Posts Tagged ‘Self Sufficiency’

Northwich - allotment gardens and recreation area beside Birdcage Walk. Seen from the footbridge over the railway on Northwich footpath 12. SJ 6528 7385 at 295 deg.

During the gardening ‘off season’, my plan is to write a series of encouragement and ‘how to’ articles with the beginner and wannabe gardener/homesteader in mind.  There is a lot of good information available for getting started down the road of increased self-sufficiency, but there’s even more misinformation and ignorance being tossed around out there. My goal is to simplify the process of gardening and homesteading to make it accessible for more people. It is my belief that nearly EVERYONE can grow some or all of their own food, regardless of your age, or where you live.

Sure, some situations require more thought and planning than others, but whether you live on a large acreage, in a suburban HOA controlled neighborhood or in a big city high rise, the only thing holding you back is you.  If you’ll join me, and stay the course, I’ll have you ready to grow by next spring. I guarantee it.

I hear regularly from people who say things like, “Someday, when we have some land, we’re going to do what you do,” or, “We’d love to live a more self-sufficient lifestyle, if we only had the land to do that.”

If you are thinking those, or similar thoughts, I have some GREAT news for you: you can get started right where you are.

Stop laughing, I’m serious.  Do some research and learn about the Dervaes family in California, who live on 1/10th of an acre and not only provide their own food, but operate a full time thriving farm from their suburban plot.

I know plenty of stories of families living self-sufficiently, or virtually so, from a quarter of an acre.

We’re all rather familiar with the “Victory Gardens” that sustained many millions of people during WWII.

And let’s not forget about the allotment gardens (community gardens) that dot the British landscape each spring through fall, where families can rent small spaces to grow their own food. The British Parliament has passed laws that require local governments to provide spaces for allotments, if there is a demand. Here in the USA, some towns and many Churches could make space available for community growing.

My point is, it doesn’t take acres and acres to become self-sufficient; it takes creativity, out of the box thinking and elbow grease. If you want to start growing your own fruits and vegetables, and maybe your own meat, fish and/or eggs, you don’t have to wait until ‘someday’. In point of fact, I looked, and someday isn’t on any calendar, somewhere isn’t on any map, someone isn’t in any phone book. There is today, here, and there is me (you).

Brittan and I began our edible suburb when we lived on ½ acre in a typical suburban neighborhood, under the watchful eyes of a Home Owners’ Association. In that location we grew tons of fruit and vegetables, made our own compost, raised rabbits for meat and manure, raised fish and even managed to sneak in a few goats and chickens from time to time.

I share that last paragraph to help you understand that I KNOW from experience what can be done. I’ve grown fish and vegetables in my garage, herbs on our back deck, kept rabbits in the basement, and once we even hid 150 baby chicks in our garage for 10 weeks.

During the next several weeks, I’m going to show you a step by step plan to make sure you can succeed in your own edible suburb, but it will be up to you to implement what you learn.

I hope you’ll join the adventure. Please add your thoughts and questions to the comments section, or email any questions to us.  Also, please email or comment and let me know some of the subjects you’d like to discuss. I’d love to hear from you. Let’s do this!


Read Full Post »


Read Full Post »

First, for those of you who read my first book, “IOU NO MORE”, thank you.  I had a lot of fun doing it and it’s been pure joy seeing the results and changed lives from those who adopted the principles for becoming and living debt free.  But it’s been 4 and a half years since that book came out.  Wow, where did the time go?

Last winter I updated it and like the results.  I will release “IOU NO MORE 2.0” this winter as an e-book.  Watch for that.

As usual, though, I digress.  I’m currently writing a book on how to live more sustainably and self sufficiently whether you have acreage or live in a studio apartment.  Lots of people want to grow some of their own food, but either don’t know how to get started or what they can do given their space limitations.  I am taking 6 scenarios; apartment,1/10 acre, 1/4 acre, 1/2 acre, 1 acre and 5 acres and imagining what I’d do with that space to optimize my opportunity.

It’s a lot of fun, so far.  I’m writing about gardening, livestock and even aquaculture ideas.  It’s going to be very practical and quite user friendly, but I’m having a problem.  I can’t come up with a title that I like.  So far, I hate all my ideas and I’m wasting too much time trying to come up with something, so I’m turning to you for help.  Please help me name my book.

I’m going to run a “Name Sam’s Book” contest through the month of September.  Along the way, I’ll try and drop some excerpts into blog updates to help get your creative juices flowing.  The first week of October I’ll pick a winner.  The winner will get a mention in the book, 3 free copies once it’s published and a year’s subscription you your choice of “Mother Earth News”, “Countryside Magazine and Small Stock Journal”, “Hobby Farms” or “Urban Farms” magazines.

No purchase is necessary and all ideas are welcome.  You can  to me or even add them as comments to this post so that the whole world can see your talent. Thanks in advance for your help.  Now, go out there and get creative!

Read Full Post »