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Cosmicsloth42 wrote

How off the gird are we talking? Do you just want to live homestead style and cultivate your own land and use solar panels and turbines for power? Do you want to disappear vagabond style? Also where do you want to do this, trying to go off the grid in the south east US will be completely different then going off the grid in Alaska or the Midwest.

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Halstan wrote

Good questions. I'm in the northwest and just looking to practice practical growing and learn about alternative energy sources. I'm a beginner. Thanks for taking the time.

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Cosmicsloth42 wrote

No problem man, my pleasure.

First I should let you know that I am in no way an expert in this stuff and you need to be sure to do a lot of research on your own. However I do have a little experience with growing crops.

Obviously food and water is going to be some of your first concern. Just like retail it is all about location, location, location. You are gonna have to figure out where you're water source is going to come from. A river works if you have nothing else available but if you ever have a dry year (it's the northwest so probobly not but important to think about) you may have drastically reduced water supply. It would also be susceptible to contaminants like bacteria, diseases, and parasites. Because of this most people opt to dig a well. Problem is, Wells are expensive, especially if there isn't an aquifer relatively close to the surface. I have no idea how you would go about building one on your own but water will be the most important thing out there for you so it may not be worth it to risk it. Especially because your food will depend on it as well as you.

A lot of people jump into gardening and horticulture thinking they are just gonna throw down some seeds, water them once a day and they will have some food in no time. This is a gross simplification of it. First, you have to get your soil ready. It's gonna take some time for this to happen, at least a season, most likely two. This is were it is important to remember that going off the gird is not one big jump. It is a slow preparation and you need to make sure everything is as perfect as you can get it to avoid taking any unnecessary risks. Plan out what crops you want to grow, some plants that grow well in the pacific north west are: peas, leaks, greens (lettuce, kale, spinach). I hear artichokes grow well but I am not 100% certain. I would plan to grow corn or wheat, and potatoes. These are packed full of carbohydrates and lord knows you are gonna need them. You will want to start a compost, that means anything that can decompose you will throw into a pile and let it decompose. (keep the pile in an isolated area away from your home, you do not want that smell near you and you don't want to get sick from it) This is also where you are gonna want to put your...personal waste. You can buy a 'composting toilet' for around $1000 (might be able to find them cheaper but I haven't looked to much into them) or if you are okay with not having an indoor bathroom a bucket works just fine. The compost is going to be your fertilizer (manure is just a type of fertilizer). To keep your soil from getting to nutrient deprived I would look into crop rotations for the crops you plant to plant, that way you wont end up with a dust bowl scenario.

On an added note I would recommend getting chickens or guineas. They are fairly low maintenance, they find there own food and eat insects, and they will give you eggs (if you have never raised chickens, eggs you get from chickens you raise taste 1000x better).

I don't have a lot of experience with alternative energy but the important thing is you know what you are doing when you set up your power grid. All it takes is one faulty or misplaced wire to start and electrical fire, and if you are off the grid it will be a while till someone can come and help you. For the northwest I would imagine a mix between solar and wind would be your best setup. Remember thought that you will not be producing as much as you may currently use. A gaming PC with RBG lights is probobly not the best idea for homesteading. If you want to get ready for a possible future now start looking for ways to reduce your power consumption now. I'll see if I can find some videos about power systems for a homestead here in a bit.

If you have any more questions feel free to message me and I'm sorry about the wall of text.

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boringskip wrote (edited )

I wouldn't recommend composting poop unless you really know what you're doing. Carnivore/Omnivore waste is full of nasty stuff, it takes a year or more to decompose safely. DDG Humanure. Food waste and pee is fine. I pee on my compost all the time.

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Cosmicsloth42 wrote

Probably should have included that, but that's certainly something people need to research on.

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Halstan wrote

This is fantastic. Thank you comrade. You have just shown me the quality of people in this site. I got a well and have grown some kale, but now i got a lot more things to think about.