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Old 10-20-2010, 04:18 AM
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Default Self sustainable living on 5th of an acre



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This family of 4 lives on a 5th of an acre and grows all their own food and raises livestock. 6,000 lbs of produce on a 5th of an acre. Amazing!


Old 10-20-2010, 04:24 AM
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It just amazes me how alien this reporter portrays this family. Less then 100 years ago most Americans lived this way. This is exactly how the corporations DONT want us to live.

If we as a country got back to the basics like this family has there would be no more Wal-Marts. This family is a perfect example of how we should all strive to live. Screw the brand name clothes, hi tech gadgets, and societys obsession with bling!
Old 10-20-2010, 04:35 AM
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http://urbanhomestead.org/
Old 10-20-2010, 05:58 AM
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If laid out properly a small amount of land can produce amazing results. If you had a one acre farm for example you could put a cow, goat, a few pigs, and a dozen or so hens. The goat would provide milk when the cow was dry. The cow would be a great manure producer and could be your fertilizer for the rest of your acre. You could use the other half to raise fruit and vegetables if you kept your land well drained. With a good grass stand on half your acre it would feed your cow through the summer months. It can be done on different scales, but can be done! Interesting thread.
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Old 10-20-2010, 06:07 AM
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That set up he has is great! Although I have reservations if the financial aspect is "doable" for the average person.
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Old 10-20-2010, 07:12 AM
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This is our goal. I saw these videos a while ago and I've wanted to achieve this ever since! It's a full time job I'm sure, does that mean I can quit my job??
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Old 10-20-2010, 09:30 AM
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impressive - way over my level.

we use about a 5th of an acre right now for our basic garden - over the years we've added things like a 30 foot double row arbor for the green beans to climb..it's almost 8 ft high so I can walk under it and pick without crouching.
We also have rows for other climbers that are single row arbors..some raised beds...potatoe tire piles, etc...we grow more each year in the basics of peas, beans(various) squash, tomatos, etc...than we can handle ourselves...canning, freezing, eating...giving some away.

I want goats, but the cost to fence the areas I want them in is my prohibition right now...we have 12 acres..and I'd like to place the goats in some of the wooded space and have them clear the underbrush..but goats don't believe in fences and with the yotes and even a couple bobcats.. I'd just hate to loose my goats....it's on my list though.

if I see many more signs of food crisis.. I will make the move to goats and domestic meat rabbits.
Old 10-20-2010, 09:31 AM
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Whats really neat about this family is that what they started doing just to be more self sufficient, turned into a family buisness bringing in income.
Old 10-20-2010, 09:50 AM
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Thank you for posting the videos.

Where's the tractor?

Seriously, where many go wrong is thinking they need large acreage and other expense assets.

People also forget that they need a market. They need marketing skills, and marketable products.

We rented to a family in Texas who did what this family is doing, except their market was far from where they lived and grew their food. They were still able to make a profit. Partners in their operation were single moms, who grew some of the crops in their own yards and helped with harvest and delivery.

Getting "pretty" organic produce is important. It takes experience. You have to know your varieties. What do the specialty restaurants want? What is can be grown without ugly pest and disease damage in your area?

Do you have the discipline necessary to do what needs to be done in very short time windows? This is more discipline demanding then owning a milk cow that has to be milked twice a day.

Even if you never plan on selling your produce and you have 200 acres like me, this intensive method of gardening is very productive for family gardening.
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Old 10-20-2010, 10:11 AM
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My dad did something similar when I was a kid in the ghetto area of Seattle. The whole backyard was a garden, planted cherry and apple trees on the side and had honey bees. The next door neighbor was influenced by him and got a goat and made his own garden. All this with crack houses, hookers and drive by shootings on the same block. He now lives in the middle of nowhere with all the property he needs to do his thing.

I've wanted to do this, but my HOA won't allow me to raise rabbits and chickens. I'm allowed to have a garden in the backyard if it's ok with the neighbors. I'm working on hydroponics to do what I need in my backyard to have more space to grow things and I'm looking into honeybees (didn't see anything about that in the HOA).
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Old 10-20-2010, 12:52 PM
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so here is my idea for a 65.ft long-x-50.ft wide sized lot to make one person completely self sustainable as it need ..

here is part of my crazy idea about the whole small lot thing ..

move the house underground and use the above area of the house as a personal space for the solar and wind power system to power the house for all electrical needs and entance system to get and out of the place and well water system also is located in this area..this area is 20.ft long-x-50.ft wide

plus the fact once the land has settle above the house entance area and it ready to be landscaped as it need it to make your area of the land as a personal space

a small entance drive way that sized as -x-45.ft long-x-12.ft wide goes all the way back to the end of the land with a small 5-high cable wire fence around the personal area of the person who owns the land to keep the land from the tillable land as it going to be part of the larger area garden set up ..

as part of the driveway is located the septic leaching field set up of 2.ft wide-x-to a depth of 24.inchs in a sloping manner from the septic tank unit ..the standard driveway width is 10,ft wide ..

located at the end of the driveway is a small metal or wood roof carport to cover the car from the sun or bad weather as it need ..

plus also have in one of the areas two small 10.ft long-x-4.ft wide-x-3.ft tall personal raised bed garden set up to produce your own personal fuits and vegs as need for your personal use .. ..

the personal space area has a run your fence completely around the land with a small metal cattle gate guard unit to allow you to drive over but keeps out large animals also .. the 5-high metal cable stand wire fence with metal post is design to make your land as yours from the others in the area..


now that leaves a area the sized of 40.ft long -x-38.ft wide to do something in ..you could lease it out to someone for part of the garden or have someone run chickens on it ..

the idea is crazy but i wonder if it would work ..
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Old 10-20-2010, 01:09 PM
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don't forget..if your car is a buick roadmaster stationwagon (great deals on those these days)...you can plant raised box beds on the car's roof !! That's another 1/3rd acre right there
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Old 10-20-2010, 02:51 PM
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That guy and his family are a true inspiration. They are a perfect example of good self sustainable prepping. Let's hope he can protect it all from the hungry mobs if the time comes.
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Old 10-20-2010, 03:03 PM
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My HOA would never EVER allow this. I can't imagine many new neighborhoods that would. They all want the yard to have 1 tree and 4 flowering bushes and 4 evergreen bushes and that's it. Heck, I'm not even allowed to paint the mailbox. :-(

I do enjoy seeing what is possible though.
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Old 10-20-2010, 05:33 PM
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This amazes me too.

Growing up, I had a neighbor that his whole backyard was a garden.
Every bit of his small yard was used.
He would share with all the neighbors what he couldn't eat.

He was a nice guy but don't let our kick ball go into his yard or he kept it.
We all thought he was mean but only later when we weren't kids anymore did we appreciate his efforts.
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Old 10-20-2010, 08:36 PM
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I started a seperate item on this british documentary about sustainable farming on several acres, but figure it might also do well here.
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Old 10-20-2010, 08:44 PM
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in a 20x15 back yard my dad did 15 stalks of corn purple potatoes 4 plants worth 2 types of matos 4 plants worth 2 types of beans 6 planst worth two grape vines and a line up of herbs

when i was younger it looked like a lot
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Old 10-20-2010, 09:40 PM
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Those folks must be selling some gourmet items and purchasing some staples with the proceeds to state that 4 adults are self-supporting on 1/5th. of an acre.

It doesn't add up.

Their lot is obviously bigger than 1/5th. of an acre. They are just counting the area of the planting beds to come up with the 1/5th. of an acre logic, likely don't count the footpaths either.

I really wonder about outside inputs to their system.
Old 10-20-2010, 11:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hillsidedigger View Post
Those folks must be selling some gourmet items and purchasing some staples with the proceeds to state that 4 adults are self-supporting on 1/5th. of an acre.

It doesn't add up.

Their lot is obviously bigger than 1/5th. of an acre. They are just counting the area of the planting beds to come up with the 1/5th. of an acre logic, likely don't count the footpaths either.

I really wonder about outside inputs to their system.
They did say they sell salads for $13,00 a pop. They have a yuppy customer base obviously. lol

They pull in $33,000 a year from their produce, wheather they use that to buy other goods or not they are still self sufficient imo since it was their garden that made that money.
Old 10-21-2010, 02:51 AM
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Very cool, thanks for sharing!!
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