Here is some information about the progress we are making with our outdoor shower house projects. With campers coming to our Stelle (Il) and Bending Oak (Youngstown, OH) projects this summer we want to have a way that they can take a warm shower using current sunlight (scrap wood) to heat the water. (More on solar vs. wood burning hot shower water systems below.)
The goals for our shower houses are 5-fold;
1. Non-permanent and portable
2. Knock-down for winter storage
3. Inexpensive (easily available or recycled materials)
4. Easy to assemble/duplicate
5. Attractive (Has to have a welcoming factor)
The first concept we came up with that cost the least turned out to be more of a job to construct than first imagined, may not hold up in a hard wind, and frankly, looks a bit tacky (to me). But the price is right at $65.
Prototype #1 – Tarp and T-posts
Continue reading “Low-cost, knock-down, outdoor shower house”
Erik Peterson – Permaculture Teacher/Designer/Builder
Hey permies! In this blog post, we’re going to get the skinny on rainwater harvesting…
Bill asked if I could share with you all the process of designing and installing the rainwater catchment system we constructed for the Youngstown, Ohio permaculture project that Bill and Becky have been leading, known as Bending Oak. So herein we will explore the nuts and bolts of our own install, and give you the essential information that you will need to consider in designing a rainwater harvesting system of your own.
Besides teaching and designing with Bill and Becky, and co-running my farm, Fern Hollow Farm, my business, Wood & Stone, LLC (also on FB) has been involved in the Bending Oak project by tending to the fruit and nut orchards, finishing the construction of the shipping container barn, installing native wetland plants around the newly installed pond, and more. Now that the rain catchment system is in place, we’re one big step closer towards off grid, self-sufficiency! So let’s dive in…
Continue reading “Rainwater Harvesting – Bending Oak Project in Ohio”
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.
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 Image to Enlarge (and 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…’ Continue reading “Residential Design for Midwest Permaculture Home”
Click on Image to View the Full Size (10MB)
Feel free to download, forward, print or share with others. It’s really interesting.
As part of the full design for Jordan Rubin’s Heal the Planet Farm in Koshkonong, MO, we will be creating a demonstration food-forest walk consisting of 6-distinct plant guilds, all designed by Midwest Permaculture’s official plant guy and co-author of Integrated Forest Gardening, Bryce Ruddock. We thought you might like to take a closer look at the final design sketch which was digitally crafted by our fellow teacher/designer, Milton Dixon.
The earthworks and tree planting are scheduled to happen either this fall or in spring of 2016. We’ll keep you posted.
Below is the overview image of where the guild fit into the larger Zone 1 area.
Bill Wilson Continue reading “Plant Guild Designs for ‘Heal the Planet Farm’, Missouri”
We have been invited by a family in Southern Missouri to assist with the design of a 320-acre farm. They want to transition the land into a permaculture landscape capable of producing a wide range of perennial foods (nuts, vegetables, herbs, fruit, etc.) as well as livestock (beef and goats).
Over generations, rain has slowly degraded this sloping landscape with a loss of nutrients and topsoil. It is not uncommon for a million gallons of water to wash off this landscape with a 1-inch rain. Continue reading “Bulldozer Digging Swales”
My mother and father-in-laws, Win and Mike, live on a beautiful and rugged piece of land on Colorado’s Front Range known as Table Rock Ranch. For over 25 years, Win and Mike have raised a small herd of Scottish Highland beef cattle on the 85-acre property using a largely pastured, grass-fed approach. The ranch lies on the high plains about 15 miles as the crow flies from the eastern slope of the Rocky Mountains and at about 7,300 feet elevation. The ranch is named for a mesa on part of the property called Table Rock, which is an easily-recognizable landmark in the area and which is an important Native American site. There is an authentic Native American medicine wheel on top of the mesa, which is still visited occasionally by members of the Ute nation. Table Rock was previously the resting place of a Native American holy man (who was exhumed in the 20th century), and may still be home to some as-yet unconfirmed Native American grave sites.
Continue reading “Permaculture Design Certificate Final Presentation – Table Rock Ranch”
Why a ‘Vision’ is part of this Permaculture Design
Every permaculture design begins with the vision that the owner or owners have for the property. We will end up with quite different designs for the same piece of property should one owner have the vision of creating a pick-your-own fruit operation where another wants to create a healthy and safe environment for aging horses. Some elements will be the same – many others will be different.
Here are the sorts of questions we will ask an owner(s) when starting a permaculture design for their property:
- What is your vision for the land over the next 5 years, 15 years, 30 years, 60 years, etc.
- What do you expect or need from the land?
- Food (how much of annual consumption?)
- Some income?
- A lot of income?
- Family stability?
- (List all others)
- Will the focus be on buildings, plants, animals, agroforestry, education or something else?
- Does the vision include the public? In what ways?
- What resources are available (labor, design talent, experience, equipment, money, etc.)
- Is developing a piece of property really what you want to do with your time and money (your life energy)? How does this fit into your life’s work?
Continue reading “CSC Vision for Property”
Why a Design Overview is part of this Permaculture Design
When creating a permaculture design for a client, it’s very helpful to give a clear and brief overview of the existing resources, goals and key elements of the proposed design so that they can see the bigger picture. It is also a very helpful tool should they need to explain their plans to family members, partners, investors or lenders.
Continue reading “Design Overview”
You can see and read more about our PDC Completion Course in an awesome blog post by one of the students in the course: These Light Footsteps – Permaculture Design Course Completion.
Wayne & Bev’s rocket stove mass heater
Continue reading “Pictures from our July 2012 PDC Completion Course”