Kim Goodwin

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since Jan 27, 2014
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Native of Oregon, misses the forests, but now staying warm and dry in the desert.
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Recent posts by Kim Goodwin

Leora, I see what you are saying.  I didn't realize it was that simple - albeit the huge challenge seems to be having enough land on which to do this sort of grazing.  

Where I'm moving is desert grassland and mesquite that would take a year to regrow, so that would require a huge area to rotate only a few animals.  We bought 77 acres, but even that couldn't support many sheep or goats.  It sounds like moving a small amount of animals wouldn't have the effect he's after, as it requires more animals to see results..? Maybe we'll stick with ducks.  

Very interesting. Thanks for breaking it down like that for me.
4 days ago
I'm confused and could use the help of more knowledgeable minds!

So Geoff Lawton talks about goats being a big problem in re-greening desertified areas.  As I understand it, the animals are eating more than the land can regenerate in green growth. This seems easy to demonstrate, as it's all around me.

Alan Savory has also demonstrated regenerating low-rainfall South African grasslands by using more animals in a special grazing pattern.  Here's a video and transcript for those who haven't heard of him: Alan Savory TedTalk on Reversing Desertification in African grasslands

So what is the difference in the situations they are working in?  Do the S. African grasslands have more clay in their soil (hence the red?), versus a more sandy soil that can't hold water as easily?  Does the rain fall in different patterns (which might allow for more soil activity spread over the year)?  Is it a combo, or something totally different?

I imagine the soil composition would make a huge difference.  It occurred to me that if Lawton is working in areas that have both low clay and almost no humus - very sandy soil, that his approach would require building the humus content first before it could be stable enough to support animals. But I'm wondering how to know when you can use the animal method, versus when that won't work.

I'm sure someone out there knows!  :-)
5 days ago

Fred Klammt wrote:I wish there was a USA version of 'retro-suburbia' and an organization that would support that.

I would say there is an organization like that... at least it's attempting to be.  It's the Transition Town movement.  Transition Town Network

Transition Town groups have started in most major US cities, as well as quite a few towns on the west coast.  Here is the map for finding a Transition Town group near you: Transition Town finder and map

And there is even a forum for Transition Towns in Permies: Transition Towns forum

And within the organization was once a sub-grouping for Transition Streets.  Maybe someone will start it again after starting their own street permaculture like in the video above?  Based on the notes, the way they were going about it doesn't seem anywhere as dynamic as how Shani Graham and her partner did.  

In the notes of how the Transition Street groups worked, it seemed focused more on encouraging neighbors to change their behaviors to more eco-conscious ones - and that would get really annoying to me.  Rather than building things or events that would unite and serve one's neighborhood, and leading by example.  Transition Streets - sub-movement (not currently active as of March 2019)

Our local chapter Transition Town Joshua Tree is not big, but does organize group meetings and events periodically.  And they are promoting permaculture here is this very arid desert region.  I think Transition Towns are a potential start if someone wants an organizational framework from which to share skills and ideas with others.  But it will still be up to individuals to act within their own neighborhoods, of course.

That said, I think that the approach done in the video above - neighbors working with neighbors - will end up being more effective overall.  It's as localized as one gets and all it takes is one initial organizer who is able to develop good relationships with neighbors.  That would be more my style since I'm quite tired of groups, organizations, and committees.  haha   But the concepts could be combined and I can see how someone could use Transition Town groups as a forum or teaching venue to help develop neighborhood-sized groups across the US.  Someone just needs to do it, document it, and share it so others can see how to repeat it.
5 days ago
The title is "Take a street and build a community: Shani Graham at TEDxPerth" as found on Youtube.  I watch a lot of community building and permaculture videos, and this is the best story I've found so far.  Well worth the twenty minutes!  It is very fun and inspiring to hear about.  One of my favorite quotes from the presenter, Shani Graham:

We had very little money, even less permission...

I'd love to hear peoples thoughts on this topic!
1 month ago
We didn't explore other areas, we liked what we found. We were looking for a remote area, so didn't explore the less remote ones with any sense of living there.

So I don't know the other regions.  I think Wayne Mackenzie is one who knows other areas of SE Arizona.  Not sure who else is out here, but if you look in the desert SW forum topics I think you can find more people.

I will note that Bisbee is a super cute town, but seems to be very polluted around it.
2 months ago
I believe Greenlee county, AZ, may have the owner-build option as well. I only found Greenlee as another possibility to Cochise in AZ - however I never bothered to find the documentation on the planning site because we ended up buying in Cochise.

In CA, the owner build option is only in a few counties, and it's VERY restrictive.  Size and other considerations.  I forget the counties... it my be Inyo, the ones I read about were in eastern CA.  You could only build a tiny house in the county I read the details for.

Neat thing about Greenlee county, it's the location of a Mexican Wolf reintroduction.

Is Hempcrete so hard to get approval with?  Or are there other considerations you have (like avoiding the hassle!)?

In Cochise, Portal, AZ is very nice if you like remote.  Really cool, in-tact community. Not the cheapest area, though.
2 months ago
I second Seckel.  They are exquisite, like juicy little honey balls.

Asian pears, we grew two varieties, they are also delicious.  Though most people only try them fresh, they are actually quite good dried in slices like apples, or in pear sauce (skin on works if you have a powerful blender).

If you can find a true winter pear - that's a pear that has to be harvested in late fall before a major freeze, then kept and ripened indoors for several weeks - these can be fantastic, some akin to a seckel, some to a really delicious comice or bartlett.  When you harvest a winter pear, it will be rock hard and inedible, yet the size of the fruit will be fully developed.  They can be huge types bigger than a large apple, or tiny pears like a Secklel, russet or clear skin.  They are quite unique.

Most of the winter pears I've had were in my parent's orchard, where they have two seed-grown trees, likely offspring from the bartlett orchard that still partially stands.  These winter pears would stretch our pear season into late Dec/early Jan.  Delectable.
2 months ago
My husband just said that the dog Jingle Bells one is the worst for him, and then the 12 days of Christmas - in any version.  He also said, "The 12 days  song is basically the Christmas version of '100 Bottles of Beer on the Wall'".  ha!
2 months ago
Jason makes a point above.  Which is why I'd like to plug Baker Creek Seeds, and their heirloom sweet corn varieties.  Here's a link to their current corn listings, where I counted 7 or so sweet varieties:

They have a gorgeous corn selection...  beautiful varieties with lots of genetics to play with.
5 months ago
Lung problems have been a big deal for me.  Something I've learned - our bodies do most of their really valuable healing at night, particularly when sleeping, and according to traditional Chinese medicine, at around 10pm is optimal.  

So one things seem to make a big difference with lung stuff, in my experience - creating a "clean room" where you sleep.  Medically speaking, a true clean room is very hard to create and takes a lot of care and some equipment.  But you can make your own home version by keeping your bedroom very clean, dust regularly, have hard surface flooring if possible, and don't bring shoes, unwashed (like worn today even) clothes, or much of any outside stuff into that room.  Also keeping the door closed, then add filtration of some sort - minimally a HEPA, or if affordable a charcoal based filtration.  If you want to be really careful, you only go in the room after showering, too.  It's also best to not have plants with soil in this room, as molds and such grow in their soil.  I'm not against plants in the house in general - just not in the clean room. Tillandsias would probably be fine.

This setup can do wonders.  If you are spending 6-8 hours a day (night) resting in your clean room that gives the lungs an body an amazing chance to recover from the day.  Normally I live with the windows open at night especially, but if the outdoor air isn't good for some reason then the clean room method can give my body some delicious recoup time.

Another term for this is a sleep sanctuary.  Here's a really in depth version of how to make one: Biotoxin Journey's Sleep Sanctuary

Oh, and a couple more things... extra Vitamin C helps the lungs, too. People have cured their asthma just with that at times.  Vitamin C and also glutathione can be nebulized: vaporized and inhaled with a nebulizer.
7 months ago