home projects





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6/11/2009
Instructions for building a cold smoker (and three other things you can do with steel oil drums).
11/1/2010
Jim Oseychuk built this intricate garden shed for his wife and won his category of the Wood-Mizer Personal Best contest.
9/27/2010
Using wood you’ve harvested to start creative wood projects is not impossible. Many sawyers have created beautiful wood structures made from lumber they’ve cut themselves.    
10/13/2010
Donn Saindon built this beautiful 1,200 square foot home from reclaimed wood and won his category of the Wood-Mizer Personal Best contest.
10/25/2010
Joe Bonn built this impressive home in Colorado and won his category of the Wood-Mizer Personal Best contest.
10/18/2010
Robert Craig built this 960 square foot barn in Oregon and won his category of the Wood-Mizer Personal Best contest.
7/6/2010
If you want to learn how to paint your house without the help of professionals, this article from the archives is for you. Exterior home painting can be a snap with the right tools and information.
3/16/2012
The Homestead Act of 1862 celebrates its 150th anniversary this year. The Homestead National Monument is hosting several activities to recognize this historical event that resulted in millions of self-sufficient homesteaders receiving free land. Learn more and participate!
5/27/2011
Radical homemaker Karen Keb introduces her new blog, which will cover topics as diverse as baking bread to raising livestock.
8/12/2010
Building a pantry is a great way to store your groceries and home produce.
4/5/2010
 You can build a low-cost, squirrel-proof bird feeder using simple tools and inexpensive materials. All you need is some plastic drain pipe and caps, hardware cloth and a bit of wire (or a wire hanger). In no time at all, you’ll have all sorts of birds at the feeder — and the squirrels will be perplexed!
4/26/2010
Instructables is a great website for finding DIY projects, and recently site administrators have reorganized the site to make it easier to find the project you're looking for.
3/14/2011
Do you find yourself spelling out words to others, such as when you are spelling out your last name? Try out our Homesteading Alphabet to keep your listeners on their toes and your homesteader lifestyle a part of your daily routine in a whole new way.
3/1/2011
Giving handmade gifts will save money while showing the recipient that you care. Homemade sugar scrub, rice pillows, glass magnets and iPod covers are all easy to make and exciting to receive. Spend time, not money, to give the perfect holiday or birthday gift.
2/13/2013
For one week, BuildingGreen is offering a free download of an insulation guide, available with a 30-day trial of BuildingGreen Suite.
6/13/2010
Environmental journalist Simran Sethi spends her first night in her new home and reflects on the struggles and triumphs of the journey thus far.
1/19/2009
Four months or so after you made wine from summer’s fruit, it’s ready to go into bottles. More meticulous than romantic, the bottling process marks the start of the final wait until the wine is ready to drink.
8/13/2008
Be aware: Living sustainably can be hindered by homeowner association rules.
4/9/2011
Are you a modern homesteader with pioneering women in your lineage? My great grandmothers were all pioneers, but our lives could not be more different.
2/4/2011
One of the best ways to learn about green homes is to explore real-world examples--by touring homes or reading about them online. This article links to free online collections of case studies and in-depth profiles of green homes.
11/24/2014
For the fourth-annual MOTHER EARTH NEWS Homesteaders of the Year contest, we are asking for nominations of homestead hamlets — communities and neighbors working together to enable and practice sustainable living.
10/17/2012
An introduction to me, a home-schooled 11 year old.
6/24/2013
There are some things that you just aren’t going to wash very often, like your curtains, couch cushions, and probably even your favorite jeans. To spare the air, concoct a simple essential oil-infused linen spray, and spritz away until your definition of what “clean” smells like shifts permanently.
11/25/2014
It's time for our fourth-annual call for nominations for outstanding modern homesteaders! Organic gardeners, do-it-yourselfers and general self-sufficient gurus are being sought for the opportunity to be named as one of our 2015 Homesteaders of the Year.
11/15/2011
Do you know any modern homesteaders living a self-sufficient lifestyle? We want to know about them! Nominate a family, someone you know or even yourself to become one of our Homesteaders of the Year in 2012.  
7/12/2013
Farmer and HOMEGROWN Life blogger Bryce Oates doesn't need a calling. He’s got plenty of other stuff to keep him busy in his small Missouri town.
3/22/2013
Exploring preparing meals of only homegrown food.
10/31/2012
Why do we believe that math must be done one workbook page at a time, at the kitchen table? Anyone who’s ever kept chickens can tell you all the math that can be found in the hen house.
2/18/2014
This blog post shares some of The Thyme Garden’s experience with growing hops for over 25 years. It includes history of hops, useful information about hops and how and where to grow them.
2/8/2011
Scott Davis’ “Solar Projects, Big and Small” video offers inspiration for both solar energy enthusiasts and folks who are just curious. Tips and advice pertaining to solar energy can be found at the Yahoo! group Simply Solar, and you can make your dream project a reality with Gary Reysa’s instructions.  
1/2/2013
Making cheese was nothing like I expected, but in the end, I was successful.
6/6/2013
As the youngest member of a new local food producers and artisans cooperative, 11-year-old Grace is learning business skills while perfecting her artistic talents with homemade jewelry, pot holders and more.
4/30/2014
Anyone can brew beer. Part 2 of Homebrewing for Beginners seeks to demystify the process of cooking the wort, fermentation, racking, and bottling.
4/14/2014
Anyone can brew beer. The article seeks to demystify the process and help jump start brewing by breaking down the equipment, recipe, and ingredients. This is a 2-part blog post.
9/25/2010
Assistant Editor Heidi Hunt checks in with a quick report about Nate Poell's presentation on homebrewing.
2/27/2013
Pick something new to learn this year from Granny Miller’s list of 101 basic homesteading skills.
9/2/2011
The discussion of home birth often revolves around the mother and the newborn baby. This blog post describes the experience through the eyes of the father, and the amazing respect for the family's midwife that came from the day of his son’s birth.
2/26/2013
One of my earliest vivid childhood memories is sitting on my father’s lap as a young girl reading the magazine together in the 1980s and all throughout my childhood. He would read aloud while I studied the pictures of passive solar building, vegetable gardening, sheep shearing, building your own sugar shack and the beautiful array of topics which he read to me frequently. Those images, along with the camping trips in the mountains, the whitewater and canoeing excursions, and our family trip to Alaska, have been etched in the catacombs of my childhood memories and have sculpted the person I have grown to become.
1/4/2013
MOTHER EARTH NEWS is seeking nominations of self-sufficient modern homesteaders for our 2013 Homesteaders of the Year awards.
3/15/2011
We learned a long time ago that we couldn’t attract an audience for our magazines unless we gave our readers tools they could use to improve the world personally. A backyard organic garden is the perfect symbol of positive vision and commitment.
6/16/2014
When HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Pennsylvania mama Michelle Wire discovered a hidden treasure on her property, she found a new appreciation for her home along with it.
4/15/2014
HOMEGROWN blogger Dyan finally spots signs of spring on her Maine dairy farm, from sunrises to newborn goat kids to eggs of every shade. Lovely!
11/17/2014
When her parents fall ill, Michelle takes a step back to care for them, to take stock of all she has learned from them, and to observe an early Thanksgiving.
6/21/2011
  At the Healthy Homes Conference in Denver today, I heard Home Depot Foundation CEO Fred Wacker say that the nonprofit sector is so far ahead of the profit sector in addressing healthy homes that it’s embarrassing for the profit sector. I heard Ellen Tohn of Tohn Environmental Strategies say that the government will fund energy-efficiency updates in 1 million homes in the next year, making it paramount that energy workers understand healthy home principles. Poorly done house tightening could trap residents inside with contaminants and create hazards. And I was pleased to hear health care pioneer Dr. Georges Benjamin, executive director of the American Public Health Association, put quality housing in the same arena as diet, exercise and public policy as a key to achieving individual health. “If you don’t have healthy housing, I don’t care how many times you push away from the table or how far you walk, you’re not going to be healthy,” he said.  
6/10/2009
The Homestead Act of 1862 opened up 270 million acres of public domain land for settlement. The Homestead National Monument of America tells the stories of many of the people who claimed land and tried to "prove up" their claim.
12/13/2013
HOMEGROWN.org unwraps its 2013 holiday gift guide, featuring lots of homemade presents, as well as a few stocking stuffers for under $20.
8/18/2008
The Department of Homeland Security continues to build a 670-mile-long wall along the US-Mexico border to keep illegal immigrants, but have they thought about the wildlife that they will destroy along the way?
1/10/2011
Marley Audio Electronics collection, which debuted last week, showcases premium, eco-conscious manufacturing and materials, including hemp.
4/21/2011
Green is Universal and Etsy's The Art of Reuse Contest is a gold mine for DIY home project ideas. My favorite pays homage to Audrey Hepburn's ahead-of-its-time sofa made from an old clawfoot bathtub in Breakfast at Tiffany's.
10/14/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Pennsylvania homesteading mama Michelle takes a young woman under her wing for a first lesson in homemaking.
6/22/2011
We are collecting stories from our readers -- their older neighbors or relatives, too -- about self-sufficient homesteading and farming in the early 20th century. Read what we've found, and share your own story from yesteryear for modern homesteaders.
5/25/2010
The time for relaxing in the sun has arrived, and this homemade hammock tutorial will help you hang out in style.
3/17/2014
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Maine dairy farmer Dyan Redick recounts a poignant start to lambing season on Bittersweet Heritage Farm.
3/21/2014
Western Missouri farmer Bryce Oates shares his thoughts on the USDA's once-in-five-years census.
4/7/2014
Pennsylvania mama Michelle has finally found a homestead! Get her moving tips on take-back programs, packing mason jars, buying cheap appliances, and more.
7/14/2011
Victoria Gazely considers her revitalized 650-square-foot homesteader’s cabin on 7 acres of fertile earth--purchased for $150--a blessing. “I absolutely love living here,” she says.
2/5/2014
Glimpse a view into the world of cordwood construction. This old-fashioned, natural building technique can inspire you to build an energy-efficient, mortgage-free house of your own.
11/18/2011
At last, we construct the foundation.
7/31/2011
Jeff and wife Kathy have lived off-grid since 2002. They strive to inform the public about ways to live inexpensively, and to further the principle of sustainability. Visit their website to learn more: www.naturalpower.weebly.com
6/6/2012
Our humble abode begins to take shape.
9/17/2014
Doug and Jennie Ostgaard designed and built a photovoltaic system for their home, a project they was completed in six months. DIY photovoltaic solar has many benefits, and they outline a few of them here.
10/22/2012
How to make your own homemade deodorant that really works!
11/25/2008
Build this portable poultry pen in an afternoon using only simple hand tools. It’s just the right size for a small yard, but you’ll find lots of uses for it around the homestead, too.
5/12/2014
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel shares how she built a cheap greenhouse out of mostly scavenged materials - and how you can, too.
1/11/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger Bryce shares 5 things to consider before starting a farmstead—not the least of which being winter.
3/11/2008
Get our expert advice on homemade options for laundry soap.
7/10/2012
Learn about using the Piteba to press your own homegrown oil.
12/12/2010
Building housing projects in developing regions is extremely rewarding, but also quite challenging. It’s prudent to draw ideas from as many resources as possible to improve the process. The following guidelines have proven effective.
7/7/2008
The Department of Homeland Security continues to build a 670-mile-long wall to create a barrier along the US-Mexico border. Although the wall will never completely stop illegal immigrants from coming into the country, it will risk the survival of animals and wildlife in the area.
7/23/2008
The Department of Homeland Security continues to build a 670-mile-long wall along the US-Mexico border, despite petitions from the Defenders of Wildlife and the Sierra Club.
2/1/2013
While many of those visiting our Hostel are farmers and homesteaders themselves, some come from that “city culture” and seem to take their first hesitant steps outside of a flatly paved driveway when they arrive at our place. Wide eyes, a sense of adventure.
2/1/2013
Since her first house move, MOTHER EARTH NEWS blogger Cathie Ackroyd, has become so very conscious of the impact we humans have had and are having on our planet’s environment and hoped to find a place to settle that would allow us to gain an element of self-sufficiency in a relatively car-free community.
7/15/2014
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and West Missourian Bryce Oates explains how he and his family survive summer on the farm. Two words: swimming pool.
5/1/2012
We call our homestead Sunflower Farm and now we have the sign to show for it!
5/16/2012
Mother's Day was this past Sunday, so I felt it was appropriate to share two beautiful birth stories this week that were sent to me from two extraordinary and strong women. This first story, in two parts, is a story about a HBAMC.
4/19/2012
My name is Antonette, and I am a new blogger here at MOTHER EARTH NEWS. Before I can blog my pregnancy journey for you all, I must first do something that has taken six years ... write the birth story of my son Baylin.
5/21/2012
The birth story of Baby Oakley from my dear friend Suzann is an important one. Someimes things don't go as planned, but her story goes to show that an empowering birth is about trust, love, support and the power of choice.
5/17/2012
On Mother's Day 2011, Brandy went in to labor with her fourth child. She was planning a HBAMC (Home Birth After Multiple C-Sections). She woke up that morning ready to bring her son into this world on her terms. This is Part 2 of her story.
4/23/2012
October 6, 2010, at 11:04 am I said the three words I waited over four and a half years to say. I looked in to my newborn daughter’s eyes and said I DID IT! This is the VBAC homebirth story of my daughter Evangélina.
5/25/2012
After many weeks of prodromal labor and a baby who kept momma on the edge by constantly changing position, Suzanne goes into labor with Baby O in a posterior position. Read Part 2 of Oakley's Birth Story.
5/2/2012
I recently received a copy of the new book and pregnancy journal Sacred Pregnancy from author Anni Daulter. I was thrilled when Anni agreed to guest post this week for the blog on what makes a Sacred Pregnancy.
7/6/2010
Have you ever let your imagination run wild and built a fanciful, unique … (spinning wheel, bat house, garden tool)
9/3/2009
Kids love to build forts and space ships, and create secret places to dream and imagine.
8/24/2009
Engaging in new projects around the house or yard can put us in unfamiliar territory where we might make mistakes that are potentially dangerous or just embarrassing.
8/5/2010
Keeping your tools in good working order saves time and money.
8/27/2010
Learn how to make giant bubbles like a professional bubble artist at home with this DIY video. Complete with a recipe to make a giant bubble wand and your own homemade soap solution, you’ll be ready to impress everyone on your street with human-sized bubbles.  
3/1/2013
The traditional potato stamp gets a makeover in this tutorial over how to use a spud to make a work of art (and gratitude).
6/13/2011
Jim and Julie are starting their homestead in Texas while still living in Australia. Managing the project by remote control is the challenge, and they are learning as they go. This is an adventure of faith and confidence.
1/20/2014
Haven't made any New Year's resolutions yet? No worries. HOMEGROWN.org has you covered with 10 ways to change the world in 2014, starting in your own backyard.
4/27/2009
Prefab is so much more than mobile homes! Explore your options for manufactured homes, modular homes and panelized homes made of wood, steel or insulated concrete.
11/23/2013
Homesteading with dogs in remote mountain living. Considerations in providing a good safe homestead environment for your cherished pets.
5/21/2010
These cheap and easy homemade baby wipes will make your baby’s bottom and your pocketbook healthy and happy.
6/21/2013
In 45 years, Deltec Homes have never lost a house to high winds.
2/23/2007
This morning in my inbox: Orlando Bloom announced at Wednesday night’s Global Green pre-Oscars party that he’s building a green, solar-powered home in London. And an RISMedia report stating that despite the downturn in the general housing market, demand for green homes continues to be a hot trend.
2/5/2013
Many years ago, years before I moved to the country, I was what would be considered "a prepper." I saw disaster every time I turned on the TV, or read the news on the internet, or visited forums that talked about stockpiling beans and bullets. I panicked, thinking I could never have enough control for the sake of my family, never be "prepped" enough.
2/18/2013
The place I call home these days is The FarmSchool, a fertile 180-acre strip of ridge top in Athol, where 15 student-farmers are spending a year learning the ins and outs of growing food, managing forests, and raising animals for meat. I arrived at the farm in October, just as the leaves were reaching their peak brilliance. The Farm School — which offers three-day programs for schoolchildren, a summer camp, a full-time middle school, and the apprenticeship program I’m in — takes us through all seasons of farming, weaving together class work and on-farm training.
1/10/2014
Did you buy or build a home without going into debt? We're looking for stories on homes built with a small mortgage, or no mortgage at all. Here's what we want to know.
7/1/2008
Here are some resources where you can learn more about how a scythe can be useful on your homestead.
11/1/2012
The new metal roof was nailed down just hours before the storm hit.
4/26/2011
Our Rural Property for Sale site helps you search for a sweet spot to put your future homestead, with handy filters to help you find just what you're looking for more easily.
7/12/2011
This grandparents’ homestead housed a number of generations and everyone participated in daily chores such as pumping water for baths, melting lard for bread, and using cloth flour bags to make curtains, blankets and dresses.
5/24/2010
Small towns across the country in need of a population boost are literally giving away free land to attract new residents and boost their populations. Seekers of the quiet (and low-cost) small town lifestyle can now grab some free land to build their homes.
8/2/2012
The NH Permaculture Gathering is just a couple weeks away!
6/22/2010
If you have a lot of excess scrap paper like I do, it’s time to put that waste to better use. Read this do-it-yourself article about how to make your own homemade, recycled paper, and then get to work turning trash into treasure.
8/10/2011
From pig to plate, learn how to make homemade sausage patties grandma’s way and use rendered fat for more cooking.
5/23/2011
The $300 House Project challenges student and professional designers to create housing that shelters the poorest of the poor with safety and dignity. Winners will receive cash prizes and the opportunity to see their $300 houses built and reproduced.
2/1/2012
You can easily make homemade mozzarella in 30 minutes or less!
3/31/2011
Have you ever wondered how to make reusable bags to take to the market? They’re easier to fashion than you might think, and you can work with all sorts of materials! See how to melt used-plastic sacks to make a new plastic bag or upcycle a T-shirt into a bag suitable for market. Newspapers make a chic and sophistocated basket perfect for carrying fruits or produce. Upcycling is good for the environment and makes for stylish shopping, too!
3/21/2011
Builders and designers believe that low-e windows, engineered wood products and eat-in kitchens will be key characteristics of new homes in the future.
6/25/2013
HOMEGROWN blogger and homesteading mama Michelle explains why road trips are worth packing 3 kids, 2 adults, and 2 dogs in a camper for weeks on end.
7/2/2013
In the wake of the summer solstice, HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Maine dairy farmer Dyan takes time to appreciate the longest days of the year.
7/22/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel recounts how she went from half-hearted to full-breed-ahead when it comes to breeding goats.
8/5/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Maine dairy farmer Dyan Redick honors the determination of women farmers, even as she observes a bittersweet month on her farm.
8/26/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and West Missouri farmer Bryce Oates discusses why his family works so hard—both on and off of the farm—to practice subsistence farming.
11/12/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel discusses using manure in the garden, including which type of animal waste is best for which crops.
9/4/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel of Dog Island Farm covers the essentials of how to can safely.
10/8/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Maine dairy farmer Dyan reflects on the changes that arrive with fall, including her own sense of melancholy.
11/21/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Missouri farmer Bryce Oates shares why he values reading (Eliot Coleman, especially) and how it impacts his fall growing season.
12/2/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and homesteader Rachel, of the Bay Area's Dog Island Farm, shares her method for cooking the very best Thanksgiving turkey ever.
10/1/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and West Missouri farmer Bryce Oates shares his approach to improving soil health and preparing a soil microbe brew.
2/7/2014
HOMEGROWN.org blogger and West Missouri farmer Bryce Oates shares his thoughtful position on vegetarianism.
7/22/2014
HOMEGROWN Life blogger Michelle Wire explains how homestead parenting works in her house, where sons and daughters learn the same skills.
3/11/2013
Facing massive snow drifts, HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Maine dairy farmer Dyan Redick forges a new path to her barn and finds inspiration in the process.
4/19/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger Dyan Redick considers how inextricably the lives of farmers and fishermen are intertwined in her coastal Maine town.
5/7/2012
In the final chapter of this five-part series, Lyn Fenwick finds the country cemetery that Isaac was burried in and pays her respects to the author of a treasured family heirloom, a 19th century homesteaders journal.
2/25/2014
HOMEGROWN blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel outlines strategies for responsible drought gardening in her home state of California--or anywhere.
7/9/2008
Cobbler is not the only solution to a bumper crop of berries. If you can boil water, you can turn the juice from big-flavor berries into tasty beverages that are naturally rich in vitamins and antioxidants. Make extra juice to freeze or can for year-round enjoyment.
7/24/2012
There's no need to be afraid of canning. With basic skills a cook can safely prepare and process excess produce during the summer and have a ready supply all winter. An easy way to start is with dill pickles, with extras like garlic and hot peppers.
5/30/2012
This blog post describes the MOTHER EARTH NEWS staff's afternoon spent harvesting their homegrown garlic.
4/25/2012
An introduction to my current pregnancy with Baby #3 and plans for a second homebirth. Details of my seventh month and thoughts on the gender of our baby.
6/21/2012
A Birth Altar is a space that will become a power symbol of one's birth. I have begun creating my birth space and bringing together objects that will become my collection of strength during my home birth.
6/10/2011
  Existing homes that are certified as “green” sold for 30 percent more than homes without such a designation, according to an analysis of the Portland, Oregon, metropolitan region released today by Earth Advantage Institute, a nonprofit green building resource. Newly constructed homes with a sustainability certification sold for 8 percent more than non-certified homes. This result continues a four-year trend in which new homes with third-party certification for sustainable construction and energy performance have consistently sold for more than newly constructed homes that had not been certified. The term "certified home" includes homes that received an Earth Advantage New Homes, ENERGY STAR, or a LEED for Homes designation, or a combined Earth Advantage/ENERGY STAR certification.  
2/10/2011
This is a summary of our attendance at the IBS show in Jan. Also a re-cap of Jan events and our transistion into the construction phase of the project. We also talk about the decision for the competiton to be moved off the Nationa Mall in DC
7/27/2011
Forced to extremes by illness, these homeowners built sacred, beautiful homes completely free of toxic chemicals, petrochemical fumes and other poisons. For all three, better housing has meant better health.
12/22/2012
Where we find a wealth of information for projects and enjoyable reading.
1/22/2014
Learn the basic skills useful for mountain homesteading.
5/27/2011
James Zitting of Bee Landing and Terry Phelan of Living Shelter Design Architects will present workshops on beekeeping and straw bale building at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
5/27/2011
Kathy Bennett and Scott Bergford will present workshops on raising sheep and keeping your green home safe at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
7/31/2012
A listing of companies that offer green dwellings in the form of modular, prefab, manufactured, compact, or mobile structures. These days, many such options are available that are not only green, but also beautiful, well-made, and often low-cost.
11/22/2013
Learn to make Queso Blanco, by far the easiest cheese in my opinion, as the only ingredients are whole milk and white vinegar (or apple cider vinegar if you like).
1/1/0001
This soft, tangy sourdough oatmeal bread may just be the best you’ve ever tasted.
2/5/2014
Make a delicious homemade bread with this easy tutorial.
3/1/2013
Use your extra screwdriver bits to build stubby screwdrivers suitable for small spaces.
7/13/2010
Homemade vodka is easy to make and tastes great. Stay tuned —  MOTHER EARTH NEWS has an article coming up next year about Artisan Alcohol Distilling.
5/1/2009
Make you own inexpensive, pampering - and edible - homemade face mask with this simple recipe. Enjoy!
8/16/2011
This traditional recipe for Potatiskorv, or Swedish potato sausage, is delicious, simple and hearty. 
7/15/2013
There are many ways we can conserve energy, and be more eco-friendly, especially with the advancements that technology is making every day.
3/25/2011
One of the nation's largest home developers announces it will offer solar arrays as standard features on new homes in California.
4/6/2012
A lookout tower home, which features reclaimed materials, connects its homeowner with her past, present and future.
7/5/2013
This low-cost, easy-to-assemble fire pit from Instructables is made with concrete tree rings and rocks. Just add a grill and you've got the perfect backyard hangout, all for around $50.
8/15/2013
Crafting laundry detergent saves time, money and lightens your environmental footprint. Plus it’s simple!
12/24/2013
Who knew that making a soda so delicious was so darn easy?! This office experiment is our most rewarding yet. I mean, Marlin is cool with his aquaponic system and all, but I definitely don’t want to drink fish water. (See aquaponic blog.) Our ginger beer is so refreshing, surprisingly effervescent and just plain awesome! So you’d like to know how to make it yourself, right? Well, I will gladly share the steps and recipe with you.
1/8/2014
Reuse various household materials to make a functional cheese press.
7/14/2010
Build a simple backyard barbecue pit with no more than a shovel and a good cover panel for your next barbecue party.
12/8/2010
Use old CDs and soda cans to keep pests out of your garden.
7/21/2010
Why spend hundreds of dollars on a commercial recumbent bicycle when you can make your own out of parts of recycled bikes?
6/10/2010
Finding the perfect desk with just the right amount of work space can be a hassle and a financial drain. Build your own desk with this do-it-yourself tutorial, and you’ll have room for your computer, notebooks, phone, printer and any other work-time necessities, and you’ll save some serious cash in the process.
9/11/2009
How-to online videos are a valuable resource for any do-it-yourselfer. But there are a lot of videos out there, so we’ve picked noteworthy ones and provided a few links to help you find more in the future. From building a workbench to changing your car’s oil, these engaging and instructive videos will inspire you to start a fun, new DIY project.
6/9/2012
Ben Cartwright of Lawrence, Kan., is working on a book project about the city of Tianjin, China, where he worked and lived for several months, and he needs your help.
2/25/2013
Borrowing from a Native American tradition, utilize porcupine quills to make beautiful beads.
3/16/2010
Recycling building materials from other sources is a great way to cut the cost and reduce the environmental impact of your DIY projects. We want to know where readers go to find reclaimed or used building materials, and how they use these materials in home projects.
3/9/2011
Any net zero-energy home needs two things. The first is the sun, providing passive solar energy. The second necessity is retaining maximum heat.  
10/20/2010
Living luxuriously doesn’t necessarily mean living large — at least not in these homes — and reducing a little waste doesn’t hurt, either.
2/4/2011
Most of us would love to live in energy-efficient homes that are good for the environment and have low, low energy bills. But what are the best real options available? How do you create an extremely energy-efficient home that’s still affordable for most people?
10/1/2012
To build a net zero energy home, you'll need to design for passive gain. That requires a shallower footprint to ensure that the low-angled winter sun can enter and heat each room.
10/28/2012
Insulation under the slab -- and lots of it -- is vital for the performance of a net zero energy home. So is the footprint. You can make the most of passive solar by creating a longer, narrower house in which each room is heated by the sun.
10/28/2012
Be sure to install under-the-footing conduit to run electrical and water pipes, including sewer. I like to run pipes and wire under the foot to prevent penetrating the band joist or the foundation to create a more airtight, water tight home.
11/3/2012
Don't forget to budget in the cost of deeper excavation and add $1000 to $2000 as a budget contingecy in case you run into bedrock.
11/11/2012
Insulating concrete forms are an excellent choice for foundations for passive solar, net zero energy homes. They create a highly insulated, air-tight foundation, so essential for extremely high energy performance.
11/11/2012
ICFs are not the most environmentally friendly green building product, but result in super energy efficient home, and offer many other benefits, that offset their origin from petrochemicals.
11/19/2012
ICF walls must be carefully braced to prevent blowout.
10/1/2012
Creating a net zero energy home requires that we eliminate all thermal bridging loss -- heat movement into and out of a building. All this starts in the basement.
6/3/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel of Dog Island Farm shares how to install drip irrigation in your home garden.
6/18/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Maine dairy farmer Dyan learns that giving up control, whether over a mischievous flock or a single lamb, can have its own rewards.
8/15/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger Michelle's annual road trips out west renew her love for the heartland and the American farmer.
12/24/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Pennsylvania homesteading mama Michelle reflects on how she lost the Christmas spirit of her youth — and how she got it back.
3/6/2014
Looking for land? HOMEGROWN.org blogger Michelle Wire shares resources and practical advice for anyone considering buying a homestead.
7/2/2014
HOMEGROWN.org blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel of Dog Island Farm says keeping animals in the garden improves her soil and fights weeds and pests.
1/9/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger Rachel, of Dog Island Farm, argues in favor of her favorite chicken breed, the Buckeye.
11/1/2011
A few hundred protestors from across the country arrived at the White House last month, the culmination of the two-week GMO Right2Know March that began in New York City on October 1. (Congratulations all you brave marchers - my feet ache just thinkin
1/3/2013
Coming back to agriculture and the farming life, I think every farmer should spend time as a fisherperson. If that were the case, I have a hard time believing Industrial Agriculture would have ever taken its foothold. Manure runs downhill as they say
8/1/2014
Going camping, hiking, or canoeing this summer? HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel shares a big-batch granola recipe that will feed your entire group—or one hungry teen.
2/29/2012
Homestead skills of yogurt-making and bread-baking increase your independence from grocery store aisles and international food conglomerates.
7/5/2011
As the economy improves, the trend toward smaller homes is reversing.
1/10/2011
As Passive House Institute standards up the ante, USA Today’s “Best Green Homes of 2010” list reflects Americans’ desire for affordability, efficiency and style.
2/5/2013
Tail Docking of dairy cows serves no purpose and causes pain and discomfort for the cows.
9/5/2012
Clipping the wing of a troublesome hen and tasting the first Chicago hardy figs was really great, but what was even more fantastic was seeing Anna's new book arrive and how beautiful it looks.
7/25/2011
Katie and Martin Clemons are resetting their priorities as they settle happily into a 480-square-foot apartment in Berlin. “Living smaller has taught us to live more simply,” Katie says. They bike more, shower less and enjoy their good life.
4/4/2013
Looking for a great home metalworking project? Follow these DIY patio furniture instructions to build scrap-metal furniture for your patio.   
9/28/2012
Curing your own bacon is so simple that anyone can do it. Here's how to do so, complete with recipe and step-by-step.
4/24/2013
Our striving to live frugally, monetary so, affects our everyday life choices. We choose to live without a lot of things that cost money. We make most of the cash we do need by running the Hostel in the summer months.
7/29/2013
FamilyFarmed.org Good Food Festival & Conference partner Vicki Nowicki shares her experience living, learning, and teaching on her suburban permaculture homestead.
8/6/2013
There are a lot of things you can do right now to experience the homestead lifestyle right in your backyard.
10/3/2013
Watch Steve tell you his homestead story and how his two trucks have helped make good things happen.
12/12/2013
Chainsaw safety equipment.
12/9/2013
Stay warm, find a hobby and cull the livestock; here are some of the things we do to prepare for winter!
11/27/2013
Using rabbit hypnosis and a pair of wire cutters we successfully perform dental surgery on one of our does.
1/2/2014
Providing your own sewer, water and power can be more expensive and is certainly less convenient but that's not all there is to consider. This article takes a look at some of the other differences between public and private services.
12/22/2011
A rundown of activities you can do in the winter to improve your homestead.
12/16/2012
Outlining our process for locating a suitable location for finding a new homestead.
12/1/2010
Homesteads and farms often have fun or touching names that etch themselves into our memories. Is there one that has stuck in yours?
1/14/2013
After many months of preparation and planning, we are very excited to be starting to build our homestead - a barndominium. The first stage is to get a good solid foundation so our new homestead will be solid for today and future generations.
1/19/2012
How we approached buying our property, clearing and selecting a home site.
12/14/2012
As we look into the future we prepare for a flatter terrain for a new homestead.
9/18/2011
Fun is where you find it, in this case it is a hay ride for the family along our trail.
1/15/2013
On what will probably be the last trip to Chateau Christie as Australians, we are trying to get the property to a livable stage - completing the electrical and plumbing and getting things ready for an inspection so we can sheetrock and finish.
1/14/2013
The building of the barndominium is in high gear. After all of the ground work, the slab is poured, cured and the steel framework of the barndominium is erected in one day. With the progress, there were a few problems but quickly solved.
10/24/2014
Expense checklist for anyone wanting to plan a new homestead.
4/25/2013
To me, the most important features of a sustainable building are not its technological wonders but its simple design features: common-sense strategies that should be incorporated whether the building becomes LEED certified, Energy Star certified, or is just trying to be environmentally friendly.
12/13/2013
Jonathan Sadowski shares what motivates him to be a bread baker. He then provides a preview of what to expect from his future posts.
7/15/2014
You can create refreshing-flavored waters and sodas right from your backyard. Homemade waters and sodas are easy, cost effective and healthy.
12/23/2013
Ten easy holiday pantry gifts that you can make at the last minute.
2/28/2014
This recipe will have naan on your table in no time to accompany your Indian dishes, and it will provide a quick and easy snack in a pinch.
1/22/2014
This recipe provides delicious bread with minimal time commitment and plenty of room to explore the wonders of homemade bread.
2/3/2014
This heavy artisan bread is full of flavor, and will be ready by dinnertime if you start right now! The unexpected flavor comes from good quality honey olive oil and barley flour.
2/24/2011
Take control of your food with a return to the kitchen, and learn to love the time you spend there cooking with your family.
9/30/2011
You can save money and improve your helaht by making more foods from scratch in your own kitchen. Sign on for October Unprocessed, and kick the processed food habit for one full month (at least for starters!). Check out some deliciously simple recipes to get you started.
9/26/2010
Jessica Kellner, managing editor with Natural Home magazine, talks with Deborah Niemann-Boehle about how easy it is to make bread at home.
1/15/2013
I used my homemade ricotta cheese in a number of ways, the best was in a pumpkin lasagna dish we shared with my family at Christmas dinner.
11/2/2012
Learn how to make a pinwheel for a fun, outdoors toy.
7/30/2010
Ten easy-to-make homemade soup recipes from Eating Well magazine that are suitable for any occasion.
8/6/2014
Drop store bought mayonnaise like a bad habit. Make your own with only five simple ingredients, under 5 minutes.
9/30/2014
Check out this delicious, refreshing treat that comes in handy when there are too many blueberries to know what to do with.
8/5/2012
In this blog, I describe two of the first and most important design considerations -- the length and depth of the home and the layout of rooms for optimum passive solar gain.
2/4/2010
Dan Chiras talks about the benefits of passive solar design.
1/25/2010
Dan Chiras discusses the long-term benefits of building a green home.
12/7/2009
Learn more about the life and work of Malcolm Wells, the "Father of Earth Sheltered Design."
12/19/2013
A progress update on our book Tiny Homes On the Move
10/22/2013
If you are hoping to build a new home or weekend cottage, we would appreciate your participation in this short survey, which will gauge your interest in a variety of possible kit home features.
11/2/2009
More than 30 years ago, Michael Reynolds followed his vision of sustainable, energy-efficient homes that would work with nature. Today, his Earthships inspire green designers and architects.
7/13/2011
Lloyd meditates on the essentials of shelter and our memories of home.
1/11/2010
A new Environmental Protection Agency website helps homeowners and renters decrease their energy consumption and cut carbon emissions.
8/19/2010
Information about energy-efficient washing machines and cellular window shades. These energy-efficient appliances and window shades will please environmentally conscious consumers. 
7/14/2011
Offering paint that saves the rain forest and a full list of ingredients, this natural finishes start-up aims to change the industry. Unearthed is making a bold move by providing full ingredient disclosure for all of its products.
5/21/2009
Using natural products, such as grass clippings and homemade organic fertilizer, can turn the worst clay soil into an acceptable growing medium.
4/23/2009
Creating new no-dig garden beds is easier and quicker with raised-bed stakes and two-by-six lumber.
5/7/2009
This historical neighborhood, with a strong sense of community, offers the feeling of small-town living.
12/18/2009
For inspiration and education, take some time to peruse the hundreds of Modern Homesteading articles.
4/29/2010
Bounty is in the eye of the beholder — whether it be a bowl of perfect berries or millions of maple seeds.
4/14/2009
Moving to an urban homestead is a challenge, but the boxes are getting unpacked and the birds are at the feeders.
7/14/2009
Farming isn’t a skill that can be easily learned from a book. Here’s some advice and a collection of resources to help you decide whether you’re ready to try your hand at it.
9/13/2011
One woman's journey from life in urban America to a small town in Austria, then back to a suburban homestead in Dallas on which she tries her hand at keeping dairy goats.
7/31/2009
All of the work of readying the garden and waiting for it to produce is worth the wait once the harvest begins.
3/11/2010
Keeping a garden journal helps you know which varieties you grew were successful, which were not and how much you harvested from each.
6/22/2009
The garden is growing better than I could have expected in the raised beds at my "new" urban homestead.
4/1/2009
Making the move to a historical neighborhood will offer an opportunity to develop community ties and try some new gardening techniques.
8/3/2010
All the hard work of planting, weeding and watering comes to fruition in a bowl of berries and a plate of golden potatoes.
4/22/2009
Here are a few helpful books on homesteading skills and old-time crafts.
5/11/2011
Building homes using dangerous and impactful industrial chemicals--in the name of energy efficiency--is not sustainable or ecological, a green building veteran says. His Health-Based Building model is an important step forward for green design.
5/28/2011
In this blog we talk about our three differnet types of solar technology that we have on the Homestead.
3/11/2011
Brief description of our journey back onto the National Mall, our Flex Space design, and our Solar Thermal Skylight.
6/24/2013
Learn how to assemble a humane animal trap out of recycled material. It’s easy and effective!
5/13/2013
Gather a few pallets and get geared up to make your very own spacious rabbit hutch with just a few supplies for under $25 dollars!
12/30/2013
Wintertime for a farmer is full of projects and planning.
6/21/2010
Need to get your kids out of the house? Learn how to build your own playground and give them a convenient place for outdoor playtime.
4/12/2011
The Goldman Environmental Prize is the world’s largest and most prestigious award for grassroots environmentalists. This year’s six inspiring prize winners (one from each of the six inhabited continental regions of the world) are...
7/10/2008
Learn about the many kitchen and community projects supported by SARE (Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education), including the training necessary to be able to sell value-added food products at markets.
3/13/2013
A report from economic analyst Mark Cooper shows that continuing nuclear power projects in the Southeast will only produce billions of dollars in excess costs.  
6/15/2012
Kids get to have fun, learn about gardneing and start veggie seeds at the MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR in Puyallup, Wash.
8/16/2012
Portland is the nation's most bike-friendly city, yet this Oregon community has had to deal with cycling disparities among its population. One nonprofit organization addressed this issue by developing new programs targeting low-income immigrant communities.
4/14/2011
You can upcycle (make crafts from recycled materials) to beautifuly and simplify your world! Have a few old T-shirts that are past their prime? Make them into a rosette pillow! Use homemade recycled paper to send friends and family chic, personalized greetings cards. Overrun with stuff to recycle? Transform tin can lids into a melodious windchime! Have fun and get creative turning your old stuff into treasures!
3/12/2013
Simple and old-fashioned, homemade fried pies are a good Sunday afternoon dessert that even the kids can help with.  
11/28/2010
Here's some hints on how to juggle cheese-making among the many other homesteading chores. Mozzarella and cheddar can both be woven in while doing other tasks, but there's nothing like clabbered cheese for ease of making.
6/16/2011
Our process of buying the land for our homestead had little to do with logic and a lot to do with emotion. For me, it was a chance to return to the plains where I grew up and be close to family.
11/19/2012
Scaffolding is required to access the walls to pour the concrete. Scaffolding also helps support the walls.
11/19/2012
Additional reinforcement is required around the garage door opening.
5/14/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger Dyan Redick divides her time differently these days, Before Milking and After Milking, in the wake of spring births on her Maine dairy farm.
5/22/2013
Missouri farmer and HOMEGROWN Life blogger Bryce Oates tackles the Enbridge Flanagan South Pipeline, which would cross 1 mile from his area's water intake.
7/13/2012
None of these items' primary use is for gardening or livestock keeping but here we are using them all the time. So here's my list of items that you should keep around if you are an avid gardener or own livestock.
9/10/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Pennsylvania homesteading mama Michelle shares a few strategies and suggestions for healthier school lunches.
1/13/2014
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Maine dairy farmer Dyan Redick gets through winter — and goat breeding — by taking a page from her herd and sticking together.
1/28/2014
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel shares her New Year's resolution for 2014: buying food directly from farmers.
4/30/2014
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Missouri farmer Bryce Oates traces the history of county fairs from their origins in the country life movement to his own kids' involvement.
1/9/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger Dyan recalls how the seasons affected her childhood and how they guide her activities now on her Maine dairy farm.
3/13/2013
HOMEGROWN.org introduces Find Good Food, a new page that includes national and state-by-state resources for locating family farmed eats near you. Read it! Share it! Add to it! Make it your own—and help make it even better.
10/11/2012
If there’s one thing I’ve learned in my short time of being a goat herder, it’s that at breeding time, the goats are in charge.
2/12/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger Bryce Oates sings the praises of mixed-species perennial pastures for in-between seasons—even if they don't fully alleviate the need for watching and waiting.
7/22/2011
Let’s break down the soap-making process and start scrubbin’ with homemade bars!
12/15/2011
After a completely miserable potato harvest this year we’ve decided to pull them out of the ground and do them in boxes made out of pallets. That way we can use weedblock under them to eliminate the whole bindweed issue. So today, the boxes went up.
6/11/2012
So, yes, I have become a lover of goats (and ducks have won me over, too). But the truth is, I can’t wait to eat the boys.
1/11/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger Rachel shares the basics of landscape design.
10/30/2012
Dyan writes about the changing season at Bittersweet Farm, and introduces us to the newest member of the flock, a black sheep named Little Man.
5/14/2012
The flowers weren't just there to be pretty. They provided a long blooming source of forage for our bees and the native pollinators.
8/10/2011
Rachel describes how to turn her heirloom corn crop into beautiful blue corn tortillas!
3/16/2012
A recipe for sourdough starter.
1/13/2012
How to Schedule your Planting by the Moon
2/24/2012
The morning started off with a decent lecture on poultry operation, production, and marketing. After a midday break, lectures resumed, this time being led by a different fellow, on the subject of free-range, humane certified broiler production. I won
1/24/2013
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Maine dairy farmer Dyan Redick discovers a kindred soul in E. B. White when she reads the essay Memorandum, from his 1944 collection, 'One Man's Meat.'
4/24/2013
Want to Save on Earth-Friendly Products? Check out Worm's Way's sale by clicking on the Earth Week banner at WormsWay.com and enjoy up to 20 percent off your purchases.
4/24/2013
An introduction to Paula Baker-Laporte's future readers : about Paula, multiple chemical sensitivities, Building Biology and the role of green building in health.
4/24/2013
Many people don’t know that most HVAC systems don’t produce more or less heating or cooling based on the room temperature – they simply blow air for longer.
3/8/2010
This two-day, alternative building workshop featuring energy expert Dan Chiras will be held March 13-14, 2010 in St. Louis.
2/14/2011
Americans continue to believe that green homes make a difference--but they need to be more affordable.
3/28/2012
This index links to some recent and popular posts related to green building, design, remodeling, and home improvement. The posts cover a broad range of topics, from green products to projects to practices, as well as sustainable communities.
4/19/2011
Here's a chance to transform your home into the greenest one on the block and then pay it forward to your neighbors to help paint your whole town "green."
11/24/2014
This variation on the (endlessly adaptable) traditional Mongolian yurt design was inspired by the work of master yurt builder, educator, and homesteader Bill Coperthwaite (who was also a neighbor and friend of the Nearings). This low-cost yurt design combines basketry, wattle and daub, and basic lashing (similar to skin-on-frame boats). Not much more than a glorified tent, this DIY yurt made from sticks, string and mud makes a very comfortable, durable and beautiful tiny house, studio, or meditation space.
11/18/2014
Join two modern homesteaders as they begin down the road toward building their small home and self-reliant farmstead on their new piece of raw land in northeastern Kansas.
2/20/2013
May is the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s National Preservation Month. In conjunction with this month dedicated to protecting historic places, Sansin Corporation — a wood protection company focused on eco-friendly, “water-borne” interior and exterior stains — offers tips that do-it-yourselfers should keep in mind when undertaking historic home renovations.
5/27/2011
Since they built their solar- and wind-powered cordwood home in Desboro, Ontario, Lisa and Ray Racicot have never looked back. The only thing they'll do differently next time is install the renewable energy systems first, to power the construction.
7/8/2011
To satisfy today's home buyer, a developer of million-dollar luxury homes in New York is offering smaller, more affordable houses--more anecdotal evidence that the McMansion is dying.
6/24/2011
This home in the Florida Keys captures prevailing breezes and takes advantage of passive cooling techniques such as open walls and a reflective roof to keep its occupants cool and comfortable without air conditioning.