James Cook

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since Jan 10, 2013
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Recent posts by James Cook

Big shout out to user 'S Bengi' for providing me with another mountain of information to absorb via PM. For anyone curious:

Transform 3 acres. for a family of 4
Area A 1 acre food forest, pond/fish, chicken, cabin, top bar beehive
Area B 1 acre silva-pasture. sheep, pond/fish, pheasant, turkey.

Area A
180 trees @ 15ft centers @$25/plant
Build 1 big common area yurt connected to 3 smaller yurts/room.
Plant 25% of the land in N-fixer at 15ft centers. (serbian pea, autumn olive, goumi, silverberrry, seaberry)
Plant 25% of the land with winter fruits (persimmons, pears, apple, jelly palm, etc)
Plant 20% of the land with nuts (Hazelnut, Almond, Chilean Nut, Chestnut, Yellowhorn, Sweet kernel Apricot)
Plant 10% of the land with vines on coppice firewood (Akebia, China Blue, Yam Vine, Grape, Kiwis, Passionflower, Schisandra, Tasmania)
Plant 10% of the land with shurbs
Plant 5% of the land with regular vegetables
Cover 5% of the land with house/etc
Top Bar Hive once a year visit (Aug)
Chicken coop over 3ft pond with fish.

Area B
FoodForest/Cabin is nested inside Pasture
Divide the acre into 4 rotational paddock(300ftx50ft) with living hedgerow (4*300ft+4*200ft+5*50ft).
2250ft at 5ft spacing = 450plants @$2/plant
Plant 4 nut trees one in each paddock
Digg 4 pond for drinking water and fish

Area C
natural forest/firewood/mushroom/hunting/experiments/storage.

So after leaving the road you will walk through a 30?ft natural forest then meet the 1st living fence, after which you will walk through a 50ft pasture, then a second living fence, after which you will walk 100ft to your actual house. its a mirror image to get to the other side of your property.

List of plants Fruit, Nut, Vine, Shurb, Groundcover, Perennial Vegetable, Self seeding Annuals

Apple, Azarole, Cherry, Chinese Haw, Citrus, Cornelian Cherry, Fig, Highbush Cranberry,
Japanese Flowering Plum, Japanese Raisin Tree, Jujube, Korean Bush Cherry, Mayhaw, Medlar,
Mt. Ash, Mulberry, Pawpaw, Peach, Nectarine, A.Pear, E.Pear, Persimmon, Plum, Pomegranate,
Quince, Flowering Quince, Juneberry, Nannyberry, Che

here is a few plant list for your climate


Layout to get 25%-33% N fixer perennial fruit/nut trees.

Fencing to protect cattle from wildlife and to stop cattle from eating living fence.


Here is a pasture list too.
The main thing to remember is that you want 4 types of plants 1.N-fixers, 2.Drymass, 3.Pest control/medicine, 4.Aerating roots
I would plant 7-12 plants in each category.

lamb's quarter
fava bean
sweet clover
landino clover
hairy vetch
black-eyed peas
sun flower
bee balm
pea (pisum arvitiuse)
stinging nettle
maximillian sunflower

20ftx30ft house

Solar Dehydrator
Solar Cooker
Solar Oven
Solar Water heater
Solar Heat
Solar Ventilation
Solar Electric

Composting Toilet
Greywater rain garden.

10 years ago
Hello everyone! I'm still fairly new to this site, so forgive me if I am somehow in violation of a rule.

My fiance and I recently bought 3 acres in NY. The area in which our land resides, luckily isn't zoned at all! I can literally build whatever I want however I still must follow NY State building codes if I see fit to call the property my residence. There are certainly a lot more than I care to suffer through. Thus bringing me to my post!

About the only thing that I was able to find relevant to my situation was that I need 6 inch walls. Now I understand that if I don't call it my home, and give it some other name such as a garage or similar, I won't have to abide by these rules however, I think that because of where I'm at geographically, it might make sense to build to spec so that I'm not hating myself every year when winter rolls through.

So, I'm open to suggestions, preference to those with experience building in the area already however I'm open to anything!

10 years ago
Hello everyone, I just wanted to introduce myself as a new member here. I look forward to adding onto the mountain of information I've already absorbed in the few days spent lurking this site.

My better half an I just purchased 3 acres in Bradford, NY and are eagerly awaiting the build of our shipping container home within the next year. For now, though, it's the research stage! If anyone has any relevant information or experiences other than that which may be found via a quick Google search, it would be much appreciated!

Again, thanks to everyone who's contributed already! You are all so awesome!
10 years ago