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  • This is interesting, thanks for sharing. We don't have ducks yet, but I'd like to get some, so I'm looking out for more information to find out what to expect.

  • I've heard of charcoal as a whitener, and considered using some from home but was unsure of what type of wood to use… it's good to know somebody else has had success with this method!

  • Good luck to you. We moved from northern Vermont to central Florida 22 years ago. I am still a Vermonter at heart but the weather is much easier on the old body here. You get used to the changes and move on. I do wish we had some mountains though.

  • Thanks so much! We're starting to clear land for our home soon so we're super excited. I do love New England, we actually just finished college in VT but I can see how a lot of things will be easier for us farther south. West Virginia still has some mountains thankfully! Do you homestead in Florida?

  • I love tiny homes but they seem to be suitable for only individuals or couples. Think large homes can be beautiful but I don't have the energy to clean and maintain one. Lee and I have our older mildly autistic son named Daniel and rarely a guest stays over. We don't use all the space in our current home so one somewhat smaller or a different configuration will do. Two to three bedrooms suit us. One and a half bathrooms or more works. I pretty much have to go to the bathroom as soon as I feel the urge since I had our younger son Thomas who unfortunately died 7 weeks after his birth four years ago. Doors and locks would be useful. Daniel loves to soak the floors so areas with a sink need a lock and something blocking him from opening it by sliding something in between to disengage the lock. He keeps leaving our fridge door open so a locked door is good there or a lock that keeps him out (he broke off child proofing when he was a toddler and now he's 7). Lee needs a sound proof room to sleep in as he's a light sleeper and the slightest thing wakes him up. He also needs a workshop to work on projects. I need my own space as I'm an introvert and my alone time is when I recharge. Just need enough room for a tv, my video game consoles, my books, my collections (most are small and only have 5 or 6; largest one is my books but I'm switching over to ebooks which take up less space), and room for my kettlebells and the space to swing them. Need a fenced in yard or enclosed sun room to function as a play room (plan to have sand, water, slats, rock climbing, swings, and a mini trampoline, floor that drains away spills and padding to keep him from getting hurt if he falls and if indoors wouldn't have to worry about him running off, he could still play when the weather doesn't permit, and wouldn't have to worry about bugs that sting or bite). Daniel likes to run off and I can't catch up to him (my right foot is broken from a fall I had a couple of weeks ago and my bust is still too large post breast reduction). He's already ran off a few times. First time thought he was in our yard or our neighbor's. The second time didn't know he could open a window by himself as most of ours require two people to open them. The third I was looked away a moment to do continuing school paperwork that had to be turned in quickly at a playground (normally check our mail when we drop off Daniel as the school bus so got to the mail late that time). This was before my breast reduction and back then had breathing problems (one particularly active day I stopped breathing for a few minutes) and debilitating spine pain when I was more active than usual). The police told me if there's another time they will take him away and arrest me.

  • Wow sounds like a busy life. Those are definitely unique housing needs but it sounds like you have a plan and know well what will work for you. Are you hoping to build a home soon? Good luck with all your ventures and stay strong.


  • You must take after your Grandma Trudy as she had copper bottom pots and pans in the house on abbot st. Your Aunt Em and I used to have to polish them and if we missed a spot we would have to do them over. your kettle looks amazing. My mom and i use Twinkle for copper . Sarah

  • I have a huge box of wood ashes that I've been collecting all winter from the wood stove. I think I'll try this. I worry about them getting the ashes wet though – would that hurt them? (Just thinking ashes and water makes lye)

  • I would keep them under cover but a small amount of water won't make lye. If they were soaked I would change them but even then when I've made lye I had to give it somewhere to leach to (drip out of the ashes). You could also mix just some ashes in with sand or dirt to lessen your worry. So far our chickens haven't really gotten ours wet even with the ducks in the same coop. Good luck!

    • I looked on Craigslist for free things and got the green plastic top to one of those turtle sandboxes. Then I suspended it over a smaller dust bath. That way, it stays dry year round.

  • Great info on sapping. My son, he's 11, wants to tap trees this year, so with all the online info we're collecting, I think we'll be able to handle tapping 2 trees to give it a try. I really like your idea of sharing other blogger's posts as a way to increase community. Way to go.

  • I just found your post so don't know if you are building yet but will comment anyways:) I would go at it backwards. List out what is needed for such things (canning jars, wringer) then ask if they can share a space with something else. (a drying rack can be hinged on a wall so will be flat when not in use, etc.) I would say build the house for you, not your company. There are usually quite a few options when it comes to housing others from sleeping bags, or an RV to a small guest cabin (that could also be the spinning/sewing studio?) I know I'm not answering your questions, but hopefully giving you ideas for options. Best of luck.

  • We've actually just been clearing and prepping the site. The real work will begin once it warms up a little more. Those are definitely some great ideas I especially like the idea of working backwards. We're still working out the exact details and may even being going with rammed earth instead of a cabin but we'll be going pretty small with room to expand later if we decide to. We are really trying to be in some sort of a home by next Christmas. Thanks again!

  • I completely agree! Foraging can really turn a bad day around. I get outside and feel productive. It puts me in a good mood to work on other projects. I love your blog by the way 🙂

  • We are about to build our cabin on our homestead and we will not have a microwave or a dishwasher. We plan to add solar in the late fall if funds permit and it makes you think of the electricity draw on everything! It will definitely be a change in lifestyle although I don't think we microwave very much….I guess you never know how much you do something until it's gone!

  • Our office at work was 89 degrees yesterday (it's an old building, no working AC in our office). I enjoyed mint leaves in my water to help cool me. Have you seen all the varieties of mint available at nurseries…apple mint, chocolate mint…they really are fun. Of course we have a wild mint that was transplanted, like you do. Love it!
    Thanks for hosting the blog hop.

  • That does not sound fun at all, love the mint in the water idea the though. For yet another mint related idea I love showering with Dr. Bronner's peppermint soap after hot days. I've only tried the chocolate mint variety but I would love to try more! Thanks for reading and you're absolutely welcome.

  • That's great! I love hearing from people in the same boat so to speak. I don't think we did either but there were still a few times when I went to use it and it was gone. I still don't miss it much though.

  • I wish I had realized how large comfrey grows before I planted it…but I still love it! We just started having warm temperatures last week and already mine are putting out flowers. Amazing plant…

  • I wish I had realized how large comfrey grows before I planted it…but I still love it! We just started having warm temperatures last week and already mine are putting out flowers. Amazing plant…

  • I like to call my mint "yardus interruptus" as it has taken over! You are right, it's nearly impossible to kill 🙂 Thanks for adding this to From The Farm, it's one of this week's favorites! Hope to see you again this Friday!

  • Thanks for the post. I'm lucky to have grown up in a place that fosters homesteading community. Still, I don't think I realize how much I actively get out there and participate.

  • Love this post! Because "homesteaders" are so DIY, we often forget the importance of community. We moved to our new home 18 months ago and one of my goals as we transform our home and land into a productive homestead is to connect with our community. We have great neighbors with similar interests and we are sharing resources, bartering, and just generally supporting each other. I definitely think we as homesteaders need to talk/write more about this. Even when we lived in the suburbs (and most of our neighbors thought we were a little weird) we shared – home-baked bread for home-made salsa, etc.
    Visiting from Homestead Blog Hop

  • Oh yeah, I have a tendency to really cram things in. You'd think I'd learn and it drives Scott crazy haha. Our comfrey has spread out of the garden and taken over about half of an old pasture. I love it though!

  • Great tips! I do as many of these as possible. We have a local organically grown food produce stand that just opened last year within a mile of our house. I buy everything local as possible. I would like to barter but so far haven't found anyone to barter with.

  • شركة بسمة الرياض تمثل لك احد افضل البدائل المتاحة امامك فى مجال شركات التنظيف. نحن نمتلك مجموعة من الخبراء والمتخصصين فى شركة تنظيف بالرياض ونحن نستطيع التعامل مع كافة المساحات المختلفة فلا يهم ان كنت تمتلك منزل او فيلا فأن لدينا خبرات كبيرة تمكنا من تقديم خدماتنا على اكمل وجه ولدينا عمال وفنيين محترفين ولهم خبرات مختلفة نقدم ايضآ تنظيف لواجهات الشركات والفنادق.

    عملية تنظيف الشقة ليست من العمليات السهل القيام بها كما يظن البعض انما تحتاج عناية خاصة حتى تتأكد من أن جميع الاشياء التي تحتاج لتنظيف قد تم حصرها ولذلك اذا كنت تبحث عن شركة تنظيف شقق بالرياض فنحن يسعدنا ان نكون فى خدمتك بتقديم مستوى جودة موثوق ومشهود له باراء الكثيرين. شركة بسمة الرياض قامت بتحضير وتدريب مجموعة من العمال المهرة الذين سوف يتشرفون بمساعدتكم وتقديم كل خبراتهم فى التفاصيل الدقيقة الخاصة بالتنظيف.

    شركة بسمة الرياض سوف توفر لك ما تريد بأفضل الطرق المتاحة حيث اننا نمتلك مجموعة من المتخصصين فى مجال تنظيف البيوت التابعين للقسم الخاص فى شركة تنظيف بيوت بالرياض. فنحن نحرص على تنظيف نموذجي لبيتك يجعلك تشعر بالفخر امام ضيوفك وزائرك فجميعنا يعلم ما قدر الاحراج الذي قد يتعرض له صاحب البيت فى حالة وجد الضيف فى بيته صراصير على سبيل المثال لكن معنا لا داعي للقلق فحصولك على بيت نظيف هو أول واهم الخطوات للحصول علي مكان خالي تمامآ من الحشرات لأنها لا تنتمي للاماكن المنظمة والنظيفة.

    هل تبحث عن شركة تقوم بتنظيف منزلك بشكل كامل بالداخل والخارج؟ شركة تنظيف منازل بالرياض هي تمامآ ما تبحث عنه فنحن نقوم بتنظيم شامل لمنزلك بشكلآ كامل حيث نقوم بالتنظيف الداخل لجميع غرف المنزل آي كان حجمها وجميع المشتملات الآخري كالحمام والمطبخ والممرات وغيرها وبالطبع مع مراعاة جودة خدمة عالية بالاضافة فى حالة رغبت فى الحصول على واجهة منزل راقية تعبر عنك وعن أسرتك شركة تنظيف قصور بالرياض.

  • My husband enjoys Sassafras tea compliments of the tree we have in our woods.
    I love the smell.
    Thanks for sharing your post at Our Simple Homestead 🙂

  • Great post! Last year we hayed about five acres by hand. One summer of that was enough for us, haha. It was doable but we quickly decided we needed to invest in some used equipment for our tractor since we go through a lot of hay, especially in winter (we have sheep.)

    • Thanks! Wow that’s a lot to be doing by hand! I bet that was exhausting. We’d like to have sheep some day too and I imagine then that we’ll be purchasing some equipment.

  • I see you don’t monetize your blog, i’v got idea how to earn some extra cash using one simple method, just
    search in google for: money making ideas by Loocijano

    • Actually I do. I just haven’t finished getting everything set up since our change of websites. We’ll also be setting up a sponsor opportunity page in the near future. Thanks!

  • Wow! We have a back pasture that we could get hay off of on occasion. I told my husband we could do it by hand and he thought I was nuts. Now, I can show him others do it as well. 🙂

  • A few years ago when I was homeschooling all three of my kids, we did a lot of needle felting. So many beautiful things you can create, and some of the pieces I have seen are truly works of art! I’m looking forward to the next season so I can back to crafting too, so you are not alone!

    • That’s great, the kids must have loved it. I know I would have. Thanks I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one crazy enough to love being inside crafting in the winter!

  • That picture of them baby chic’s breaks my heart the government don’t care about nothen and they are two faced cause if they catch someone abusing a animal you can go to jail or get fined lots of money and lose your pets and this is need to be , I agree it needs to be this way ,but look at this picture they need to be put in jail fined lots of money and these company’s are abusing these babys so I say shut them down, we can buy eggs off of the people not stores , I am not a homesteader but I support them and wish I could be one.

  • This was such an interesting read, especially about the mushrooms. I’m just too nervous to forage as I feel I don’t know enough! Also, I thought I’d mention a lesser-known preparation of greens – mustard, broccoli and cauliflower – called GUNDRUK. Used in Nepali cooking, you do a lactose ferment (a little salt and water to cover, then just let it do it’s thing), then dehydrate the leaves and store for use in winter dishes. I love not throwing out the bigger leaves once I harvest the broccoli for the season.

    • Foraging isn’t nearly as hard as you’d think! Aside from the stuff on my site and that I provided links for there are tons of resources! You might find a local group or check out Facebook foraging groups they can be super helpful and point you to resources specific to your area. If there’s anything I can help with feel free to ask too!

      Gundruk sounds really neat. I hate wasting anything so it would be perfect for us but fermentation is not my strong point! I might have to try it though.

      Maybe we can trade some tips.

  • I love “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle” as well. Hadn’t heard of the others so thanks for the recommendations. And I love the idea of a Homestead Reads Book Club!! Presently, I am checking out books from the library and not making time to actually read them. I have determined this is basically a winter activity for me while I sit by the wood stove but do have a healthy list I’ll be checking out again!

    • I know the feeling! After a busy summer winter can be so relaxing that I actually might be looking forward to it. Yikes!
      Hopefully you find some great winter reads and pass on your own recommendations.

  • I have been searching for all-natural teeth whitening and your article about charcoal is the third I have found. Everyone says the results are amazing. I think I will give the charcoal a try until my next appointment for in-office whitening and report back how things panned out.

  • I would discontinue using the heat lamp over hay/straw pronto. If you insist on using it move it higher above the hay/straw. I made some efficient water heaters out of 3/4″ plywood. They used a 25w bulb. I live in Louisville, KY so our temps are about the same.

    • Now that we live in West Virginia our birds don’t use a heat lamp I think they find it pretty toasty here! This post was written a few years ago when we lived in New Hampshire and temps hovering around -40 for a week left the ducks with frozen feathers. This was also partially do to the fact that our ducks came from a rescue and didn’t yet have good feathers, they do now 🙂
      Also since our move to West Virginia we haven’t felt the need for a heated water bucket. The ducks are pretty excellent at keeping the water open for everyone since it doesn’t get as cold here. Thanks for reading!

  • When you live in the city and your water is overchlorinated and extremely hard and tastes like dirty pool water, even with a filter, the only healthy, pallitable option are bottled water. Most big grocery stores (Walmart and cub in my area) have ultra filtered systems that you can refill gallon jugs for .39 each. It’s worth the investment to me.

    • By all means if your water is dangerous to your health don’t drink it. Obviously the suggestion was not directed at Flint residents. That being said I’ve spoken with numerous people who live in the town’s where bottled water comes from and they’re suffering. Their wells are dry so tap water is no longer an option for them. Meanwhile big bottling companies like nestle are lowering the water table even further with their deep wells. I also have met a lot of people who don’t drink the water in our area because it’s “unpalatable” when even though it may taste funny it’s still totally fine. We have a lot of sulfur which isn’t bad for you but tastes like rotten eggs until you adjust then you don’t even notice it.

  • These are great ideas! I’ve always wanted to get and try a percolator. Thanks for such a great post! Found you while browsing around Pinterest and I’m so glad I did!!

  • Thanks for this. I’ve been writing daily for nearly a year about our off grid life. We are still in the VERY slow process of building the cabin and have no garden or animals with the exception of the dog who has been around longer than the husband. This is a tough process.

    • Donna, It absolutely is a tough process but so worth it! Celebrate the small victories. I bet your cabin is going to be great and I’m in the same boat with the dog. She’s been with me for almost 15 years and grudgingly accepted Scott into our life 4 years ago haha. Also is your writing on a blog? I’d love to hear more about it 🙂

  • Sweet Annie, Artemesia annua, will reseed all over your property, and your neighbors’, too, if you allow it to go to seed. Also, many people are very allergic to it, so be advised.

  • This is a fabulous list – I did a similar one recently (100 ways) and you have some that I didn’t mention. Pinning for future reference!
    I hope it is OK to mention here – I run a monthly link party called Going Green and I would love you to join in if you wanted to so we can spread the green message as far as possible. Off to track you down on social media now!

  • This is a fantastic list! Thank you so much for putting it together. I never thought about rolling up toilet paper instead of using a q-tip. I bet that would work in most cases for most people. Thanks for sharing on the Waste Less Wednesday Hop!

  • Hmm, I wouldn’t have thought to look to see if things like qunioa or lentils would grow in our area. Our chickpea that we tried to grow was a bit of a flop, but hey, it was our first planting of our first garden, there were several flops! Thanks for sharing on the Waste Less Wednesday Hop!

  • I love every single one of these ideas. And while some may seem like it will only save pennies…pennies add up! Thanks for sharing on the Waste Less Wednesday Blog Hop!

  • Very interesting. I dont’ see building a house in our future, but it’s always interesting to see how things are made. Thanks for sharing on the Waste Less Wednesday Blog Hop!

  • So glad you posted this! I have been toying with the idea of a CSA and had no clue where to even start with the paperwork side of things. I will definitely be referring to this!

  • Yes yes yes to every singe one of these!!! I simply don’t understand why people do not adopt all of these ideas especially when they then complain how much their energy/food costs are. Adding this to Pinterest right now!!

    I run a monthly linky called Going Green on the first of every month and I would love it if you’d link in with the next one. #WasteLessWednesday

  • This post is so enlightening! Ginger is one of my favorite go-to natural remedies. It is especially useful to me when I have a cold or congestion. Thank you so much for sharing how to make DIY Candied Ginger And Ginger Syrup at the Healthy Happy Green and Natural Party Blog Hop. I’m pinning and sharing. Wishing you a healthy, happy year ahead!

  • My dream since I was a teen (I’m now 59) is to build a dome home. Right now, my husband, my mother (89) are living in a dreadful , Mobile home, with a despicable raised mound septic, that has never worked properly. I just spent the last 2 hours cleaning up my mother’s overflowing toilet, because the outgoing pipe must be frozen, AGAIN! Our problem is that our water level is very high, so digging a deep foundation (our frost level is 4′ deep, is a bit difficult. We will need to either put in a taller walk out style basement or make a very large hill to build the dome on. Then using composting toilets, we can then use the septic (without a pump) as a grey water system. Of course right now, we have about 7 feet of snow on the ground so nothing is happening now. Good luck with your project, you’re doing great.

    • I’m sorry to hear you’re having so many problems. I used to live in a mobile home and had problems with the sewer pipes freezing too! Snow can be such a bummer for homesteading it was one of the reasons we decided to move to West Virginia. It can be done though just keep after your dream and keep us posted 🙂 Thanks for your support!

  • I’ve just planted out some bare rooted blackcurrants and Jostaberries so I’m hoping for plenty of fruitful harvests over the coming year. You say about giving them a drink before you plant them – this is really important as they won’t survive if those all important roots dry out . We planted out a whole boundary with bare rooted hedge plans when we arrived in France and because it was on a dry, windy day we soaked the roots and then kept them covered right up to when we were ready to plant them in the soil. 10 years on we have a wonderful back hedge that acts as a wind break and is a fabulous habitat for birds.

    Thanks for linking up with #GoingGreen and I hope to see you on the next one on March 1st.

    • I’ve never even tried blackcurrants or jostaberries but I definitely want to! I hope you get an excellent harvest. Hedges are awesome, we’re hoping to plant one as a sort of living fence on our property.

  • We got two fruit trees by mail order for our allotment. We took great care in planting them and then four months later we got offered a better plot so he moved them. They took well but our neighbour had neglected his plot and weeds grew up. He then came along cut the weeds down and chopped the top off our plum tree with it!

    • Oh no! We never did see fruit from any of our trees before moving but it’s actually part of my dad’s property and he takes good care of them. He sent me pictures of peaches he got this summer that made me so jealous. I guess we’re in the same boat we’ll be starting a new home orchard this year.

  • I really enjoyed your post. We aren’t off-gridders but we do like to be as self-sufficient as possible. We keep adding more plants, and learning more skills. It’s a beautiful life.

    • Thanks! It absolutely is a beautiful and wonderful life. Plants I’d like to have is one of the lists I fear will be never ending 🙂

  • Very interesting! I liked the concept of a sleeping porch. Right now our “sun room” is the hottest in the house, but we keep everything closed up. I wonder how it would cool off in the summer. Although with Florida summers nothing really cools off without AC. Thanks for sharing on the #WasteLessWednesday Blog Hop!

    • Yes I imagine it may be less practical in Florida. Thankfully our new place is on a breezy hilltop.

  • violets have been used by country herbalist to take down internal swellings and swellings due to infections… Helps with toothaches also.
    Candying/sugar violets are not used so much for candy per say..but rather they are stunning decorations for cakes and cookies etc….

  • Holy cow! It looks like we are following the same path, and you have listed so many important items on this list. We are building an off-grid home and will be using passive solar to cool our house in the summer. By opening low windows downstairs in the early morning when the air is cooler and also opening windows on the second story loft, the hot air is vented out the upper window by convection, drawing in cool air and cooling the house. On days we know are going to be really hot, we can put a box fan in the window to speed up the process. Then, when the outside temperature starts to heat up and the interior of the house is cooled off, we close up all of the windows, leaving one window upstairs on the north side of the house cracked just a bit. We will also have a solar powered attic vent to keep the upstairs cooler. Knowing that our walls will be concrete and 12 inches thick, which helps to moderate temperature, and also the fact that it rarely gets above 85 degrees at our house site, we are confident that this “passive” system will work. Thanks for stopping by my blog today. Hopefully we can keep in touch! Subscribed.

  • thank you for this thread. I want to grow some protein! I am wondering if groundnuts, yellowhorn, or carolina pea bush have protein? my idea is to have things that are “sort of” ornamental, that also provide a protein source for extra food! All of your ideas are just wonderful and I am so glad to have found this article. So well done, and thank you!
    Gina, zone 7A New Jersey (edible landscaper!)

    • I’ve never heard of yellowhorn but the other two absolutely have protein. That sounds like an awesome idea. We’re rural so I don’t hae to worry but I know many urban gardeners have to make sure that their landscapes meet certain guidelines. Thanks for sharing your ideas!

  • I’m afraid I’m not blessed with a green thumb to grow my own vegetables 🙁 But I’m nonetheless impressed and inspired by your lifestyle and philosophy so thank you for sharing your stories and giving us the chance to learn something new.

    • Awww thanks for the compliment. I am a firm believer that a green thumb is really more about hard work and practice than any talent or skill. Don’t be discouraged 🙂

  • Many popular heirlooms are from Germany or Russia, and the conditions they prefer are generally cooler than our summers. This makes mulching, as well as having good composted soil, very important so the plant is fooled into thinking that the temperature is cooler. Mulched and trellised, plants stay healthy. Crop loss is under 10 percent

  • I live in Muncie, Indiana and there are purple violets all over my year. I remember violets from when my mother had them in Tucson, Arizona and I used to pick and smell.
    They had a beautiful smell but the ones in Muncie are a weed and don’t smell.
    I’m asking are these violets or weeds?

  • I’ve never seen or eaten ramps. Could you add information about identifying them in the wild, along with some detailed photos, so that I don’t pick the wrong thing and eat it?

  • We live in Virginia and I have my first batch of syrup underway. I can’t wait. I’m hoping it makes a great gin cocktail.

    Do you have a recommendation for how many flowers should be picked. I want to make sure there is enough to go to seed. I picked about 1/3 leaving 2/3 to do their thing. That’s probably conservative. Just wondering what harvest would be sustainable.

  • What about using some food-grade diatomaceous earth (diatomite) in the mixture with the sand/soil? It’s a good insect deterrent. I used to put a half-cupful in our coop in the holes where the chickens were already dust-bathing, and I had no respiratory or eye problems from the dust.

  • I had eaten this last century in my home country in Asia. This is first time I’ve heard that it is in New England. Do you sell/know who sell? Thanks so much

  • Hiw is this a complete guide? I was hoping to learn how and when to plant my seeds. The article gives great information, but the title leaves many questions unanswered

  • I have a habit of digging up, not all, but some of the wild violets I see growing around. These I plant in a small bed that’s as close to their natural soil as possible. This is what I use for myself. The kitchen, etc. I’ve had to be careful though, because my grandchildren and great grands will pick them too if they see me scarf one up as I’m wandering my yard.

  • Amazing article ! Extremely useful and helpful that’s provide with the useful information ,
    that’s why I bookmarked this page for get news feed with perfectly information in the next coming post ,
    Really appreciate thanks for sharing the post !!!

  • Are you able to process this (water bath can) to keep longer? Would make excellent gifts in the winter months.

    • I haven’t personally tried canning it but I believe you could. Look up directions for canning fruit syrups or simple syrups.

  • I’m loving your post about violets. Its one herb/flower I’ve not yet tried. My family and i escaped the UK craziness, with a voice in my head telling me to start a new life in Europe. &years on we have two home-ed children, farm and old house, goats and food. My garden has self seeded calendula for years and i have respectively used them as edge flowers for my beds. I don’t think i have found violets near me, and I’m always looking. I need to do some research, i suppose you can make syrup from any flower including calendula…. Thanks for your lovely post, here is my blog if your interested in wheat we do over here in Europe.. Blessings

  • I love everything about growing comfrey. So many uses for it, and it a pretty plant in your garden!

    • To be honest, I’ve never lived in a hot dry climate. However, I believe you could grow it. I would probably try to offer partial shade. You should also mulch it in well and water it fairly often to keep the soil moist.

  • Mine are in the house right now and keep dying off. I bought them as roots and didn’t have time to get them in the ground. Now it’s snow covered and frozen. I feel like I’m watering too much or not enough. They’re in a south window, I don’t know what to do. I hope I don’t lose them all. I started them in a hood soil.

  • This is so cool my friend! I must go back and read more and I am quite curious about your rocket stove. As soon as travel is a thing again we need to come back to visit.

  • I sell beautiful and unusual copper teakettles and coffee pots in my vintage Etsy store. In the past, I’ve used all of the above, but my hands-down favorite is Wright’s Copper Cream. I buy it by the 4lb tub! I just polished a “problem pot” yesterday that now looks brand new. I will add one thing to this blog – often I will get a copper piece that is sealed with lacquer. This must be removed before polishing. I use cotton balls and acetone (nail polish remover). The acetone will not polish the copper, but you can’t polish the copper with the lacquer still on it. Once the lacquer is gone, the pot is “OK”, but when I run it under warm water and sponge-apply Wright’s, it just explodes into a wonderful shine!

  • Thought you could only harvest the roots in a month with an R in it Sept Oct Now Dec. JAN FEB MARCH APRIL
    Thats what we were told !

  • I have comfrey growing in large grow bags and they look great. But i am wondering if the leaves are as nutrient rich as the one grown directly in the ground because the root system will not have the long tap root.

  • Is delicious! I will add 1/2cup of pickle juice next time. 🤔 wish they sold jars of just pickle juice lol

  • I use an american scythe, cut all the alfalfa and grass hay in our 5 acre orchard as well as all the surrounding landscape, we use a tractor drawn wheel powered sickle mower for 35 more acres. I can’t wait to cook up some Switchel. When I first read the “Hay Game” line I thought YAHOO a way to incorporate some of the fresh cut greens into a drink for me too! We make sumac lemonade, it is a very special drink right from nature.

    • Hay can be made using this method for all livestock. However, whether your hay is nutrient dense and appropriate for different animals depends on the field and the species growing in it.

  • There is another whole genre of food left off this list, bugs. Grubs in dead wood are found everywhere and they contain more protein per ounce than beef. You could list many edible insects like grasshoppers, ants, termites, etc.

  • Hello
    I have lived on a very rural 55 acre mountain top in southern West Virginia for 22 years. (Pipestem)
    I would have sassafras roots in my house, my very favorite scent. I have since moved to pa where my son is and can’t find it here.
    My question is do you sell some of the roots?
    Thanks much

    • Hello, that sounds like an amazing place to live! They do smell amazing, don’t they? I haven’t sold them in the past but I’d be happy to try. We used to have an Etsy shop where we sold plants and herbal remedies, but the fees have gotten outrageous. Now we typically just sell items in person. However, if you have an email address you could contact me with I could send you a PayPal invoice and mail them to you. I’d charge $5 per pound plus shipping. If that’s something you’re interested in send me an email at with your address and order details. Thanks and happy spring! Jordan

  • My adult daughter and I are looking to move to WV from South Florida. I searched for Permaculture farms and came across your site. This is super because we are vegan also, and gluten-free all for health reasons. We aren’t looking to be off the grid completely but we are getting into mushrooms and want to plant blueberries. I’ll look you up when we go to visit the area. Keep up the good work!
    Thank you!
    Lisa and Nina

  • Thank you for posting this on YouTube. Wow. I’ve always killed them in the lawn with…gasoline. An old man said…don’t try and dig them up, pour gas on them. My Bermuda isn’t growing yet, but I have several clumps of wild onions. I won’t kill them or cut them with the mower. I’m going to transplant them into my flowerbeds. Thank for the information.

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