Monday, November 29, 2010


Not a great picture but it's the great grands petting the new goats on Thanksgiving Day.

There were trays of walnuts and almonds, apple slices and pomegranate seeds, pickles and olives set out on the table. My grand daughter came bringing the deliciously cooked turkey and pumpkin pie. I brought out the cauliflower salad and apple nut salad and made the gravy for the mashed potatoes. I had sweet potatoes and mashed potatoes ready. The turkey was carved and everyone settled with plates of food in front of the fire. The children ran about my little farm and then would come in to warm by the fire. They explored the pond, chased the chickens and enjoyed a day in the country. A day of simple country pleasures on my little farm.

When I was a child my mother used to say, "Clean your plate, there are children in India starving." Just this week I saw a show called, "Cooking Dangerously", about people who have marginal lives and how they cook to survive. There was a segment about India and the caste system that still exists in practice if not in word. Those on the lowest caste system must live only on rice cooked on cow dung pies. The children make the fuel from cow dung, water and straw and dry them in the sun so the rice can be cooked. They must work 12 hours in back breaking labor harvesting rice for the richer class in order to just eat. They have no hope of ever owning anything. Other lower caste members must live off the mice and rats they hunt in the fields. They roast them over a few twigs in a fire.

This same show went to Venzuela where the super rich pay $85K to be a member of a golf club. Chavez is trying to develop food security for the poor with organic gardens and giving land to the poor. Unfortunately all the poor can do is squat on the land as they have no money or seed to plant without paperwork of ownership. They have huge soup kitchens where the poor can go with their containers and get meals to take home to eat. The rich complain about these programs for sure.

I have a small holding of land that I bought for little compared to what land in the state I lived in. I am continueing to plant trees and other food bearing plants that I hope will create my ideal. The scripture that says, "Let everyman sit under his own vine and fig tree." I have no desire to pretend to be someone important, I only want a measure of security and peace.

I believe the caste system is alive and well. The early pilgrims came here to get away from the oppresion of the rich and arrogant religious leaders. Yes, today the average person is laboring for the rich and all the comfort and security comes from debt not real ownership. Let's stop pretending we are kings and queens and realize that real goodness comes from being grateful for what is real and in harmony with nature.

Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Cool Island in Tucson

null Here is an interesting article about an area in Tucson, Az that is planting lots of trees and creating a cool and interesting living area.

Sunday, November 21, 2010


Here in the desert finding enough mulch is a constant problem.  I spread the horse droppings and now the goat and chicken droppings in areas I want to grow.  When I can get old hay I also use that or my bamboo leaves after harvesting the poles, make good mulch.

A couple of weeks ago friends were at a recycling place and they met a tree trimmer .  They spoke up and asked what they did with their wood chips and leaves and  got a phone number.  I called hoping I could get them to dump some on my property.  They said they dumped on property about two miles from me and I could get as much as I wanted.  I was given an address and went out there.  Like a huge gold mine there was about five acres of piles of chips and mulch.  What a resource.  I have been making at least one trip a day to
bring a truck load of mulch home This is going down over weeds to stiffle their growth and preserve the nutrients in the soil.

Mulch is like water.  It grabs rain water and holds it.  The ususal desert down pours will be absorbed rather than run off.  I will get pictures soon but I must say I am very happy.

My way of handling the mulch is to put a small tarp in the back of the pickup .  I carry a rake and a childs quilt/bedspread.  I rake the mulch onto the bedspread and lift it onto the truck bed covered by the tarp.  When I get home I simply open the back after parking where I want the mulch and pull the tarp.  The mulch drops in piles on the ground and I rake it out.  

If you need mulch check with local landscapers who have chippers.                   

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Equal money

This morning I read this article from a group called Desteni out of New Zealand.  They are trying to start an equal money society and they have modeled it basically like a MLM.  You pay for your lessons about $250 and then you get 10 others to subscribe at the same price which gives you $2500.  I don't quite understand how you get the residual pay from your downline but anyway it is supposed to give you financial freedom eventually.  That said. 

I started wondering what would happen if you did that with trees?  You plant 10 food bearing trees and convince 10 others to do the same.  You don't get the trees but it seems like if we continued to do that we would have food forests doting our land.  Just a thought.  If all your downline was local and you all shared your profits, each 1/10 to the community group that might lead to food self sufficiency.