christopher Sommers wrote:I want to start now building friendships and networks throughout this region and neighboring places so that we can help each other learn, grow, and adapt. Recently I have been thinking about Youtube and how I love watching people in warmer climate zones showcase their food forests but hardly anything is shown about our incredibly diverse region..... I wish I had you as a neighbor because I would love to learn how to do those things!
Hello friend, I have been looking for the same for some time! My homeland is a particular(-ly rural) region where VA meets NC at the edge of the mountains. Think Floyd VA, most folks in these communities have heard of that. Anyway I started traveling to Florida 3 years ago for love (I'm now 22, her 47) and took it as the opportunity of a lifetime to ingrain myself deeply into the network and activities there in permaculture; and found my love of herbalism. What drives me now is mixing the two to the fullest possible extent, and making the most of every resource we have from plants and ecosystems, to technological materials/systems, but most importantly communities. If we as this more "cooperative" mind and culture are going to continue to grow and influence as we have we need to get our act together and organize to support one another.
What I'm facilitating, like many others are, is a transference of knowledge and highly localized/specialized goods such as medicine, food, technological manufacturing/scavenging, as well as old-fashioned honest support; across broad yet particular areas. Growing and living are very different in the mountains than they are in Florida, yet the experience I gained there and through those connections is fueling creativity here at home even more.
I agree that Appalachia has, perhaps, the highest to rise of anywhere in the country. (I own literature on the subject)
Personally I have spent the last ~5 years studying several properties in my region of the mountains. Fall and late summer this year we've begun ramping up activities such as sowing and maintaining endangered, wild-simulated forest medicinals, starting trees from seed and bare roots, improving garden beds and installing key perennials to maintain it while providing "something for nothing", importing organic matter, working with water, maintaining existing forest. I have lists of plants native and introduced to each area, something I like to do where-ever I visit.
Something I don't see here is businesses, there are next to no permaculture installation services, not enough consultants OR herbalists/medicine-makers. All are up-and-coming, and I think in time we'll find more like myself who used one or two of these businesses to fuel others. I find that embracing the full breadth of passions is what keeps them alive and helps them grow.