Winter is almost over, yet at the beginning of this season we were determined to bring more greens into our home during the cold months. We focused on microgreens and experimented with several methods. We used two mixes from Johnny’s Seeds, one was mild and the other spicy, mostly brassica mix. Continue reading “Winter Starts and Microgreens”
Scott is a Graduate of:
PDC Course #62 – April 2016
at Heal the Planet Farm, Koshkonong, MO
Sold his legal practice in Arizona and retired early to pursue a life more meaningful to him.
Moved to Missouri and is establishing his own permaculture homestead on 6 acres. Just got the URL… Inwood Gardens LLC.
Has already provided legal, permaculture design and managerial consulting/services to Heal the Planet Farm.
Bridget is Graduate of:
PDC Course #38 – Jan. 2013
at Midwest Permaculture, Stelle, IL
Created the game “Adapt” to make permaculture learning fun and easier to understand
Presented at the International Permaculture Convergence, 2017 in India
Environmental Landscape Designer (inner and outer landscapes)
Ian is Graduate of:
PDC Course #60 – Oct. 2015, Grass Valley, CA
Teacher Training #7, July 2016 in Stelle, IL
Youth Educator at University of Minnesota’s Landscape Arboretum
Creator of the ‘Internal Landscape Design’ workshop
Founder/Owner U&i LLC
Kate is Graduate of:
PDC Course #4 – Oct. 2007
at Midwest Permaculture, Stelle, IL
Founder and Host of the Madison Area Permaculture Guild
Permaculture Designer and Community Organizer since 2008
Awarded: Oxfam Woman Community Leader
Below is the full design map of our Midwest Permaculture Home. Click on the picture to enlarge and zoom in on any details that interest you.
Click on Above Image to Enlarge or Save if you Like
Click Here to View a PDF of Each Layer as it Develops
or Download to your own computer by right clicking, then – ‘Save link as…’
We created the video below for a local-food summit which we were invited to co-host. It includes many pictures and information about our (Becky and Bill Wilson) reasons for starting Midwest Permaculture and how we designed and evolved our own home. The blog-post that follows is a condensed version of this hour-long video presentation.
Hello All. Our natural building workshop this weekend was a great success.
Hassan Hall, our natural-builder friend from Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage, taught a great hands-on class this past weekend here at Midwest Permaculture.
Everything was ready to start the next phase of construction on the first of 9-small earth shelters we have planned for EarthCamp Village. It was now time to put the rough coat (or base coat) of earthen ‘plaster’ on to the walls of clay-slip-straw that had been packed in last fall. Continue reading “Natural Building Workshop Successful”
This is an April 2016 Blog Post on how we built a Thermal Mass Rocket Stove at Jordan Rubin’s ‘Heal the Planet Farm‘.
(We cover the foundations of rocket stove building at every Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) course we host.) Schedule of Upcoming Courses
We call it the Epic Greenhouse Rocket-Mass Heater because of it’s sheer size and multiple modifications we designed into it. The whole stove is built around an 8″ flue system that exits outside of the greenhouse below floor level, under the greenhouse end-wall, and then turns towards the sky.
Designed by Bill Wilson (MWP) and Kevin Kepplinger (HTP Farm)
Construction and Design Assistance from Heal the Planet Farm Team (All are Midwest Permaculture PDC graduates)
The key modifications we made to this stove that are not usually found on more traditional rocket mass heaters are:
- The feed chamber is very large capable of holding full-sized firewood logs so it can be loaded to burn for up to 4 hours at a time and produce a lot of heat.
- The thermal battery or thermal mass is below grade and insulated so the heat will not wick into the soil surrounding it but instead radiate up to keep fish (aquaponics system) and bedding plants warm even in the dead of winter.
- We installed a multiple-speed flue fan and a flue damper near the end of the exhaust pipe to give ourselves greater control over the speed of the exhaust and even the burn. We can slow the exhaust down to hold the heat in the thermal mass longer when it’s hot or speed it up when we need a stronger pull to get it started. We know this is unorthodox and a bit like cheating, but it’s very helpful and the fan is variable speed using very little electricity.
At the last minute this winter we decided to tap our mature maple tree (just one tap) and boil off some sap to make a small amount of maple syrup. I was equally interested in building an experimental rocket stove as an evaporator with the materials I had on hand. It worked great!
With some landscaping bricks, a dutch oven and a bit of home-made cob we had our stove chugging along in about an hour… maple syrup in 5 hours. 3+ gallons of sap made 1 cup. of syrup. Here are some pictures:
Here is a brief picture summary of our
2015 Winter PDC at Midwest Permaculture in Stelle, IL.
As expected, during a winter course with high temperatures below 32 degrees, we did not spend a lot of time outdoors but we did manage to capture a few pictures of these activities.