Jan 282011

Here’s a series of videos (total of 40 minutes) by an entrepreneurial Texas  gardener who talks about the motivations for storing and growing food and then how to get started. She’s in the Austin area and I was impressed that she has 34,000 gallons of rainwater catchment for her backyard garden and animals. That got my attention. And even though I’m not sure bio-intensive gardening (the Jeavons method) is the proper method for our area, I think it is always of value to listen to someone who has walked the walk. Yes, she’s trying to sell a video and perhaps doesn’t have enough years of homesteading under her belt to qualify as an expert. On the other hand, anyone who is actually doing what she is doing is light years ahead of 99% of the population. Here’s her website which is actually kind of interesting and below her talk in four parts at a book fair in Austin. (I wonder if Marjory Wildcraft is her nom de jardin. I must think of one for myself if I ever want to hit the lecture circuit).






  7 Responses to “Marjory Wildcraft”

  1. How about “Randy Ruffsit”?

  2. Since I’m in Hawaii at the moment I’m leaning toward “Hula Hoe.”

  3. She hit’s hard. Guess Texan can’t do without meat. She ‘almost’ mentioned that a pound of meat requires 16 pounds of grain. For non-competiton of resources on the island, I’d suggest taking goats on browsing tours of the forest (knowing your goat poisonous plants first). ..or there’s deer hunting, but that needs done sustainably too. (unlike how our ocean fish supply has been dealt with till recent deep sea farming plans (just plans so far)).

    They say not to eat wild shrimp because 15/16 of the harvest is junk fish they slaughter and dump, but I’m guessing that the big picture would reveal that those shrimp aren’t possible without the waste slaughter as well, unless you want to grain feed them. Tilapia grow with very little food, but I’m guessing they don’t return as much waste for plankton either. Perhaps we can shift the balance of life a bit, but I’m guessing that the further we research, the further we will find that we already had the best balance for keeping species alive. That’s not to say against intensification working. It’s not a zero-sum planet as far as dirt and life goes. We could stand to have a lot of deserts restored to ancient forests, like in ‘Dune’. It’s probably possible with construction of a lot of desalination aqueducts to change global rain patterns. Anyhow, not anything we will be putting our own shovels to, just a shred of optimism.

    Even further off subject, I hear they are thinking to put water (modern windmill style) turbines in the Bellingham channels. Good idea, just make sure if local hearings come up, to make sure they spring for conical fish fencing around them (water through, fish deflected) (otherwise the channel becomes Saturdays Night Live’s blender called the Bassmaster 3000, and churn out tons of fish smoothies). – Look at sattelite photos of just piers on beaches though (sand on one side, not the other). It will change the channel topography. Better to have mobile anchor/tether systems than foundations.

    Composting can go wrong and needs learned as well. Tossing all your veggie scraps in one place (I used a Victorian bathtub) and turning it over at times isn’t always enough. Worms help.

    Nice chart she had corresponding oil index directly to food price index.

    This was scary. I had no idea 4000 sq ft could be required just for a single survival diet. So much for Los Angeles apartment gardens (and 20-40 million people here). People don’t even have that much rooftop. ..and water 4000*.6/7 = 343 gal/day/person. No wonder the Colorado and Sacramento rivers no longer reach the ocean.

    I didn’t figure on so much being required to sustain earth fertility.

    For long term LI development, I might suggest a ridge trail fire road lined with windmills, farming, and a diurnal-pressure desalination pumping network, all rolled into one. You just need to find 4000 empty oil drums somewhere, and grab 1000 used car alternators.

    Perhaps deer dung is a harvestable for compost. (There are deer there, aren’t there?)

    I suppose what we can use next is a guide to the most efficient food growing sources for the North West.

  4. Kristal Rose

    I think the 4000 sq ft comes from the Jeavons biointensive method. You would find diagreement in other gardening sources. One argument is that it’s not the quantity but the nutritional quality.

  5. Marjory’s facility at 3500 Bliss Spillar Road in Manchaca is the envy of the community. I tease her about having enough grains stored to feed an army. haha

    She’s an inspiration to us all.



  6. Marjory is truly great. She is inspiration for people to learn how to grow their own food. It will also come in handy when disasters happen and there is a food shortage, like an EMP. Marjory is going to actually be on a radio blog show Wednesday January 11th, 2012 to talk about these things. It should be really great to hear, here’s the link: http://empactradio.org/pvp/episode83-marjory-wildcraft/

  7. Actually I noticed that they made a date change for Marjory being on EMPact Radio from January 11th, to January 18th. Sorry about that!

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