rmh pyronaut event alternative dentistry formidable vegetable band self sufficient life online herbs course
Permies likes southwest usa and the farmer likes Mendocino & Humboldt County CA permies
  Search | Permaculture Wiki | Recent Topics | Flagged Topics | Hot Topics | Zero Replies | World Domination!
Register / Login

Only 72 hours left for the Early Bird Prices!
Click HERE To Register!

permies » forums » regional » southwest usa
Bookmark "Mendocino & Humboldt County CA" Watch "Mendocino & Humboldt County CA" New topic

Mendocino & Humboldt County CA

Jeff Mathias

Joined: Feb 19, 2009
Posts: 124
Location: Westport, CA Zone 8-9; Off grid on 20 acres of redwood forest and floodplain with a seasonal creek.
I am looking for resources for Mendocino and Humboldt County. I hope in searching for these resources that it will benefit others who may come after me so please do not feel you need to limit them to just my criteria.

It is time for my expecting wife and I to move on. We intend to home school and I think we would both like to work for ourselves from our home. I love working with plants and animals so small scale farming, CSA, etc. are certainly some of the things I am kicking around but not limited too.  I have many different interests and I believe working from a homestead or farm will allow me to better pursue these interests.

One of the main things resource wise I am looking for is a way to ask or gauge what sort of value I/we can bring with us, what are the areas missing or lacking or needing in these communities? How can I get in touch with the locals to find these kinds of things out? We are looking at moving sometime around August of 2011 so I have some time for this.

Currently we are looking at the following areas: Albion, Ft. Bragg and Willits. We are pretty open though providing we can be less than an hour from the coast. Inland is preferable as growing and raising some livestock are high on my list even if it ends up being just for our use and I would like to be out of the influence of the Coastal Commission.

I will add to this thread tomorrow the resources I do have already which basically consist of online newspapers, government agencies and local websites for things like local CSA's and food forests etc.

Forums would be excellent if anyone knows of any. Anything else would be appreciated as well.

Thank You,


"Study books and observe nature. When the two don't agree, throw out the books" -William A Albrecht
"You cannot reason a man out of a position he has not reasoned himself into." - Benjamin Franklin
Jeff Mathias

Joined: Feb 19, 2009
Posts: 124
Location: Westport, CA Zone 8-9; Off grid on 20 acres of redwood forest and floodplain with a seasonal creek.
Online News Mendocino County:

City/County Websites Mendocino County:

Food Forests,Farmers Markets,CSA(s), etc. Mendocino County

Unfortunately I do not have much information at all for Humboldt county as it only recently became a serious consideration. I will post additional resources as I come across them.


Joined: Dec 01, 2009
Posts: 211
Location: Northern California
I'm currently living at Emerald Earth in Boonville as a work-trader. There are eight member adults living here full time, as well as a three and a four year old, plus seasonal work traders and visitors. We grow food and raise livestock—we don't provide all of our food needs but we're working toward it. The community is stable and organized, with consensus-based decision making that actually works reasonably well. Because it often comes up when I tell people I'm living at a community in Mendocino, I feel compelled to add that I haven't noticed any drug use by anyone here, other than the occasional beer with dinner.

The main land-based economic activity is natural building and teaching workshops. Most people here have a job in town for a few hours a week as well, but several people are working toward sustainable land-based income streams. The land is 189 acres of edge of redwood forest and oak grassland, only a small area of which is gardens and homes; the rest is being allowed to recover from a destructive logging and sheep regime of the last century. I would say that people here devote a lot of energy and time to community projects, but we all have a lot of fun doing it. I think we're about 45 minutes to an hour from the coast, if I recall my last trip, and folks forage the coast for mussels, sea salt, seaweed, and abalone (all sustainably harvested). Weather-wise we have more of an inland climate, but we get a marine fog on some summer mornings.

If you're interested in learning more about the community and/or paying a visit, check out emeraldearth.org. A great way to see what is happening here and get a sense of how you might plug in is to come to a work party—our last one of this season will be October 23-24.

Joined: Jan 20, 2011
Posts: 2
There's a lot of information about living and working in the Humboldt County region (Q&A between outsiders and long-term locals who really know) at the City Data forums.  Try city-data.com/forum/111942-what-do-you-think-about-Eureka-8.html, for an ongoing conversation about the whole Eureka-Arcata-McKinleyville and inland area.  There's a lot of fairly inexpensive agricultural and forested land just inland from the coast (stay out of the tsunami zone as well as Coastal Commission jurisdiction) that's still within reach of major services such as hospitals and cultural activities centering around Humboldt State University and College of the Redwoods. 

We fell in love with the area while our daughter was at college there, and are planning to retire up there in a few years and settle in with some permie-farming including poultry and a couple equines and of course our dogs & cats.  It's temperate rainforest (lots of rain & fog but apparently the summers get little rain) with redwoods, spruce, fir and pine forests and a lot of open pasturelands.  Inland, take a look at the Willow Creek area -- a lot of organic small famrs around there, and supposedly the north coast home of Bigfoot(!).

Also check out the North Coast Growers Association, Community Alliance with Family Farmers, and the North Coast Co-op.

Land & home prices are affected by the area's long-term lack of employment since the timber and fishing industries have declined, and yes, the illicit cultivation of marijuana is a major shadow industry but you don't have to actively participate.  For a weekly snapshot of life in the area, look up the weekly local paper on-line, the Arcata Eye.  Real news plus a lot of fun, tongue-in-cheek reporting, community life, etc.
Jeff Mathias

Joined: Feb 19, 2009
Posts: 124
Location: Westport, CA Zone 8-9; Off grid on 20 acres of redwood forest and floodplain with a seasonal creek.
I haven't had time to get back here to permies.com much lately. Thank you for your replies I did take note of them at the time and I do/did appreciate the information. I do have a few additional resources I will try to add when I have some more time.

Boy can time fly. When I originally posted this my wife was still pregnant, now my son is 15 months old. It took a little longer than we thought and it has not always been easy but we have found a beautiful piece of property near Willits, CA (Mendocino County) that should be perfect for everything we are looking to do in the future and expect to be putting in an offer very soon.
subject: Mendocino & Humboldt County CA