Watch my introduction video to my homesteading Vlog channel. Glad you made it here, please enjoy the videos and ‘how to’s and the stories and happenings on our Island, through the seasons and with our family!
The below are excerpts from my original post on homesteading which can be seen here: http://www.micahgallant.com/2014/01/25/the-homestead-idea
Broadly defined, homesteading is a lifestyle of self-sufficiency. It is characterized by subsistence agriculture, home preservation of foodstuffs, and it may or may not also involve the small scale production of textiles, clothing, and craftwork for household use or sale. Pursued in different ways around the world — and in different historical eras — homesteading is generally differentiated from rural village or commune living by isolation (either socially or physically) of the homestead
Our homesteading experiment currently includes the following which I consider some of the goals towards homesteading (and the list will never end probably):
- heating with wood – locally purchase from the next town over actually. Grown on island, supporting a local business – as opposed to support oil sands development or middle eastern countries etc by burning oil (wood is also cheaper!)
- powering what we can with solar power – chicken shed lighting. This is an ongoing and costly project if we want to expand it to powering the house. For now it will be a learning experience, test bed and emergency backup for critical things should the power go out
- Owning chickens -the chicks are for eggs right now. This year we’ll raise more meat birds, and then the dual purpose Chanteclers going forward
- Part of this is incubating our own birds – instead of relying on others to provide ‘seed’ birds, chicks for growing to keep our flock up in numbers, we will be incubating all our own. With this we will expand our own flocks and won’t have to rely on others. See my posts about our Brinsea incubator which is currently cooking round #2 of eggs, this batch a Star Cross red variety for egg laying
- Raising a pig or two each year – this will be our first year trying to raise pigs. Should be a lot of fun, a lot of learning and a LOT of meat at the end!
- Growing a larger garden – the attempt will be this year, for me at least, to greatly expand our garden and produce a lot more vegetables for food or feed or for sale. Our lawn is good at growing grass that I spend gasoline cutting, why not have it grow vegetables and not waste gasoline and in turn have it add resources to our family instead of subtracting resources (money / gas)
- Planting more fruit trees – back in the day, your fruit isle would be the orchard out back, not the grocery store. God grows this stuff for you if you just plant a tree so why would you pay for it? We are a crazy crazy bunch these days for purchasing stuff that literally does grow on trees :S . This year we will be planting two pear trees. We already have 4 or 5 apple trees on the go. The neighbour this year too will be planting an orchard. the only downside is that these trees are really more for the next generation, i.e. our kids. Because they take 10 or 15 years to really start producing lots of fruit. So this is for a future generation.
- Being able to pump or collect our own fresh water – check and check. We have a fresh water spring that i use for watering our chickens/ Since our river is tidal, it doesn’t really freeze much so access there is rarely out of the question. Plus we have an old hand pump well ready for action and does work.