Who's changed the course of their life for permaculture?

Discussion in 'The big picture' started by Tildesam, Mar 16, 2012.

  1. labradel

    labradel Junior Member

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    yes Ludi I believe that this discussion could be of great value i myself am a motor mechanic who has gone from std full time work to only 3 days a week with the produce from my place we dont see much drop in real income my partner works as a phsyc. nurse the ongoing off farm income is the reason we have been able to turn a barron crop paddock into reasonable production, it allows this to happen more quickly than might be possible without the income. both of us are in our late 50's and this extra growth speed is of value if we are to see the end results (it has been 15 years in making so far)
     
  2. Ludi

    Ludi Junior Member

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    I want to read more stories like that about people who are able to reduce their living expenses and work for pay requirements by implementing permaculture. I think this is so important especially in this changing economy (in the US the economy is still doing poorly) and as we age. I would like to get our place set up to support us in food and some energy production by the time my husband is of retirement age and can (maybe) collect his pension (if it still exists :( ). I think it is important for us to discuss how we can economically set up our permaculture systems which in the near future might help reduce expenses and enable increased quality of life as we age.
     
  3. labradel

    labradel Junior Member

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    my main theory is we will probably NEVER be rich in our retirement but we will be warm and NOT hungry (we grow food and fire wood)
     
  4. Ludi

    Ludi Junior Member

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    That's my goal as well. :)
     
  5. Tildesam

    Tildesam Junior Member

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    A very valid point, I'm ashamed to admit - I think too many things leech time from my day and I agree that I'd suddenly find room for much more. A classic teenager thing I'm still shaking off, I guess.

    Do you think you've found it yet? Or a long way to go, you think?


    Touché. I'm actually very (very?) early on in my career, and that's a bittersweet thing. While I haven't got "roots" (if you'll pardon the pun) holding me down at the moment, not many financial burdens, I am however short on life savings. I've only just begun really.

    So I've come somewhat to a fork in the road. Yes, Permaculture helps you save; yes, you get lots of satisfaction, yes you feel better for having made a sea-change: but will it make a difference in 10 years time, or will I experience a severely degraded way of life?

    And I don't mean this in the "Oh, I can't get a 60 inch plasma anymore" kind of degraded, the kind of degraded where I can't afford to replace my house after a fire - or I can't afford health insurance if I get bitten by - erm - a brown snake or something.

    I'm only in my early twenties, and I can already see that the office slog is going to hurt. I don't know, it could be escapism or something.

    But I'm painfully aware of the risks of jumping out this early, and the fact they could impact me long term.

    Lazy teens and all that.
     
  6. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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    I think it is like having a vege patch - it's never finished, and just when you think it is in balance something comes to the end of it's natural life and if you don't actively plan for it it gets replaced by weeds. This week I'm on top of it. Next week? I'll tell you then!

    Don't get too caught up on the 1001 reasons why you can't do permaculture. All of us can pull them out of thin air. If you have no savings you have no assets to lose!
     
  7. Pakanohida

    Pakanohida Junior Member

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    This is pretty much everyone's goal with Permaculture and zone 0 isn't it? I would like to add I am learning to grow my own mulch as well.
     
  8. labradel

    labradel Junior Member

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    yes pak being warm and fed well in retirement is not a new concept but i once worked with a fellow who at about a year before his impending retirement he began to worry to a very large extent about how he was going to be able to pay for food rent etc, having never bought a house or having never saved any money to live on in retirement. there is a lot to be said for good life decisions made early enough to be able to do something about them. I reckon that if i dont need to spend too much buying food or paying rent then the pension ( if it still exists ) will go much further and allow a better std of living not mention i will be able to eat GOOD food.
     
  9. Spidermonkey

    Spidermonkey Junior Member

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    I would love to move to the country and have a few acres of land. Unfortunately we have a mortgage; also my wife enjoys the 9-5 working lifestyle. What I am doing is practising my Permaculture skills on a smaller scale and learning how to grow my fruit and veg before I become reliant on them. When the mortgage is paid we will look for a semi rural lifestyle that will still allow my wife to pursue her career while I spend more time on the property.

    I am going on the PDC course in April and while I can't take ten weeks - six months to do internships and overseas projects I will be trying to get on some projects as a volunteer and do additional courses to build on my experience.
     
  10. purplepear

    purplepear Junior Member

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    @ spider monkey - there is so much that can be done and that needs doing in a suburban setting that moving to a few acres is for most a backward step. You can grow food for your family in such a small space and unless your passion is for hard work I would think seriously about staying where you are.
    just saying
     
  11. Pakanohida

    Pakanohida Junior Member

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    I was recently on a sad trip to the NYC area for personal reasons, however my esteemed collegue I agree with you. The areas around NYC that I visited, very affluent suburban neighborhoods started changing for the better. Micro-farms with farm fresh organic food right in the middle of major roadways in the middle of cities! The Big Apple area may just indeed become the Big Green Apple someday so long as more people stay put and adopt Permaculture for the sake of themselves, their families, their friends, their town, county, province, state, or nation. It is a way for all the worlds countries to have more then is needed so we can all have peace.
     
  12. Ludi

    Ludi Junior Member

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    I agree with those who say think twice before you move to the country. A few acres can be a big responsibility and an enormous amount of work (not to mention expense). My husband and I bought 20 acres of overgrazed and eroded ranchland with the idea of restoring most of it for wildlife. We've only made the most incremental of progress over the past decade and I feel we're not living up to the responsibility. Though I prefer the quiet of the country, I feel a large suburban lot would have been large enough to give me plenty of scope for permaculture. Permaculture in suburbia and the city will also reach far more people and I think it is one of the most important things a person can do at this point in history.
     
  13. Spidermonkey

    Spidermonkey Junior Member

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    I assume you will all be moving back to the suburbs then?
     
  14. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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    Never left!

    My belief is that the biggest predictor of success or failure on the way down the energy descent will be access to community, not land. By staying put in town there are many others around me that I can link in with to share resources, skills and knowledge. If I was rural then I might only have 2 or 3 neighbours within bike riding distance.

    Someone will have to be on the semirural farms though, because running bigger animals in the city is a challenge and growing grain crops requires more land than your average back yard. So if we still want bread and milk we'll need someone on a farm within bike riding distance.
     
  15. purplepear

    purplepear Junior Member

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    I hope you were not offended spidermonkey - I meant no offence but wanted to say that Permaculture is very legitimate in suburbia and perhaps even moreso than on acreage as you need so little space to provide for your family and unless you (not really you but generally) intend to supply the wider public with food to lock up land is counter intuitive.

    We will not be moving back as we provide for twenty families a week and growing and the town is surrounding us anyway so we will soon go from periurban to city farm status - very soon.
     
  16. Spidermonkey

    Spidermonkey Junior Member

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    I would like to raise chickens. In my garden I have 7 birds but I cannot have a rooster. I would like to have a cow for milk and my wife would like to keep bees. There are so many council restrictions where I live that I would prefer to move to somewhere that these restrictions will not apply and I will have the space to do it. This is not the first post I have expressed this desire but everytime I get advised not to do it. Usually the people who give me this advise and tell me how good it is to stay in the suburbs live on acreage. If they think the suburbs are the best way to go then they can move there themselves. Just saying.
     
  17. purplepear

    purplepear Junior Member

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    Why are you so defensive? Do what you will. My response is meant for the general audience triggered by your contribution.

    If other people desire is to get a cow and bees they can find ways while living where they are. Bees on the roof and cows on common land.

    My objection - and this may or may not apply to you spidermonkey - is people who move to acreage and get a cow and some bees and spend their weekends on the rideon and call it permaculture.

    just sayin too
     
  18. Ludi

    Ludi Junior Member

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    Nope, I will be figuring out how to make do where I am. I like the quiet of the country and my investment in home and land is here. I think people should live where they feel the most comfortable. :)
     
  19. Pakanohida

    Pakanohida Junior Member

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    I feel most comfortable in Hawai'i. Specifically, Kai'lua, Oah'u southward towards Makapu'u. If someone wishes to help my wife and I with this OBVIOUS problem, let me know by all means. ;)
     
  20. Ludi

    Ludi Junior Member

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    Yes, well, sometimes where we feel most comfortable isn't where we end up! It's rare everything can be perfect. I live where it gets WAY too hot and too cold for comfort. So I take back everything I said. I think people should do whatever they want and mostly ignore anything I say, because it will never be the exact right thing! :p
     

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