wrote:Looks lovely, Travis. I don't have advice, but wanted to say hello, because it looks like we're neighbors.


Looks like your from ypsi? This property is between Ann arbor and jackson.


Yep! We're actually just north of Ypsi, technically in Superior Township. Are you on the Huron? If so, you could kayak to our house.   We're on one of the dammed sections though, so no flooding on our property (it's more like a lake here). I'll be excited to hear what your plans are for your place! We are just getting started. We have some good "zone 1" raised beds for veggies, herbs, and greens, as well as 3 small hugels I built this year. We're getting our garden area (~2/3 acre) fenced soon, and then I want to start planting lots more fruit and nut trees. I am jealous of your lovely floodplain soil, though--we're up a hill and it is like beach sand throughout most of the area we want to plant!

Great to meet another SE Michigan permie!
 
Travis Schultz
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Location: South East Michigan Zone 6
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Katy Rose wrote:
Travis Schultz wrote:
Katy Rose wrote:Looks lovely, Travis. I don't have advice, but wanted to say hello, because it looks like we're neighbors.


Looks like your from ypsi? This property is between Ann arbor and jackson.


Yep! We're actually just north of Ypsi, technically in Superior Township. Are you on the Huron? If so, you could kayak to our house.   We're on one of the dammed sections though, so no flooding on our property (it's more like a lake here). I'll be excited to hear what your plans are for your place! We are just getting started. We have some good "zone 1" raised beds for veggies, herbs, and greens, as well as 3 small hugels I built this year. We're getting our garden area (~2/3 acre) fenced soon, and then I want to start planting lots more fruit and nut trees. I am jealous of your lovely floodplain soil, though--we're up a hill and it is like beach sand throughout most of the area we want to plant!

Great to meet another SE Michigan permie!



I would have the Parma river in the back. I wish it were the Huron! But I couldn't afford the land if it was lol.
 
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