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Pay What You Want
>>Starting at $1 $0<<



The Annual Staple Crop Calculator exists to take some of the guess work out for those of us far removed from our subsistence farming past. If you've always wanted to grow 100% of your own food, if you want to attempt the Rob Greenfield challenge and go an entire year on only what you grow and forage, or if you've suddenly found that your food security isn't as robust as you'd hoped, this simple yet powerful tool can help you decide which crops to grow and how much you'll need to plant in order to feed yourself, your family, or your community.

The Calculator currently includes data points for 24 calorie-dense staple crops with more being added all the time. Crops include:

  • Achira
  • Amaranth
  • Beans
  • Burdock
  • Corn
  • Cowpeas
  • Favas
  • Oca
  • Parsnip
  • Peas
  • Potatoes
  • Scorzonera
  • Sorghum
  • Sunchokes
  • Sunflower Seeds
  • Sweet Potato
  • Tarwi
  • Winter Squash (Flesh)
  • Winter Squash (Seeds)

  • As of version 1.1 the following crops were added:

  • Mashua
  • Mauka
  • Onions
  • Peanuts
  • Ulluco

  • Simply decide what percentage of your diet you want to come from each crop. If there's something that you can't or don't want to grow, simply set it to 0. No clue where to start? The included Welcome page and FAQ provide some tips for deciding how much of each thing to grow. And you can update the numbers from year to year as you discover which things you'd like to eat more of, and which things you'd like to eat less of. Instructions are included for dialing in your diet after the first year of growing 100% of your food.



    The Annual Staple Crop Calculator expands as your inner circle does. Whether you're growing for yourself, your family, your chosen family, or your entire community, The Calculator can accommodate it. Simply choose how many people you're growing for and what their daily calorie needs are. Need to consume more or less than 2000 calories? Easily enter your daily calorie needs and The Calculator will adjust its output accordingly. Don't know your daily calorie needs? Get an estimation with an easy to use online calculator. Feeding people with different caloric needs? Instructions are included for using The Calculator for meeting the needs of people of different ages, activity levels, or dietary needs.



    Once you decide what percentage of your diet will come from each crop The Calculator tells you how many pounds you need to grow to meet your target and estimates how many plants it will take to achieve that yield. These calculations are based on conservative yield estimates that most gardeners should be able to achieve barring serious pest, disease, or climatic factors. The Sources tab provides insights into when you might want to increase, or further decrease, these yield estimates as well as what you might want to change them to.



    As of version 1.2, you may now tell The Calculator how many plants you are going to grow and it will automatically calculate what percentage of your diet that number of plants will provide.



    The Calculator tells you your average daily intake for each crop in pounds, grams, and calories per day. This can allow you to see at a glance if you're growing way too much or too little of a given crop and adjust your plan accordingly.



    The Calculator includes warnings if the figures you've entered come out to less than 100% of your caloric needs so that you don't accidentally go into the season thinking you need to grow fewer plants than you really do. Note: A bug on Google's end has broken this feature for the foreseeable future.




    The Welcome page is the first thing you see and provides clear instructions for getting started with plenty of pictures, as well as basic documentation for all of the features included in The Calculator.



    As of version 1.2,
    the Notes page allows you to track your yields from year to year and will automatically calculate your yield per plant.



    The Sources page includes references for all of the data included in The Calculator, as well as the basic assumptions underlying the math. If particular yield estimates seem especially high or low, the Sources tab will tell you why and how to change them. It includes both information about how I formulated the yield estimates, as well as how I came up with calorie values, especially for things that don't have calorie values provided by the USDA.



    The FAQ answers the most common questions about what The Calculator is designed to do and how to use it. New questions are being added all the time to make The Calculator clearer, easier to use, and more powerful.



    I'm making The Annual Staple Crop Calculator available to people regardless of their ability to pay because it's my mission to help people grow more of their own food. I never want cost to be a factor preventing people from using a tool that might help them become more food secure. To that end, I've set up The Annual Staple Crop Calculator on a pay what you want model. People who choose to pay $1 or more have the option of having their name appear on the Contributors page according to the level of their contribution, from Wood Level at $1 to the Unobtainium Level at $35. Further, people who contribute at the Silver Level and up (that's just $10 or more) will have the option of including their website along with their name. Just fill out a short form after your purchase to indicate how you'd like your name and website to appear. Including a website is 100% optional. If you want to contribute without having your name appear on the Contributors page, just don't fill out the form, or enter Anonymous as your name. Feel free to use The Calculator free of charge for as long as you want and with all of the features included. If at any time you decide you're ready to make a contribution, please feel free to do so.



    Contribution levels are as follows:


  • FREE
  • Wood Level - $1
  • Stone Level - $3
  • Bronze Level - $5
  • Iron Level - $8
  • Silver Level - $10
  • Gold Level - $12
  • Diamond Level - $15
  • Platinum Level - $20
  • Titanium Level - $25
  • Unobtainium Level - $35


  • Be a part of the conversation. Questions? Contributions? Add them on the main thread. Read it and get up to speed.

    Ready to get started? Just select your option below. Access The Calculator for free with the link below the purchase options.

    NOTE: The current version of the Digital Market software does not support a true Pay What You Want system. It only allows you to set 10 or so different prices, so I tried to set a broad range of prices for people to select. Also, the 1ยข option is a limit of the Digital Market software as well. It crashes if you try to set the price to $0, but it labels it in a way that implies you can name your own price. IF THE PRICE YOU WANT TO PAY is not given as an option, the only workaround is to purchase multiple copies totaling the amount you wish to pay. As an alternative, you may make your initial purchase through the Digital Market to unlock the calculator and then send me a PM to request my PayPal address to pay the difference, though this does cheat Permies out of their share of the sale for hosting and maintaining the Digital Market so should be considered as a last resort. IF YOU JUST WANT THE CALCULATOR FOR FREE simply skip to the link below the payment options to gain access. I hope this helps clarify things. Sorry for the confusion! If you would like to see an actual Pay What You Want option added to the Digital Market, the Tinkering forum is probably the best place to make that request, though it's likely not possible without a pretty significant overhaul of the forum code. Thanks! Feel free to post below or PM me if there's anything else I can clarify.

    $1.00

    The Annual Staple Crop Calculator - Wood Level $1
    • Unlimited use
    • Grow all the food
    • Include your name on the Contributions page

    $3.00

    The Annual Staple Crop Calculator - Stone Level $3
    • Unlimited use
    • Grow all the food
    • Include your name on the Contributions page

    $5.00

    The Annual Staple Crop Calculator - Bronze Level $5
    • Unlimited use
    • Grow all the food
    • Include your name on the Contributions page

    $8.00

    The Annual Staple Crop Calculator - Iron Level $8
    • Unlimited use
    • Grow all the food
    • Include your name on the Contributions page

    $0.01

    The Annual Staple Crop Calculator - Pay What You Want/FREE
    • DO NOT CHOOSE THIS OPTION (it only gives a penny to Paypal)
    • Read the NOTE section above for details
    • Skip to the bottom of the post to access the calculator for FREE

    $10.00

    The Annual Staple Crop Calculator - Silver Level $10
    • Unlimited use
    • Grow all the food
    • Include your name on the Contributions page
    • Include your website on the Contributions page

    $12.00

    The Annual Staple Crop Calculator - Gold Level $12
    • Unlimited use
    • Grow all the food
    • Include your name on the Contributions page
    • Include your website on the Contributions page

    $15.00

    The Annual Staple Crop Calculator - Diamond Level $15
    • Unlimited use
    • Grow all the food
    • Include your name on the Contributions page
    • Include your website on the Contributions page

    $20.00

    The Annual Staple Crop Calculator - Platinum Level $20
    • Unlimited use
    • Grow all the food
    • Include your name on the Contributions page
    • Include your website on the Contributions page

    $25.00

    The Annual Staple Crop Calculator - Titanium Level $25
    • Unlimited use
    • Grow all the food
    • Include your name on the Contributions page
    • Include your website on the Contributions page

    Access The Annual Staple Crop Calculator FOR FREE

    Just follow the instructions for making your own private copy. Upgrade at at time by following this link and grabbing the newest version. Just check the version number and changelog to see what's new.

    NEW! Intro to The Annual Staple Crop Calculator class. (Subscribe to my channel for future classes and to get your questions answer live with examples.)




    $$ Want to make some extra cash? If you're a Permies affiliate, I'm offering a 40% commission on any contributions that result from you going out and spreading the word about The Calculator. Normal affiliate stuffs apply. $$
    COMMENTS:
     
    pioneer
    Posts: 361
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    Hi all. If you're using The Calculator, I'd love to hear about anything that can be clarified or improved. I have lots of features bouncing around in my head that I'd like to add to future versions.

    If you're using The Calculator and growing a staple crop that isn't already included, go to the main thread and let me know the name of the crop (common name or scientific name if it might be confused for something else). If you can, also try to include sources for calories (if that information is not readily available from the USDA) and yield (ideally in pounds per plant, but yield per acre/hectare is fine, as long as the seeding rate is also included.) If you can't find that information, that's fine. I'll try to find it, but it may take me longer to add it, or I may not be able to add it if the information isn't readily available. As noted in the FAQ, and for the reasons explained therein, I'm generally excluding any crops which fall below 300 calories/pound. If you think a particular crop deserves an exception to that rule, I'm happy to hear your reasoning, but I probably still won't include it (the noted exception is winter squash; the flesh is only about 180 calories/pound, but that's balanced out by the seeds, which are over 2500 calories/pound.)

    Thanks for your support of this project. I hope it helps people.
     
    master steward
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    I haven't had a chance to look at the calculator, but I just had to compliment you on your mastery of the Digital Market. You figured out how to set multiple prices and include price options on each thread. Seriously impressive work! And if the work you put into this thread is any indication, the calculator has gotta be fantastic. Well done!
     
    Mathew Trotter
    pioneer
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    Nicole Alderman wrote:I haven't had a chance to look at the calculator, but I just had to compliment you on your mastery of the Digital Market. You figured out how to set multiple prices and include price options on each thread. Seriously impressive work! And if the work you put into this thread is any indication, the calculator has gotta be fantastic. Well done!



    Thanks! I knew I wanted to allow people to pay what they thought was appropriate, or what they could afford. It took some head scratching/banging, but I'm like 99% happy with the way it turned out. There are a few things I'd do differently next time, knowing now the limitations of the software...

    Thanks for checking it out! Hope you get a chance to try it out. ๐Ÿ™‚
     
    pollinator
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    In the 1ยข/ pay what you want option, is there a way to change the dollar amount? I couldn't figure that out.
     
    Nicole Alderman
    master steward
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    Jan White wrote:In the 1ยข/ pay what you want option, is there a way to change the dollar amount? I couldn't figure that out.



    I don't think there's a way to change the amount. I don't think our current digital market programming allows for that. But, he gave such a wide range of prices that you could probably the price you want to pay in one of them:


  • FREE
  • Wood Level - $1
  • Stone Level - $3
  • Bronze Level - $5
  • Iron Level - $8
  • Silver Level - $10
  • Gold Level - $12
  • Diamond Level - $15
  • Platinum Level - $20
  • Titanium Level - $25
  • Unobtainium Level - $35

  •  
    pollinator
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    I had trouble with changing the amount also and ended up doing multiple purchases to get to the donation level that I intended. The one cent purchase I accidentally made was my attempt to change the value and backing out of Paypal didn't work this time. I mostly got the end result I wanted and that's all that really matters, but the method was a bit convoluted.
     
    Nicole Alderman
    master steward
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    I think if there's a lot of people who want to sell things at "Pay your own price," Paul might go for spending the programming time and money to make that happen. I think it'd be a cool feature! Right now there's so many development things that have to happen, that we'd need a lot more interest in this sort of thing to make it happen.

    I'm really impressed with how much time and effort Matthew put into his digital market threads to make them work. Bravo Mathew!
     
    Jan White
    pollinator
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    Robin Katz wrote:I had trouble with changing the amount also and ended up doing multiple purchases to get to the donation level that I intended. The one cent purchase I accidentally made was my attempt to change the value and backing out of Paypal didn't work this time. I mostly got the end result I wanted and that's all that really matters, but the method was a bit convoluted.



    Haha - that's what I did too. An accidental 1ยข purchase and then multiples. But i also couldn't figure out how to buy the same thing more than once, so ended up buying one each of different amounts.
     
    Mathew Trotter
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    Hey. Yeah. Sorry guys. There's no way with the way the digital market is currently programmed to do a true "Pay What You Want" so I simply tried to provide an array of options. The 1ยข option was another limitation of the digital market software. It was supposed to be a FREE option, but it crashes the forum hard if you try to set the price to $0... once I had it set up that way there was no fixing it. It also breaks if you try to add more than 10 different payment options, so I added as many options as the software allows. Sorry for the confusion. I thought I explained clearly enough, but I'll try to revise the post so it's clearer. Unfortunately, that's really all I can do with the current forum software. I also never expected anyone to want to pay more than the maximum value that I offered. The only real solution to that is to buy multiple price levels or buy copies as gifts. The only other option would be to make the purchase through Permies and then PM me for my PayPal address to send the difference... but I really don't want to cut Paul out of his share when he's done so much work to make the platform available. Maybe Paul will want to look into adding an actual Pay What You Want feature at some point, but I imagine it would take a considerable amount of extra code with how things are currently programmed, and probably isn't worth Paul's time unless lots of people start requesting the feature. I left some notes in the tinkering forum about my experience with setting this up, so that's kinda the limit of what I can do on the software side. I'll at least try to make it clearer for people going forward.

    Thanks for letting me know that it's notclear. I was curious why people were making 1ยข purchases, and now it makes sense.
     
    Mathew Trotter
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    Okay. I added a note above the payment options as clarification and changed the wording on the 1ยข option to try to make it clear that it's a limit of the software. You might not be able to see the updates if you've already purchased the 1ยข option, but if you can let me know if it's clear now. Thanks!
     
    gardener
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    Buy your dog some food.
    I 0d out the things I probably won't grow and increased the % of the things I do grow to a reasonable maximum number of plants and reduced the onions to 0.1% still too many plants but I am using top multiplier onions as green onions so I probably would have to eat half a pound per day to make that percentage but I harvest them daily though less than 1/4 pound.

    With the selections I made it calculated a possible 90%.   If I get the numbers for grain flax, millet, lentils, buckwheat that I use regularly and can grow it should be possible.
    `I will be raising wheat and converting that into chickens and ducks That will be a whole other calculation.

    I will be 81 this growing season and I have social security and income from my therapy services so I will not push myself to meet the goals but I will try to keep track of some things and see if I can add to the knowledge base.  
     
    Mathew Trotter
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    Hans Quistorff wrote:Buy your dog some food.
    I 0d out the things I probably won't grow and increased the % of the things I do grow to a reasonable maximum number of plants and reduced the onions to 0.1% still too many plants but I am using top multiplier onions as green onions so I probably would have to eat half a pound per day to make that percentage but I harvest them daily though less than 1/4 pound.

    With the selections I made it calculated a possible 90%.   If I get the numbers for grain flax, millet, lentils, buckwheat that I use regularly and can grow it should be possible.
    `I will be raising wheat and converting that into chickens and ducks That will be a whole other calculation.

    I will be 81 this growing season and I have social security and income from my therapy services so I will not push myself to meet the goals but I will try to keep track of some things and see if I can add to the knowledge base.  



    That's great! I can't believe that buckwheat isn't on the list. It's definitely one I've been thinking seriously about growing. Flax is one that's definitely been discussed but I haven't found numbers for it yet. I definitely have some additional things to research.

    I low-balled the numbers so that there'd be some wiggle room, so hopefully it's a bit better than 90%, but with the extra crops it may not matter.

    Thanks! I'm looking forward to hearing how your yields compare. That's going to be the interesting thing to find out this year.
     
    Mathew Trotter
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    I streamed a class on the use of the Calculator on March 10th. You can view a replay of the class below and you can subscribe for future classes and have your questions answered live with examples.



    If anyone would like to attend a class and has a request for a specific day and time, I will try to accommodate it (if it's not a completely insane time in my timezone.) Otherwise, I'm happy to take questions ahead of time and answer them live with examples. The stream will be viewable at your leisure.
     
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    Greetings, We share all hpful kniwledge whether or not there are associated perks and always have๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿค—๐Ÿฅฐ๐Ÿค—๐Ÿ˜Š! Though we've not accepted reciprocation in the past we accept the offer ! Additionally, we are forwarding permies.com to a another global shaker and mover for additional exposure to share the live and knowledge.
     
    pollinator
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    This calculator is great!  I was able to move my copy into Excel, where I can edit it.  I took a few things out that aren't useful to us, and -- believe it or not -- added eggs and milk!  No, hens and goats aren't plants, but it works for the purposes of the calculator!  

    It helped me figure out the best use of the small garden space I have -- as we garden here longer and add to the garden, I can rearrange the crops we grow.  
     
    Hold that thought. Tiny ad:
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