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On Self-Sufficiency and Sustainability Part One: Grow Your Own Food

With the move to the new house being the chance to wipe the slate clean and carry over only the elements of the old house that we love and use regularly I have really been examining how we live.  Not only am I talking about the STUFF we take, but also the HABITS and ways of DOING things.  My uncle introduced me to the blog and website of the Dervaes family, and I have been thinking a lot about this chart I found on their site and how many of these elements can realistically be incorporated into our lives.  The point is not to try to change everything at once--that would be completely overwhelming and unrealistic.  The Dervaes Family has been living this way for over 20 years and acknowledges that it is an ongoing process and not something that can happen overnight.  But the more you incorporate these things at a slow pace over time the more likely they are to naturally become part of daily life and less of an inconvenience or something that is so much of a burden that it will be abandoned.

I will take a look at each of the 10 steps in a separate blog post, starting with #1:  Grow Your Own Food.

Since most of the construction and projects going on inside the house are not really anything I am qualified to handle, my efforts have been concentrated on the yards, both front and back.  One of the first things I did was to gather up all of the random cinder blocks around the property to build two planter beds in the enclosed garden area.  I have cauliflower, pumpkins, cucumbers, potatoes, red peppers, zucchini, tomatoes, corn and lettuce in the beds.
As well as a fig tree...
a peach tree (and an apple as well), which will be espaliered on the fence behind it...
 a baby olive tree...

and a few herb gardens with basil, mint, thyme, sage, lavender and rosemary.
 It will take a lot more work and a few more years of tackling projects one by one,  but the goal is to have something similar to the Beerhorst Family above
 or the Dervaes family above and below.
Whether you live in an apartment with an herb box in the window or on acres and acres with a full scale farm, you are taking steps to be less dependent on others and at their mercy as to how they grow the food you eat. 

1 comment:

lora said...

Thank you for the good times in your blog. I am often in the position to watch (again and again) those wonderful articles you shared. Really interesting. Good luck to you!

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