Fred Winsol

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since May 22, 2011
Livin the self-reliant life since 2004.
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Recent posts by Fred Winsol

Consensus processes are under scrutiny by many communities. From my experience at a few ecoVillages, seems that consensus minus 3 or 4 seems to work for some people. I think Diana Christian has some great articles on the subject.
http://www.ic.org/busting-the-myth-that-consensus-with-unanimity-is-good-for-communities/
4 years ago
Just got back into this forum and noticed all the great posts... rock on Redding permaculture group. Hope to visit ya'll some day. Didn't see any upcoming events tho. I teach living energy - aka energy permaculture locally around Placerville area.
4 years ago
After a few years of attending many intentional community + permaculture meetings, I've started this meet-up network for people interested in forming/developing and actually DOING IT: an ecoVillage based on the Ringing Cedars - Anastasia concept. If you're interested in helping out or just joining the conversation and learning, please comment here and join the meet-up group: Northern California EcoVillage Network ( http://www.meetup.com/Northern-California-EcoVillage-Network/ )
5 years ago

Karen Crane wrote:Am still in process of moving to Northern California.
Would like to be in touch with anyone particularly
around the Redding area.
Please let me know what is going on!!!



Karen, check out http://shiresprings.com/
they're located about an hour east of Redding. I'll be at their gathering next weekend.
5 years ago

ross johnson wrote:Biochar is similar to charcoal but its different. What it is is carbonized organic matter. If you have a heat source and put something on it in the presence of oxygen then the materiel will catch fire. If you put materiel in a heat source but have it cut off from oxygen, the materiel will smolder and char. Many of the compounds contained in the materiel, will not burn off so the biochar will be a little richer then charcoal.



Wholeheartedly agree with this. Some people call it 'poor man's biochar': at your next campfire/firepit session, have some dirt ready and cover the white hot coals with around 2 inches of dirt which is in effect cutting off the oxygen quickly - the methane (producer gas) gets sequestered into the coals and you have RICH biochar. You'll have to wait a couple days for it to cool down and then I usually bury the chunks between 6-12" into the vegie areas.

Last year I attended the International BioChar conference and was amazed to see many attendees from the Midwest USA, Asia + S.America: turns out it is big business this biochar and results in 'carbon credits' BioChar will have a very important role in restoring our depleted soils - like the Mayans did.
5 years ago
I've been in N.Cal (wonder what geo area that includes) between the Bay Area, Redding + Tahoe... I now own acreage in the Sierra and have been very active trying to find my tribe to get an ecoVillage started. There's quite a lot of things on co-housing around which is not my thing. Next weekend, there's a get together east of Redding for an aspiring 'Shire' ecovillage which I will be attending. Just throwing this out there - I would be very interested in meeting people who want to start an ecoVillage and have the persistence, some basic skills and focus on permaculture ++.
5 years ago
I have a few acres in Northern California and practice biodynamics + permaculture. There's a couple structures on site, and constructing a new building. Lotsa renewable energy, and generally close the loop on everything.

Always looking for people to help out in exchange for room + board. Work tasks would range from gardening to light construction.
5 years ago
excellent discussion... I would advise as thin a layer as possible on top of a wood subfloor using fiberglass hairs to prevent cracks, and putting in some good old fashioned expansion joints like the cement boys do... and also I would NOT mix in any type of manure binder or anything that smells weird. A friend's place has a very subtle putrid smell after using a manure binder... you don't want that indoors! Best wishes - and I do hope you do your earthen floor. It will give you years of great service.

My earthen floor is 1-1/2" thick on top of 1/2" of sand on top of three layers of roofing felt paper on top of thin cinderblocks for underfloor heating+cooling... ALL this on top of 2x8's spaced 16" with 1-1/2" plywood subfloor and it's held up well for over 10 years now.
5 years ago
I agree... compost toilets are great for the live-in people... but guests (especially from urban areas) generally turn their nose up at them - only after the reluctantly try it do they realize it ain't no big deal.
i had to install a flushing toilet (hard retrofit) just for guests and luckily it's only used rarely.
6 years ago
I trust that solar hot water will be part of your house? Since freezing is THE big issue, i'd recommend a drainback system using a variable DC pump and avoid all the other hi-tech, hi-cost, closed glycol systems. I live in the Sierras at 4500 ft and use a simple batch solar HW heater for years... gravity fed rainwater... only problem is when there's snow on the window panes of the breadbox heater.
6 years ago