Ruso McCoy

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since Sep 09, 2010
Bainbridge, Wa
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Recent posts by Ruso McCoy

oh sorry, Washington zone 8, we have a fragile climate, no summer rain
still multiple spinach successions in the summer, it was defiantly my money maker, no one had it
6 years ago
I did a full on salad market garden without water in the middle of summer, I was the only one at market with Spinach too.

My secret is an obvious permaculture trick which i'll reiterate with this text diagram:

(Seasonal Pond)
        underground seepage
                      HUGGLE MOUND TO THE SUBSTRATUM andlower
                                        giant first year garden made of two year old horse manure/shaving compost 2'thick
                                              {walking path is dug out *swale* with chard and clovers planted
                                        More garden beds with spinach, arugula, continual lettuce lines
                                              {important to have tap root plants bring moisture up, and wall off the windy sides
                      HUGGLE AGAIN
                                        more gardens, repeat above

That is that,  the funny thing was is i haggled a guy for a 3 dollar sprinkler and I tested it on some spinach at the top where they looked behind the bottom of the hill spinach and it caused everything that got watered in a literal circle to bolt.

boo ya, do it
6 years ago
Hello, I am collecting and providing a Rare heritage breed of White and Blue Beveren Rabbits for myself and the surrounding community of interest.  I am also a failed small farmer in a small pond full of big fishfarmers who i now work for, so next year I am devoting my energy to growing and educating others on self subsistence food staples, and would like to focus some on growing food for my rabbits too!

If you have plant recommendations or recipes for complete Rabbit nutrition, I'd love to hear.
I keep my rabbits in tractors tht I have perfected to the point that a Rat got in once and couldnt get out.

Thank you permies, see you in Portland on the 15th
6 years ago
oh I've seen that too, we have AMAZING garlic in our broken down manure here.

Do you plant rhubarb in Fresh or broken down manure? i have 2000 rhubarb plants

ps. potatoes in fresh manure do get some scab but it's not as bad as you think, also the potatoes make habbittat for worms so within a year the manure is broken down into fine fine soil.
6 years ago
Hello I have a question, it's like the title says, what can I plant into composted horse manure, and what can I plant into fresh horse manure and shavings?

I have tried a little in the composted manure, I find leafy things grow well and taste good quality enough.  Chard didnt seem to enjoy it, but spinach and kale seemed fine.

Can I do Cabbage? what about Spinach?

for fresh manure I find it can be put on Raspberries and potatoes grow fine in it.  Anyone have experience with Jchokes or sweet potatoes?

Let me know! thank you!


6 years ago
I am a farm manager, starting a farm this year, which consists of multiple properties within 3 miles of eachother.
Now my question is based on the requirements to sell food.  I will be selling to restraunts, markets, and off property (which i know doesnt require anything).  I am thinking about getting an LLC based off watching two friends get one last year and having a secure success, but I am not sure if that is overkill.

I have made a Tshirt company before, but it's not a concern about getting sued because interns and animals pee or crap without my knowledge near food.  So some security and professionalism is my goal.

Anyways I'd like to hear how you other farmers deal with the distribution of food and keeping track of the paper work.

Thank you for your time,

6 years ago
Some invasive weeds have medicinal purposes, but the majority tend to be shunned and banished from fields and gardens. 
I think I have happened upon a clever idea that won't make me rich at all, but instead make land recovery an organized process.

So what I would like to do is take on acres of canadian thistle for my example,
My approach to remove canadian thistle would be by applying quak grass and english ivy onto your canadian thistle patch, till it in, then watch them compete and pull the tops of thistle.

Now you have a quak grass issue where it's hot, and english ivy where moisturish.  Throw in some Black berry roots to shade them out, till it up again!
eventually in 10 years it will become a blackberry thicket, where it otherwise would become a blackberry/thistle thicket.  Blackberries are a big thorny bastard that is manageable by hand, but even quicker when you throw in the famished goats! watch them go..!

eventually you will have to walk around with a fork, and pull up those rhyzombials that linger behind, so maybe follow behind with pigs.

THat is my idea rant, accept it, or dont
ideas welcomed
7 years ago
also to cheat, and depending on yuor soil,
I buy fertilizers, Kmag is great potassium and sulfur lowers the horseshit wood HIGH ph. sulfur is great for root structure too.
Chickenshit pellets, they are a low boost of nitrogen I like to turn into the soil right before I put plugs in. makes your food taste good even in first year of worked soil.
Lime is great for Alfalfa and salad, don't over lime
phosphorus for cucumbers tomatoes squash, helps with flowers development

make sure it's healthy and producing worm run off,
then get a fish tank bubbler, a bucket of gas off the chlorine,
add the worm run off, and 2tb molasses per gallon water,
let bubble for 32 hours then apply to your soil and well grown plants.

Making your own fish fertilizer is a great way have having fertile soils and tasty food,
We get free salmon farm floaters as they call it FOR FREE, most fish emulsion is made of minnows, herrings and mainly bones and waste materials.  if you make your own it will have much more broken down protein and if you add Epsom salt you will get a sulfur to your spray (great! right?) which is amazing on roots and PH reduction.

7 years ago
Wow GREAT video, i hope to be that cool of an old guy when i get there.
I want to meet this skeeter, he aught to come help chuck on BI with plant layout and design! wink wink

Good vid
7 years ago
Well one question is what sort of soil are you starting with? is it grassed? Do you have a tiller? 5 acres is a lot to start with, don't get lost and remember Baby steps.

What sort of sun exposure is there throughout the day? and water? are there hills or winter water build up/saturation issues, if so how can you turn them around into providing or being stored in biomass.  (I find standing outside in the failing sun is the best time to see the typography in land)

Next is to think about your markets, and how intense farming production you want to get into. Salad and Tomatoes in my minds eye are best cash crop, specially in family/residential hustle zones.
Carrots, parsnips, potatoes, are the best Return Cash Crop, less labor if done properly too.

I don't know if you've rehearsed your zone's grow charts, but it's always important to focus your energy and day time (Because you will learn you only have so much time in a day) on your cash opportunity but it's also important to provide other varieties of crops and colors to keep customers interested!

I am doing the same thing as you pretty much but have all my factors in play already. for you I would truly consider the longterm preposals if farming is for you, because farming is not boyscout camp for the summer, you start, commit and continue.  Do you plan on running these lands for numerous years? if so you should consider just putting 1/2-2/3 of all into instant covercrop, unless you have to do it by hand then you are just going to feed a lot of birds.  I personally enjoy growing 2 biomass plants for every palatable plant.  You NEED the biomass amendments and can use certain crops to feed your chickens! and RABBITS!
I recommend rabbits, they are a cuteness draw to selling veggies, they eat weeds and grass and a single bale of hay per rabbit for a winter, and if you grow food for your animals it will elevate the overall costs and boost PROFIT! both these animals can be enclosed entirely in mobile cages and dragged around for further food eleviation.

But for starting, you need to stand outside.
Look at your fields, consider the most efficient and effective approach to EVERYTHING.
and then start by figuring out how you are going to loosen the soil, where your paths will go so that you can reach your 2-3' arm in every direction and touch everything (meaning 5' wide beds)
I know permaculture talks about 'no till' but you have to start your loose soil by loosening it, then dig out paths around your beds and add that soil to the bed (making the bed raised enough [4-5"] dont raise beds TO high otherwise the peak will be dry, and all plants will grow around the base of the mound)  also with good design, no one will even feel like they aught to step on the beds.

At night figure out your general crop rotations, water availability to each sector of your fields (design everything around water) and where the main paths are easiest to reach everything, and where the human walking paths can comfortably be with less bends as possible.

Then start thinking about your customers, What will they want, candy food? (radish, cherry tomato, salad, sweet corn, strawberries) or more bring home organic supporter family food (potatoes, onions, leeks, beans, brassicas, squash) or will you be serving a slave duty to restaurants (salad, cooking turnips, celery, bulk herbs, beats, potato, mass tomato, more salad)

Then start fitting your annuals into the blanks with proper rotation, and considerations for all the other elements of time & energy you want to contribute with your investment returns roughly sketched out.  All along while you think about the long term which might want to be filled with fields of perennials like raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, orchards, asparagus, horseradish, rhubarb, artichokes.  if you decide a long term layout, how can you then plant them berries and also plant between them with your 2:1 biomass to food guild set up to help nurse the plants (not overcompete) and feed people.

Try to fit all of this into a budget while considering all of those unseen costs that are going to come when you need a piece to fix your whatits, or 10' of piping to finish the whosits, or seed tray materials, watercans, tools, rent.
I recommend learning to scavenge, it's your best survival skill, since you are with a church community it will be wise to connect your community to your actions through a blog or networking tool that you can broadcast material, financial, help needs and engage others, overall growing the organic movement in it's natural way.

That is my rant, accept it.
and consider building scrap material broad forks, buying greenhouses (can get 10x30' 6mil for $170ish w/ pvc ribs) write down everything you start and spend and pretend someone you admire is constantly reading it when you do.  Get in shape, eat good but also fast your body, don't ware gloves unless it's sharp or shit, in 2 years yuor skin will be leather.

7 years ago