Galen Young

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since Mar 14, 2017
out in the woods of Maine
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Recent posts by Galen Young

Casawndreale Wohler wrote:My husband is ex military and I am a retired nurse..looking to be apart of a community...as I'm sure you know he has excellent survival skills and I'm a professional homemaker, lol..just want to get away from drama and begin our lives peacefully.



Since you are a 'retired nurse' I suspect that you will do fine, because you will always have your pension to carry your family.

I am retired military. My pension and healthcare coverage are crucial to rural living. We see a lot of people who live here without a pension or healthcare coverage, and it can be very difficult for them.

People are able to grow veggies and sell them at market, produce goat milk soaps and cheeses and may earn 4 or 5 thousand dollars each year, which is more than enough to cover property taxes, firewood, and most stuff. But raising children can be difficult on that level of income, if you dont have healthcare coverage.

Welcome to Maine.

:)
1 week ago

Greg Martin wrote:Forgot to mention, Maine also just passed a law making it easier to legally build tiny homes.



I have been following the discussion on the BDN.

The majority of townships in Maine have never restricted 'tiny homes' because they simply do not enforce any building codes.

What this new law does is it enacts building codes to enforce on 'tiny homes'. My township will continue it's non-enforcement in either case.

:)
3 weeks ago
Maine is a great state for homesteading.

We are located in the Southern half of Maine as well, just a hop North of Bangor.

Land is cheap, taxes are low, opportunity abounds.



3 weeks ago
For working outside I like to wear a straw 'cowboy-style' hat. They were common among farm-workers when I was a child on a farm in Southern California. Today I live in Maine, they are not a common sight in this area. I found them on-line at a party supply place asking $12 for 18 hats. To me they are so cheap, that I dont care if one gets ruined. Sometimes a wind gust will carry one fo these hats away from me.  15 years after buying a box of them, and I still have 10 left in the box.

In Winter I mostly wear black wool knit 'watchcaps'. I got used to them while serving on Active Duty. They work well at keeping your head warm.
3 weeks ago
My asparagus are only 6 years old.
3 weeks ago

Nicole Alderman wrote:A quick google search of "'Snakeroot farm" brings up http://www.snakeroot.net/farm/index.shtml as the first result, and right there at the top of the page is a picture of a Tom. I can only assume this is the Tom that Galen mentioned.



There's some lovely pictures of the farm there, too!



Thank you, Galen, for sharing with us about Tom and his farms!



Yes that is Tom.

I have links to the MOFGA programs too:

http://www.mofga.org/Programs/FarmApprenticeships/tabid/502/Default.aspx

http://www.mofga.org/Programs/JourneypersonProgram/tabid/228/Default.aspx

http://www.mofga.org/Programs/OrganicFarmerLoanFund/tabid/1058/Default.aspx

1 month ago
I see a lot of older farmers whose children do not want the farm. Those 'children' live in cities, they have their own homes, careers, they are becoming empty-nesters as their children striking out on their own.

If a farmer wants the farm to continue, they need a new generation of farmer to take it over. They WANT a home to live in so long as they are alive. But clearly they can no longer work the farm.

I have attended a few workshops on 'Trans-generational transfers of farms'.



Also some farms here in Maine 'seed'.

I have a friend named Tom. He started a farm called 'Peacemeal Farm'. He gathered apprentices and taught them how to operate that farm. Tom formed a partnership with those apprentices as partners, then he sold the farm to the partnership. The Farm Manager there is Mark [also a friend of mine].

Then Tom moved on and started a second farm. Once the second farm became sustainable, He gathered some apprentices and taught them how to operate that farm. Tom formed a partnership with those apprentices as partners, then he sold the farm to the partnership.

Today Tom operates his fourth farm, it is called 'Snakeroot farm'. He is taking in apprentices, again in the hope that they will partner to take it over from him. As these folks are working together and he tries to get them to form a partnership. When a group congeals [it may take a number of years, and changes of personnel] then they sign a contract, buy him out, and Tom goes and buys fresh land to start another farm on.  Tom is an old hippy, he started doing this in the 70s. He forms off-grid organic / sustainable farms.  I doubt he has ever had much money. His mission in life is starting up farms. There are methods of becoming a farmer that do not require much upfront cash.




Also keep in mind that MOFGA over-sees an Apprenticeship / Journeyman program for N.E.

Anyone who is interested in becoming a farmer [on-grid or off-grid] can apply to any MOFGA farm to apprentice. I have even been approached by college kids asking to apprentice over the summers on my farm. Over 100 farms in Maine take in apprentices every year.

If you stay for a season and decide you like it, you get your name on the MOFGA listing. Then rotate around to different farms each season, so you get more rounded. As a Journeyman, they can place you on a farm for a year, in a Farm Manager position for you somewhere. After that they have a network to match you up with your own land.

Every year we see new farms starting up here in Maine.

1 month ago
I grew-up on a conventional Ag farm and I have siblings that are still inconventional Ag.

I made the shift to small-scale off-grid organic 'hippy' farming, in a state where the number of farms is increasing each year. I think there is a real future for small-scale organic farming.
3 months ago

... So I’ll ask you folks with the practical experience, is there much hope for storing enough electricity to depend on it for several months when ‘new’ p.v. electricity would be scant?



I am in Maine, so I am not as Northern as you, but I am Northern as compared to much of the US.

I am able to depreciate all of my Solar Power expenses on my Income Tax filings over a 7-year period. That means that every penny is a write-off on my taxes. For me the break-even point can never exceed beyond 7-years.

4 months ago
Good luck

We are 12 years down that path here.
4 months ago