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I am a city dweller- HELP Options
crwmdpmr
#1 Posted : Tuesday, November 18, 2003 4:22:30 AM
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Posts: 134,494
Check with the city about buying
an abandoned home to fix up. They
are often for sale for just $1.00,
and be an urban pioneer.
Sheila
#2 Posted : Tuesday, November 18, 2003 5:19:18 AM
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And in what city are you dwelling? The options may vary from city to city.
Garden Lad
#3 Posted : Tuesday, November 18, 2003 11:49:43 AM
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Can you be a little more specific, Earthy? Are you in an apartment or a house? Do you have a yard available or not? Does the city you are in recycle trash? And, perhaps most of all if you''re both grad students, how much available free time to you have?
mikeg
#4 Posted : Tuesday, November 18, 2003 5:30:31 PM
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Some thing to be said for doing things right the first time. Now some would say you are trying to get advice on how to do that now and then others would say you are doing what you can with what you have to work with and would be better in the long run to do more when you can later
mikeg
#5 Posted : Tuesday, November 18, 2003 5:31:55 PM
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And welcome to the forum.
hunter63
#6 Posted : Wednesday, November 19, 2003 2:25:51 AM
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Homesteading is a state on mind, not a place, if the dream is to live in the country, start now by reading everything you can get your hands on. Gardening,raising animals,trying do it your self projects,etc. Collect the knowledge, tools,skills, amd money(lotts of money) for the day when you can make it work.
I have doing this for better than 30 years, it turns out that our little house in the city, with the garden,compost bins, heated self built shop/grarge(wood stove)paved drive( paving brick,salvaged)and a bunch of friends that have the same interest, is pretty comfortable. Do own land, but for some reason we haven''t moved yet. Mikeg has good advice with the "do what you can now with what you have",then work at the dream (what ever it may be)
Good luck
earthy44
#7 Posted : Wednesday, November 19, 2003 2:58:35 AM
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Ok, here are the specifics,
We live in an apartment building in Columbia, SC. We are within walking distance to where we work/go to school. Our building doesn''t recycle but the city does so we usually take cans/bottles to get them recycled elsewhere. We are reading a book called "5 acres and independence" which is a great resource as well as my husbands grandparents who used to be farmers. We don''t have the time or financial resources to own/fix-up a home right now, but in 2 years we might be able to own a home and I will at least start gardening our own vegetables them. Any other suggestions?
crwmdpmr
#8 Posted : Wednesday, November 19, 2003 3:24:33 AM
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Posts: 134,494
See about community center
gardening space or plot rental,
get involved in a food co-op,
or alot of towns now have tree
planting organizations to reforest
cities you could join, or start one.
Garden Lad
#9 Posted : Wednesday, November 19, 2003 12:24:29 PM
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If you want to get a jump on growing your own veggies, or at least some of them, the term "community" gardening space is a lot broader than you may think.

Some towns do actually have garden plots people can rent. Sort of like the allotment system used in England.

Check with your landlord. He might give you permission to start a rooftop garden.

Ask at churches nearby. Many of them have property that is unused, and will be happy to let you use some of it for a garden plot---particularly if you can tie it in with something they do; i.e., education for the children of the congregation, plant a row for the hungry, etc.

Ditto local schools.

You''ll also be surprised at how much you can grow in a windowsill or on a fire escape.
Galeshka
#10 Posted : Wednesday, November 19, 2003 7:31:15 PM
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And if you have a patio or balcony there is even more space for growing fruits and veggies......the hanging bags many people plant petunias in are also handy for strawberries and cherry tomatoes. 5 gallon buckets are great for full-size tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, etc...The only limits are space, light, and imagination. Happy planning!

Be well......
hunter63
#11 Posted : Friday, November 21, 2003 3:41:47 PM
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Posts: 134,494
You said that you were a city for the first time?
Does that mean that you weren''t a city dweller before? The book "5 acres" is a good start, if that is what you want to do. What are your long term goals? What are you going to school for?Will your occupation support you out of the city? Are you going to move back to the country?
All the gardening are very good it allowes you to practice and see what you can do. Recycling is good, if you keep your eyes open in the city, people throw out just about everything you can think of or will ever need. Problem is it''s not when you need it, and no place to be a packrat.( keep stuff)
Riding a bike is both easy on the pocket book and on the environment.
Some times is fun just to see what you can think of to get by, with out spending any (or very little money) Again good practice for the future.
Reading beats the drivel on T.V. I guess you get the picture, deside whats good for you and "Go for it"
DanR
#12 Posted : Friday, November 21, 2003 6:19:37 PM
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Earthy44:

You picked a good book to start with. An additional one is "One Acre and Independence". What grad school are you in?
andydufresne
#13 Posted : Saturday, November 22, 2003 4:12:06 AM
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Five Acres and Independence was intended as much to DISCOURAGE city slickers from moving to the farm as it was to help those that did.

IT IS, however, chock full of good info.

If this is your first time to live in a city what kind of lifestyle were you living before?
ajortolani
#14 Posted : Saturday, November 22, 2003 2:43:00 PM
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Posts: 134,494
We bought a book right here from Mother''s Book store called: How to Build Debt Free and found it to be extremely interesting. It is one man''s story but is full of good advice & tips and how to build slowly but surely, debt free. Is great if you are not in a hurry or have alternative housing while you build.
earthy44
#15 Posted : Sunday, November 23, 2003 4:43:42 PM
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Posts: 134,494
All of these suggestions are fantastic! We don''t have a patio or a fire escape, but we have west facing windows so we get the afternoon sun which would be great for tomatoes and other plants that need lots of sun. We might start a mini garden in our apartment. We are probably moving soon since we need a cheaper place to live, but if it is possible to start an indoor garden we are doing it!
My husband is actually in the Navy but we are getting out ASAP (we do NOT support the Iraq war or the Bush administration) both of the careers we are planning afterwards (Marine Science and Chemistry) should allow us to have our own home with a little land to support ourselves. I eventually plan to stay at home with whatever children we may have. Our long term plans are to settle in Virginia, NC, or SC and try to live "off the grid". My husband is a talented electrician in the Navy and has experience farming so hopefully we will be able to pull this off in the next 10 years or so. How to Build Debt Free will be perfect for us. We would be able to slowly build while My husband is in the Navy since we will have base housing during that time. Great idea! Thanks everyone!
earthy44
#16 Posted : Sunday, November 23, 2003 4:43:42 PM
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Posts: 134,494
Hey all,
I am a city dweller for the first time in order to attend graduate school. My husband and I want live in the most ecologically sutainable way possible. We walk everywhere we can, by organic foods, ect., but we are looking for more radical ways to live our values. Our dream is to homestead but it isn't really an option now. Help us city dwellers![^]
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