Barbara Greene

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since Oct 26, 2009
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fungi trees chicken
Tonasket, WA
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Recent posts by Barbara Greene

Okanogan Permaculture Study Group is having a pot luck gathering on Feb. 13, Monday, 6pm at Peter James' house just North of Tonasket, White House with red trim.
Art Heinemann a local organic farmer will be attending and this past year he built a climate battery greenhouse from plans he purchased from CRMPI's Jerome Osentowski. He will be able to answer questions.
I can add my two cents from my recent visit to Jerome's place last fall where he took my group on a 3 hour tour of his greenhouses and forest gardens.
And for those of us who have yet to build any type of greenhouse, I'll cover Winter Sowing of seeds in recycled plastic milk jugs as " mini greenhouses" for outdoor plant starts, with a big nod to Julie Ashmore who taught me about this technique!
So even tho the sun was out today and our temps got above freezing for a few hours so we're all running around outside without hats and coats---I still think you'll enjoy our meeting and gathering around with fellow local permaculture enthusiasts-- hope to see you at Peter's. Just email me if you need directions:
Stay warm and happy,
3 years ago
Hi Debbie,
I live south of your border in the Okanogan County of Washington state. I bet some of our weather patterns are similar. Our county gets from 14-20" of precip annually a lot in the form of snow.
Although, we just had record setting rains for October (3.4") and it's been very warm for November so far.
Garlic grows wonderfully here hard neck and soft. Plant it in fall.
Trees are great, the Ponderosa Pine are typical and are much more resistant to wild fire (I can attest to that after the worst wild land fires in our state history, burned through our county including my land in 2015).
Saskatoon berry shrubs are native and good to eat, I have read they are being grown commercially in Canada now. They grow great on my land, elderberry shrubs too.
I had some Favas drop seed last year, over winter on their own and come up in my garden this year. But it wasn't very cold last winter, only down to -6F degrees. The lowest temps I have experienced here were a few years ago down to -18F degrees for about 3 days, but generally it stays between -5F and 10F degrees in the winter.
I'm not sure if browsing deer are a problem for you, but they certainly are down here, so trees and shrubs must be protected until they are large enough to withstand munching.
Comfrey is a reliable plant here along with rhubarb, walking onions, stinging nettles, French sorrel, French tarragon, parsley, hops, dill and arugula (both self seed), raspberries and blackberries (more deer protection), strawberries and Jerusalem artichokes aka sun chokes.
That's all I can think of right now that might be there when you returned in the spring. Oh yes cover crops are always good too.
Good luck ! It's sounds like you found a nice piece of land with water ( a huge plus)!
4 years ago
Hi Devin and Elisa:

You are right that we don't meet much during the growing season. Everyone is just too darned busy!  Below is the announcement I sent out to the group a few days ago. If you are interested in attending feel free to call me to get contact info for Isaac who can give you specific directions, I can give you general directions. 509-560-3613

Also, I think maybe Erica did mention you (Devin) as being interested in attending our meetings. Both you and Elisa, can send me your email info, if you wish me to add you to the group email listing that we announce meetings and other info relating to permaculture and organic type farming and gardening.

Mostly, our meetings happen in the general Tonasket area, but because there are also members who live closer to Omak and Okanogan, I try to have meetings in that area once-in-a-while, and this meeting is going to be one of those.

Don't worry if you can't make it to the Dec. one, I will be scheduling others during the winter.

Glad you are in the area and have an interest in Permaculture!

I look forward to meeting you both sometime soon.

Barbara Greene

Hi Everyone,

Isaac and Kirstie Bickford have kindly offered to host our Permaculture pot luck meeting at their house.  The address is 2170 Burton Ave. Okanogan, WA. You may remember it is the previous home of the Darleys.

It will be Monday, Dec. 5th, 2016, at 6pm, a pot luck, and we will talk about low tech but effective ways of irrigating tree plantings and gardens.

I can also talk about my recent visit to Jerome Osentowski's place high in the Rocky Mountains (7200 feet) and his Forest Garden Greenhouses, aka climate battery greenhouses.

Feel free to bring a friend or pass this message along to anyone who you think might be interested to attend.

Also, if you no longer wish to be on this email list, please just let me know.

Thanks and see you in December!

Barbara Greene

4 years ago
I just contributed to your work, I hope you reach your goal and get this film produced.  It's such an important topic and there needs to be much more thoughtful discussion regarding our human approach.
Thank you for dedicating your time to this!
Thanks Dave!
We had a gulley washer event yesterday!
I'll go back out today with renewed searching eyeballs!
4 years ago
Thanks David and Laurie for bringing up the topic of Morels.
I'm also very interested in black Morels. Since the big Okanogan Complex wild fire swept over our land last August, I've been looking forward to the small silver lining of finding them on my land.
I started in early spring, but nothing!
Some woods wise friends came and looked last week and found a handful, of kinda dried up ones ( but still edible).
My question is, do you know if deer or other animals eat Morels?
I'm thinking perhaps I had too much competition...
Thanks for coming to the Permies forum.
4 years ago
Having access to land is exciting! Making plans and even planting or building is hard to resist. It feels like there is a mountain of stuff to do and little or no time to do it in.
Remember Mollison's words, "protracted and thoughtful observation rather than protracted and thoughtless labor"...
Get out on your land in every season first.
Watch and observe what goes on there.
It really is best to spend a whole year living on your place making all those observations, taking notes and posing questions about what's going on there, maybe drawing some conclusions.
You will be amazed how much you learn and by contrast how little you knew in the beginning!!
You may avoid some expensive (in time and/or money) mistakes, by taking your time.
If your in laws have lived near by for a long time, engage them in telling you what they've learned about the land and what they've noticed.
You must get to know your land.
In the meantime, read everything you can not only about permaculture but other related areas like Holistic Management, ReGen Ag Etc.
Take multiple PDCs especially if there is one in the same type of bioregion or climate zone. Talk to long time farmers and neighbors from the area your land is in, listen to what stories they tell about historic events ( floods, fires, freezes, etc) make notes.
This will help you make better decisions when the time comes.
4 years ago
Another good source for supplies and really great information is Dr. Magritte Dogterom's page:
She has been studying mason bees and their cousins for many years, I have found her site to be a wealth of information!
4 years ago
Hi Isaac,

In answer to your questions:

1. Yes, I would be very happy to work with the NRCS, in order to have a free or even low cost permaculture design for my ranch. I have earned 3 PDC certificates over the last 12 years, but in the case of my own ranch, I feel it's important to get another designer's input and thoughts on my own land, to get some clear eyed vision. I am currently working with a good friend Permaculture Designer, to do this very thing and I am paying for this, because it is very much worth it!!

2. I am planning on investing in my land by implementing in stages the permaculture design. Of course, because infrastructure permaculture or otherwise, is expensive, I will need to do this over years.

3. I would definitely like some financial "aid" or grants or loans in the form of: fencing to exclude cattle from sensitive wetland type areas, I would really like to get some help with perimeter fencing to exclude range cattle, so I can establish agro-forestry plantings. Fencing to protect small tree plantings from deer and other wild browsers. Help with installations of water resources on the ranch to irrigate for tree plantings, water tank storage for gravity feed irrigation, livestock watering and for wild fire protection. Funding for nursery tree stock, establishment of infrastructure for producing my own nursery stock for tree plantings, and herbal nursery stock. Funding for pasture monitoring tools and training. Access for training all aspects of Holistic Management and other workshops in Key Line Design, permaculture and innovative marketing techniques.

4. I think its a great idea, because the more education federal agencies can access on the topic of permaculture, the better. There is potential to expand the information about permaculuture to many varied populations of land owners. Having workshops at landowners who have installed some permaculture designs, would help spread the word about permaculture also.

You are welcome to include these thoughts in your report, and of course you may email me questions. As you know, I am located in Okanogan County in Washington.


Hi Ryan,
I have a friend who lives near me in the Okanogan Valley of North Central Washington who has a great blog on growing her food with the buried "Hugelkultur" or wood beds with some , but minimal water used during our very hot and very dry summers. Yes, we were in the middle of the new worst wild land fires of Washington this August.
Her name is Julie and this is her blog info,
she has documented the transformation of her poor soils over a few years, into a bountiful garden on her blog.
She may be able to tell you just how much water she uses, and yes, in our dry and hot summer, it would be wishful thinking to expect big mounds of above ground Hugels to stay very wet for veggies.
I hope this helps a little bit.
5 years ago