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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
There is a possibility that i will come into possetion of a one acre field which i may place accomodation on (possibly a yurt) but that leaves most of the field clear.

Does anyone have any advice on how i should get started growing food etc (i know almost nothing) what tools, what should i grow etc.

any adivce will be greatly appreciated
 

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Permaculture is a method of planning your land into zones and then using horizontal layers to maximize the 3D space. Making a forest garden can be part of that and it's been well developed in the UK.

Forest Gardening

About Forest Gardens

And then there's this whole thing called Biodynamics which is pretty mind blowing.

How's the land? Is it level or sloped and do you have access to water? Is there or has there been a crop of some sort?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The land i beleive is slightly sloped and there is no current access to water although a water tank etc may be obtained? i plan to grow a lot of my food but stuff such as wheat etc i will not even attempt
 

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How many people are you planning to feed with this acre? A 1 acre garden is huge, and would be a full-time job for one person to maintain.

You'd be amazed and how much food you can grow with raised beds. I'd recommend building 5 raised beds, get some rain barrels to collect water, start a compost pile and start there, then next plant some fruit trees of some kind. Because if your going to be one guy living in a yurt, your going to be overwhelmed with vegetables.
 

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Build a cistren to catch rainwater for irrigation. Plant fruit trees and veggies. The internet can provide you with what you need to get started
 

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I agree with Kahn. You will be amazed how much food you can grow on 1 acre. You are not growing massive foods such as a farm would to have a cash crop. To be honest with you, I would not attempt to grow a 1 acre garden by myself. I would imagine it being a sunup to sundown project. I would start a compost bin/pile NOW to get a head start before next spring. I don't know about Vancover but can you plant winter cover crops there? Something that can be turned over in the spring to help nourish the soil and get it ready for a bountiful summer growing season. Of course, if your ground is frozen all winter, I would assume that would not be possible. If I wanted tons of veggies I would stay clear of crops that require a lot of space - like corn which produces a huge plant but only 3 or 4 ears of corn. There are lots of ways to save space, ie. cucumbers and melons that you train to grow on trellis and fashion a "sling" over the growing food and tie it to the trellis, use the "teepee" method to grow pole beans and vining peas and I'd go with raised beds where you can plant more plants in a condensed area. However, I am not fond of raised beds as in my experience they are expensive and require more water. But, I keep hearing that they produce more crop, so maybe I should give it a good try. Have you ever heard of Square Foot Gardening? I think that's the name of the book. Supposedly this book explains how to grow more crops with less land. Good luck to you. Starting your first garden is hard work but it will get easier.
 

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Boy Kronos said it thats allot of weeds to pull rows to hoe and vegies to harvest. I have an acre and 3/4 the house is on the front 3/4 and the rest is just bare land. I have a garden in the back it is about 30X100 feet and it is allot of work. I plan on cold frames 16X8 feet pressure treated wood frames 20"high. That will allow me to start early with my garden and end later if I use plastic and 1"PVC for a frame to cover them. I will do the whole garden this way and no more rows to hoe and less weeding. I had so many veggies I had to plow many under.





How many people are you planning to feed with this acre? A 1 acre garden is huge, and would be a full-time job for one person to maintain.

You'd be amazed and how much food you can grow with raised beds. I'd recommend building 5 raised beds, get some rain barrels to collect water, start a compost pile and start there, then next plant some fruit trees of some kind. Because if your going to be one guy living in a yurt, your going to be overwhelmed with vegetables.
 

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Put in a swale or two to trap water, plant your nitrogen fixers into the mound. I'd go with peas/beans and fast growing shrubs that bear fruit but that you can cut down for more mulch as the long term/slow growing trees and shrubs begin to take over.

It's a lot like what happens in nature but you can control and speed up the process. Herbs and legumes and daily harvest things close to the yurt with long term low maint trees and shrubs towards the outer zones. If the soil isn't that great then building it up with nitrogen fixers that get mulched back in, along with layers of composting and manure. Mulching really keeps the weeds at bay. Cuts out the light and replenishes the soil as things break down.

There are some great vids and books out there about permaculture and forest gardens.
 

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Since you're in England you might find a transition town nearby to see some low labour ideas on gardening/permaculture and for books and vids there's:

Green Shopping

Bill Mollison and Sep Holzer's are great men IMO.
 

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maybe a rain collecter and if you grow hydro you can re use the water or even use reverse osmosiss so you dont have to keep bringin in new water thats what i use and i only gotta replace what evaporates
 

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Chickens. A few smallish fruit trees. Grape arbor. Lots of raised beds. If you want to get fancy, add an aquaculture tank and use the wastewater as fertilizer. The most important thing is to capture as much solar energy as possible. No shade.
 

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A couple of swales will take care of water for crops but rain catchments from rooftops are a great idea, as well as a cistern.

Basically permaculture and forest gardens look to maximize food production while reducing input work as much as possible. Tilling isn't a good idea (to them) as you can sow plants that will bring up the nutrients, procduce a yeild, and put nutrient back into the soil once they are mulched. You're improving your soil, working less, and setting up the conditions for perrenials that need even less work.

Remember mushrooms too. They create soil, feed plants and trees, and edible ones are great to have and dry for winter.

Not all grains take up a lot of room. Amaranth and quinoa would be a must if I had the chance to do what you're doing.

And let things go to seed. It's amazing to see things evolve and adapt from season to season.

Man I'm jealous!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I dont know when this will happen.. the field currently belongs to my grandparent and doesnt want it leaving the family and would like to see it used..

i was thinking of a yurt as its not a perminant structure and i could live in it.. idealy i want it to be under the radar as possible..

i was thinking of water catcher painted in fade away colours such as green and brown possibly with cover plants..

i dont know about the quality of the ground but i would have to clear it first .. it was previously used for a few sheep but has been left untouched for the last few years
 

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Look for John Seymour's books. He was a proponent of permaculture and intensive land management long before it became popular here, and his books are great guides.
 

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By far the best book I've found on this subject is The Self-Sufficient Suburban Garden by Jeff Ball. It's now out of print but easy to find on the cheap on alibris.com. Very practical and methodical advice. He does not assume you're a hobbit living in a remote fertile shire. He assumes you have vinyl siding and wear loud shorts.
 
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