Christopher Stinnett

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since Jan 10, 2019
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Recent posts by Christopher Stinnett

Here is a rudimentary isometric view with an estimate of the creek, spring, and overflow swamp. The swamp has dried up a lot already in last couple weeks.
1 week ago
Sorry for the long absence, but I've spent most of my time at the land, exploring, cleaning up, and planning. Haven't gotten as much begun as I'd like, but there is a LOT to consider and I'm just one guy doing manual labor of it. Time and money will get it done though eventually.
Just wanted to point out I won't abandon this thread, but there may be lulls in it, since I'm not a smart phone user and my PC is at home, of which I've spent little time recently except with the family. Basically, I've just been cleaning up the fallen barn and general clearing of trash in the old buildings or debris on the land. Reminds me of my childhood playing Harvest Moon on the Super Nintendo....but harder, haha. When interesting develop in time, I'll be sure to update this thread for fun and discussion.
 Thank you for the definition, now I understand. The swampy area has dried up a LOT since then, just from the dry weather. Since it has I've found that the spring has already made a mini-creek flowing to the main creek, and that it just stalls in places and overtime fills up. Very carefully I plan on finding the highest source of spring on land, capping carefully and with pro help. Will probably widen the stale spots so it flows quicker to creek for now to stop the excess pooling.

That info on pond freezing has been saved in my notes to refer to when I get to that stage, so thank you.

Thanks for the link, I've bookmarked it for reference.

That is good info on fish stocking, so I've saved it in my notes to refer to, as well, when I get to that stage. Thank you for your input.

Zone 3 is about the same as Zone 1 elevation wise, it just gets pooled up by the spring not flowing a quick path into the creek, so the "swamp" can easily be corrected. Though yes, Zone 1, 2 are the lowest elevation with Zone 3 being the beginning of a slope heading South. I'll post an isometric view here soon to give the best idea of the topography.

Yes, I have a heavy-duty lawnmower and trailer for simple stuff , but in the future will definitely invest in a tractor. Money for that is already being saved into.

Not a major bridge(it's a fairly shallow but constant creek) but with some of the reusable barn lumber, I was going to construct one. It won't take much to go over that creek.

Point being, again, even though I'll have long lulls in updates sometimes, I'll always come back and discuss things on here.
1 week ago
 I get the idea of a swale and pumping into the pond, but can you elaborate on matts of green organic matter and animals to "gluey?" the pond? Not sure of the term gluey.
 I'm glad you pointed out the size and about it not freezing reasons. That's good info for me. What do you mean by "high" stocking rate? I have no knowledge of a good pond design when it comes to good plants to plant near/in it and what to stock it with that will succeed.
  Thank you for the info!
1 month ago
 Which is fine, because my wife LOVES willows, so a few might be a good idea for soaking excess water. I was thinking the same with the food forest, so it can roll into the hills and woods. Just seems like the natural place for it.
 Thanks for the link, that's good information to think on. I really do want a pond. Pulling the topsoil has been brought up from my brother, so you reinforced that idea, so thanks.

 Yeah, a bridge would be nice. At moment, I can jump across it and I really don't want to take a vehicle over there anyway(may have to though, depending on scale of what I decide to do), but a bridge is a serious thought depending on my laws here (I've heard we are picky about messing with creeks nowadays) because I'm not going to be young and jumping 4-5 gaps forever. Hydropower has been brought up and is a wonderful idea and should be a fun project to boot. Thanks for your input.

  I think what you think is cool. I can't believe I didn't mention herbs up there before, because those are most certainly going in the ground. Everything you mention are things I want to accomplish here. I imagine you listing those off in a fast paced, excited voice. Made me smile, so thanks!
  I'm aware deer can be a problem when it comes to messing with gardens, so I'll have to keep them in mind with all this.
1 month ago
 Thanks for the specifics. I'll look into more plants of that nature and see what I want to do with that.

 Yes, despite it's light swamp features that is the area I want to grow in if I can mitigate the standing water enough to do so. Although, 1 to 2 is where most of the sunlight comes in at. 3 is shadowed a little more, but it does also get good morning to late afternoon sun, so it's a definite possibility.
 Getting a backhoe to 3 could prove treacherous, due to it's swamp-like qualities and having to cross a creek(don't really want to disturb it, it's quite beautiful.) Yet I see your point. I do want a pond there, so I'll just have to investigate the options. Thanks for the input on it, it gets me to thinking.
 Congrats on getting the other 7.5, always nice to have more land to work with and for the future generations!
 Some minor hydro power is on my possibility list. I know we have some newer laws dealing with creeks and such, so I'll have to figure that out first, but if possible, OH YES! I've been told the creek stays pretty constant and doesn't rise much even in fierce rain, but that's yet to be personally seen.

 I'll probably edit this into the main post, but my general plan for now is 1  being where I build a new home, between 1 and 2 being my kitchen garden, yard, play area for the kids. 2 and W of it being a major garden area, future animal area. Along the outskirts of 1 and 2 would be nice for trees, vines, bushes just in various places to help up the privacy from the road. 3 if I can mitigate the swampiness would be ideal for my food forest, pond, mushroom stacks, maybe more animals there, and chill spots. 4 is my most unknown. Maybe a mini-underground home for fun, bees up there, nature observance, not really sure what hills could be used for in food production, but sure it can be. Ginseng? That would be wonderful.

 Feel free to input thoughts to that general plan. Thanks to you two for your input thus far.

1 month ago
Hi Eric! Thank you! I do plan on being here for the rest of my days and look forward to what becomes of the land.

I do plan on swales and am interested in Hugelkulture. The area W of the house is all open, flat land fit for use as gardens. About 3-4 acres total available for gardening in general, so while I won't do it all at once, over time and while curbing as much work as possible, as with Hugelkulture, is the plan. I do plan on doing the soil tests.

As far as planting cover crops, can you be more specific? I have a basic understanding of the terms and ideas, but specifics would be very helpful. This move was fairly sudden and while always spending my time in the mountains, actual homesteading is not my area of expertise, though one day it will be, haha.

Yes, my thoughts exactly on the house. My wife enjoys the old design, but we both know it's the smart play to build anew.

Again, thank you. I'll be sure to add pictures and add more posts as things come along.
1 month ago
Hi Everyone! I'm an old lurker on these forums, but never made an account until now. I'm now in need of as much wisdom I can acquire. I've just recently purchased 10 acres for a good price in Southeast Tennessee from an old family whose grandparents lived there last 25 years ago. If this is the improper forum for this let me know and I'll correct. Now let's add a crude picture and explain the major landmarks.

It is drawn to be North being the top with a decent few of the rising sun and good view of the setting sun. The black area is off my property but flows evenly into it. The two white marks are neighbors, one for sale across road, and the one connected to me is a nice private guy, so far.

1. An old house built in 1900 that has been added on to in 46' from it's original cabin form. The cabin portion is still in decent condition, but the added on has to be gutted. Remodeling is an option, but seeing as some foundation work, electrical,and septic/plumbing needs to be done, on top of tearing out the old rooms and replacing them(bathroom, kitchen at least), then it would most likely be cheaper for me to tear it down, save what I can and build anew in a style/design I like. It has a well next to it, and as far as septic goes I'm yet to be sure of what they used with their commode since it's been said to me they didn't have a septic tank, but I perc'd it before buying slightly to the SW of the house, so I have 3 good build areas for a new house if I want, including the current location.

2. This area W of the House is all flat, nicely draining, good soil with a few structures on it. The 2 mark is directly where a fallen down old barn is, with lots of reusable tin and wood. South of it(the tiny white mark) is a little barn in the style of lincoln-log type of cabin where I'll be setting up camp while I work on the land for now.It's the only structure that will stay in the end. A couple of others small structures exist, but they are just salvage and will be cleaned off. A little NW of the 2 is a small incline to the road with a gate still there that can still be used(The road is about 2 foot elevated above property).

As for flooding in that section, it doesn't happen. Old family have seen the place since they were mountain men constantly passing it and word from neighbors and seller was that it doesn't flood and seeing no water damage on the structures suggest that to me as well.

THE CREEK is about five foot wide and maybe 1-2 feet deep of constant water that originate from a spring about a mile up the mountain and goes through about five well-kept properties before coming onto my land.

3. The flat area just S of the creek is badly represented on this map, but it's about an acre and half wide progressing into a triangle shape on the S side. It's lightly swampy from where the rain flows down the mini-bowl from 4. I feel it can be mitigated some with maybe a pond, swales/trenches, plants that love water, etc.
there is a small metal pig pen there and I've been told the old owner had pigs in that area, so I know it doesn't get unusable there. I hope.

4. Basically starts becoming a steeper mountainous hill a bit,but can be walked up through the middle with some effort. Nice view from it and a few level spots, all wooded. Not sure of the trees, but no pine is there. there is a couple very level areas that house could possible be put on it, but I'm leaning more toward building near 1 mark first, but we'll see in the future. I need to walk it more to get a better idea of it compared to the lower half.

 All in all, for me it's a very tranquil,serene spot not but 10 mins in both directions to two rivers I swam at my whole life, and about 25 mins from a major town. I'm young, with a wife and 2 children(eventually a third, but not yet) and we both work our own hours with decent pay. We own the land and have very little overhead right now. The area is a very rural, small town up in the mountains, but easy to get to with nice paved roads.
 My vision includes dabbling in everything a little, with a focus on kitchen gardens at 1 mark and hopefully a food forest with a pond at 3 if I can mitigate the swamp enough to do so. I'd like to
-Grow all I can, maybe a cash crop or two(small scale,watermelons sell great here    in summer)
-Grow fruit trees, nuts, vine plants, etc in a permaculture aspect
-Keep bees
-Grow edible mushrooms
-Dabble in wood working/blacksmith as a pure hobby thing
-Possibly down the road raise some simple animal, with Chickens being most   feasible. I know the old owner had pigs and some cows here.
-Up for anything that I haven't considered, if I receive some suggestions.

What I'm posting for is to get a group knowledge going specific to me and possibly others in a similar situation, hopefully. Suggestions, questions, answers...just wisdom in what my journey will possible entail.

I've always enjoyed this site and I look forward to adding to it as I learn and talking to you all as I become a possible valuable member of the site. Take care all and thanks in advance for any help given.

1 month ago