Wilson Newman

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since Nov 10, 2014
My name is Wilson Newman, I live in Winchester, Illinois, a small town about 50 miles west of the state capital. I've been interested in forest gardening and sustainable farming since 2010, when I graduated college with a degree in Historic Preservation and was looking toward what I really wanted to do with my life. I've worked in museums and historic sites and various jobs like substitute teaching and landscaping, but my dream is to create a sustainable farm on my family's original homestead from 1830. The property has a large house built in 1894 with 5 acres of surrounding lawn, 61 acres of field, currently being rented out to corn and soy bean farmers, and 30 acres of hay field and timber. I have access to many of the "edges" of these fields and inside the timber. In the future I would like to design a large forest garden, and possibly have a commercially viable organic orchard (designed with rows for easier picking). I have a lot to learn and I hope to be a part of the Permies community and to get and give ideas! I welcome messages and contacts, send me a note!
Winchester, IL (West Central)
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Recent posts by Wilson Newman

Hello, I built a new seed starting system this year and so far it's working great. I've used a wood frame with a 4 foot shop light and sunny windows in the past, but I acquired an adjustable shelf and 5 more shop lights for free this winter. I bought adjustable light hangers for very cheap from amazon (lord forgive me, but they're so easy) and I've expanded my seedling capacity tenfold. For the shop lights, I use one "daylight" 6500K bulb and one regular bulb, these are T12 48inch. I read that it doesn't really matter, but using both a "red" and a "blue" bulb provides a wider spectrum of light. I purchased a heating pad this year, and I'm amazed how much faster my seeds are sprouting. I had broccoli sprouting within a day! I keep a light on this area with my wood frame light so my seedlings don't start stretching out to find the sun. Hopefully next year I can get turn the 60+ windows I've collected into a respectable greenhouse! Good luck!

Greetings! I have a very specific question. I remember reading from one of the permaculture masters about using two iron pots, putting animal bones in one with a filter in between, and getting some kind of smelly gunk from them to wipe on your trees to protect them from animals. Can anyone point me in the right direction? Heck it might've even been Mr. Wheaton. Thanks for any help you can give and happy spring!
2 years ago
Justin Snyder: Where did you happen to source some of your trees from? I've been thinking about using Martin Crawford's seed supply but I don't have much experience in stratification and propagating. I'd love to find some of the rarer plants as live roots for cheap.
2 years ago
I'll figure out how deep it is. I wouldn't want it plumbed into the house, the well is sufficient for now, but having a place to store rainwater for the garden would be ideal. I'll reply back soon.
3 years ago
Here's a better idea of what I have, the water for the house is pumped from where the hand pump is sitting. That little hole near the porch is where the cistern is, it's not very wide but seems very deep.

3 years ago
Greetings! I live in an old house with the main well next to the house; I've recently found a cistern that is in a perfect position to capture the water off of much of the roof. The cistern is right next to the well, I was wondering if anyone had any idea why it would be in this position, but the really important question is: what would be an effective way to use this cistern for pumping water for the nearby garden. I can figure out how to get the water in, but I need help getting the water out. Any ideas?

Attached is a diagram of the area.
3 years ago
I wish I knew German! Still the pictures and plans speak volumes, thanks for sharing!
4 years ago
I know this isn't exactly what you asked for but this is my favorite resource for vegetable and herb companion plantings.

Midwestern Permaculture offers a free pdf booklet on tree guilds.

Graph paper is my favorite tool for designing, and Google Sketch-up is great for a basic computer aided design program.
4 years ago