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Lacking Land?? This may work~

 
gardener
Posts: 771
Location: south central VA 7B
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Hi All -
I have a 100 acre "farm" in south central VA.  It's permaculture in total: food forests, swales, terraces and every other thing we can come up with.  Only 35 acres are under cultivation/homestead and the rest is either re-forested (destroyed in the 60s with haphazard timbering) or woods surrounding creek, springs & small forest river.  We're Certified Organic (for whatever that's worth these days) and Certified Biodynamic.  Our grow areas are broken into 2 major sections, the oldest surrounding our home and Wwoofer cottage and the other, about a 10 minutes stroll away, has another cottage, a terraced and swaled large hill (several acres), several ponds (one stocked and about 1/2 acre used for irrigation) and a future pastured area that swaled and planted with fruit and nut trees.  We're in the process of building a birthing barn (want to raise heritage pigs, sheep and chickens in the future) which will also house a kitchen and wood shop.  This 2nd area is the one I have a proposal for  I've explored too many options out there attempting to find one that fits what my hopes are for this upper area so I'm winging this one, but it seems to make sense.  I am hoping to partner with a couple or a couple people that have working knowledge of growing edibles, building soil (I've been working on it, but it's got a way to go) has a burning desire to be a grower/farmer, is hard working and capable of inspiring themselves.  

I am stretched too thin and want to basically turn this area over to a responsible person beginning this spring.  There is a 2 bedroom, greywater furnished cottage, an existing medicinal/kitchen garden and nothing by land in need of care.  There are literally a couple acres that could be used for a market garden type of set up.  Obviously, with my farm's certifications, I will be involved, but want to leave the bulk of the rest to someone (s) to tend, plant, build soil etc.  I will furnish the home, land, my insight as well as assist in marketing whatever is grown under my label (and of course certifications).  Whatever you glean from your production will be your $$ in exchange for working and maintaining this section of the farm.  I'm going to keep the ins and outs simple: I am in need of someone to help and I'll house you, provide dinner for you (we all eat dinner, round table style on the farm) give you the use of more than enough land to make a little money from a market garden, in exchange for continued development of this section of the farm.  All in there's just over 5 acres.  

Please check out our website and FB page:  www.cricketscove.net and FB: Crickets Cove Farm and Forge.  Applications are under the "Getting your hands dirty with us" tab
Thanks and obviously I'd love to hear anyone's thoughts on this.
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Posts: 307
Location: Stone Garden Farm Richfield Twp., Ohio
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We're having the same problem. We have a fabulous farm and museum, with a large income, and we've been unsuccessfully trying to find a partner(s) for years now. Just like you, we offer so much but it seems anybody suitable for someday running and even owning this place is dreadful hard to find. Seems most folks with any real gumption already have their own place. ...but, still, there must be someone out there. A couple things you could try is posting to more social media, especially www.ic.org. It's a shadow of what it once was. Fewer people are looking these days. Or you could try www.wwoofusa.org. But they too have many, many farms looking for help/apprentices/members/partners. It's kinda funny how a person wanting to wwoof posts a note there and usually within hours they get many offers and replies. It's almost like a pack of real wolves pouncing on a lamb. Seems the best thing you could do is move your whole farm to Oregon/California. There are many more people looking there than on this side of the Mississippi.

One thing I noticed in your situation is that on your previous year old thread, you stated "no children or pets". We have found that many of the folks looking have both. You may be severely limiting the available pool of talent if you still have that bar. You might want to rethink that.

Jim&Laura
www.stonegardenfarm.com
www.ohiofarmmuseum.com  

P.S. You might want to change the title of this thread. What you have doesn't exactly "call" to the willing.  
 
Marianne Cicala
gardener
Posts: 771
Location: south central VA 7B
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Thanks Jim & Laura -
Since this location is far from the main homestead, I wouldn't have an issue with pets and possibly kids.  ya think the title reflects a 4 a.m. post - I will address it.  Wwoof people spent Monday on our farm and they are most aware of the challenges at this point with Wwoofers & Farmers.  I haven't brought anyone on from Wwoof in years since we have a 6 month minimum and most are simply traveling from point A to point B with a week or 2 only for stopping points.  Good luck to us both - I know there MUST be people out there.....somewhere and with the current climate on the west coast, maybe the new matra will be GO EAST Young Man.  hahaha
Thanks
M
 
pollinator
Posts: 1054
Location: Virginia USDA 7a/b
218
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Marianne,

This is a very reasonable offer. It is sad to read the response that you are not offering enough. It pains me to see the current situation with young people enslaved by debt, I think that is a major source of the problem. Many of them are miserable of course but few have started the road to recovery, which includes a fearless moral inventory. It is easier to be mad at someone else than humbled by our own shortcomings.

I try to counsel the kids around me to avoid debt like the plague, unless you are getting something that you actually need and will pay for itself in a reasonable time frame. I respect you for offering knowledge and experience for free.  

The only recommendation I can make is that it may be beneficial to spell out more specifically how this interaction might blossom. If you have that size property, deeding over 5 acres after a time might be a reasonable incentive, as Paul Wheaton is doing. Many of the potential applicants need hope there is a way to independence, in which you may be able to play a role.
 
Marianne Cicala
gardener
Posts: 771
Location: south central VA 7B
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Thanks TJ!  I feel strongly that should anyone join us on the farm, that they leave better prepared for their future.  We've had interns stay here for over 2 years and today 1 of my all time favorites is heading out.  He's taking with him a business plan, marketing ideas, a farm name and appropriate marketing stuff, a list of contacts for where he is headed, some land to lease to start as well as plenty of "seeds" to get rocking.  I think that's only fair not to mention the "next generation" of growers is in desperate need of more earth friendly folks.
I can't disagree with the "land for the future" but will let time and individuals guide that path for us.  I am not wanting an intentional community here, but that is something I may certainly be open to, later.
 
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Hi Marianne. In a nutshell, I'm looking to relocate and am interested in what you are offering. I was raised on a working farm in Person Co. NC so I have plenty of experience. Right now, I'm helping an elderly couple maintain their property, house, ect. I am single but with a very well behaved canine companion. If you would like to start a dialog that would be great. Thanks.
 
Posts: 11
Location: Knoxville, TN and Island Falls, ME
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Hi Marianne

I'm an empty nester, activist and farmer wanna be. I've great energy  and a good leader as far as teaching and yoga goes. but I've no professional experience in working land

Is there room for someone to learn who has a deep interest in this? Ive worked 2 summers at my dear friends yoga retreat in main but it was mostly attending to guests, teaching and outdoors

I do have a great desire to build cob- considering seriously the boots program at Paul's place but wondered if I could get as much hands on with you all?

I live in Tennessee and travel often to Christiansburg and area. What else? I'm a yogi and very disciplined. My son, 11 is at UT. I do have a dog who stays with him, may want to bring him if this is a fit?

My Facebook is Ajeetyogaandhealingarts

Thanks!'
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My son and I at the quarry thus summet
 
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Are either two "farms" still looking for someone to work this land?
I have a green thumb , construction background , know some basics of off grid living , and I am willing to learn.

I want to destress from life , get away from the hustle and bustle of city living , and live my years in peace away from violence .

I am 41 , able bodied , and have two amazing dogs.

You may email me at darthhodge@yahoo.com
 
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Hi Marianne,
We are a couple, we just got a contract on our house to sell it. We hope to close on it soon and then look for land to start our own permaculture.
We saw your ad and thought that it could be a great internship of a few years hands-on experience. Are you still looking for a great couple?
Me, Gene, her, Marcelle, me the male, very much a do it yourself type, military background, bachelor's of science degree, who can do about anything and has dabbed in agricultural living before.
I can fix and build anything, a bit electrical, a bit plumbing, a bit concrete, a bit automotive, a bit creative and artistic, a bit advertising, a type of renaissance guy.
Marcelle, very mathematical, master's degree in education, strong and a great cook and loves to be outside and gets along with everyone.
We are fast learners as we are both intelligent and nice people with no drama, children or baggage.
If you are still looking, then let us know.
We just saw a patch of land in Tennesse that attracted our attention. But, we would be open to an internship first.
thorlordofthunder409@gmail.com
Thank you
Gene and Marcelle

 
Posts: 2
Location: Birmingham, Al.
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I f I was closer this would be exactly what I'm looking for, especially being able to work with someone who is established and willing to help and share knowledge... I'm sorry that no one has taken you up on your offer but I would have been passed excited and completely open to this opportunity.
 
Gene Rivera
Posts: 5
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Tracy Ross wrote:I f I was closer this would be exactly what I'm looking for, especially being able to work with someone who is established and willing to help and share knowledge... I'm sorry that no one has taken you up on your offer but I would have been passed excited and completely open to this opportunity.



We have been communicating back and forth and we are trying to decide as to when, how, and the timing of it all. We will be closing on our house on the 14th and then we have to hang around because of family issues until December after that, we will be ready to begin our journey. Yaaaaay! Also, we contacted Wheaton Labs and we also got a response from them and we are looking at all of our options first and assessing all the angles and possibilities. Thank you for your concern and I hope all is well with you!
 
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I'm a mother of 11.  I'm only 42, with 3 nesting partners... My oldest kids are over 18, there are still 7 at home full time.  I don't have a lot of experience.  It took this long for me to change my children's eating habits and learn the dangers of the way we're living.  I was so brainwashed.  Our lives were following the tech trend and my children were turning into zombies.  I have since eliminated handheld electronics and gaming systems for anything other than Netflix... which is still "evil".  I have started seeing the hell that's coming and I'm trying to change our lifestyle behaviors.  I want to spend more time in their faces, teaching them, than hearing about the drama they were exposed to at school.  We have raised beds in the back and some blackberries already planted and we're learning, but I feel like I am learning what the wheel is and I feel like I should at least know what the bicycle looks like, even if I'm far from riding.  

Right now I feel like I'm spinning my gears.  My time is spent chasing this bill and making sure I have enough hours at work.  On top of that, I'm keeping track of at least 4 younger kids' needs in regards to school, life, etc... The other 3 adults are my support.  I am essentially their matriarch and I delegate to them.  If it were not for them, I could not make it work.  I know what it is to understand diplomacy better than some, but I'm never too old to learn -anything anyone is willing to teach.

I have an incomplete nursing degree and a nuclear technology associates.  That won't help me on the land, but I'm hoping it does attest to a certain degree of intelligence and standard that I hold myself to.  I am very head strong and am also a self starter, but when it comes to something I don't understand, or need help with - I ask.  That's where all of you come in.  (Any interested in lending wisdom, skill and/or boots in the right direction...)

I don't have money for land.  I'm not asking for money for land.   I would like to learn what I can do currently in my backyard to start teaching my children, every day and getting them into the habits of learning that life is best lived working on real rewards, not financial ones.  Teach me... ?  My dream is to homestead and homeschool.  In regards to not having land... I want to have been a good enough example that if we find others willing to have us... that we'll have made good changes to our lives and actually be a helpful addition.  If anyone is open to 4 adults, 7 to ? kids (long story, I'm a mom...), and dogs (I'm allergic to cats... respiratory distress for indoor cats)... please... feel free to message.  I would be willing to put in work, but that would mean 4 to 6 hour drive and maybe weekend trips.. I couldn't see roughing it with a 2 year old in the winter.  We do Pennsic just about every year and can handle some heat, but *I* am not an Ice Queen... Letting it go would involve a LOT of shivering!  (and maybe cussing - I live in PA, but grew up in Texas and still ain't quite acclimated...)

Suggestions, thoughts, offers, pokes welcome... Thank you!!!

 
Marianne Cicala
gardener
Posts: 771
Location: south central VA 7B
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Hi Mona
You certainly have your hands full and a big Good For You for taking charge Of the dangers of electronics replacing life, which with all of those kids, it would be easy to plop them down with a clicker.
  I would suggest the you copy and paste your post as a new topic rather than on this thread.  This forum will certainly gift you plenty of input, suggestions and maybe even the venue you are
Looking for.   I wish all of you speed in finding a good solution.  Please keep me posted!
All my best
Marianne
 
Mona Mansilla
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Thank you kindly for the suggestion and will do!!!
 
gardener
Posts: 3013
Location: Upstate NY, zone 5
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Hi Mona, good to see you here posting on Permies!
 
Mona Mansilla
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Hey!!! ((((Air Hugs)))) ~ if permitted.  Glad to see you too!  Excited to be seeing more of you soon!
 
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