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Homestead

Rick in the Garlic PatchCedar Grove Farm was founded 25 years ago, when it was just some bulldozed areas cleared out of a regrowing forest that had been clear-cut, slashed, and burned twenty years previous. Now it is a 40-50 year old forest with a working homestead in the middle. There is the main house, the 7 stall barn with hayloft capable of storing 1000 bales of hay, a small guest apartment with attached carport, a cob cottage, chicken coop, and assorted other sheds and outbuildings. The orchard is finally starting to yield boxes of fruit in the harvest season, and there are numerous gardens, using the deep mulch, no-till method, fertilized with organic compost. A herd of goats works at brush control in the woods and also provides milk and meat for the household and some neighbors. A flock of laying chickens provides eggs for the household and the local health food store.

Goats and zigzag fenceSome agroforestry is practiced here where brushy areas of the forest are fenced off, using the nearby dead cedar trees for a zigzag log rail fence and then running goats, and in the past, sometimes hogs or cattle, to clear the dense under brush and thin the overcrowded forest for eventual replanting with the resistant cedar seedlings.

Rick in home garden 1989There are numerous examples of natural building techniques here. The main house is a timber framed cordwood structure with passive solar heat. The first floor of the house is post and beam construction, all chainsaw milled from local, long dead cedar logs, and infilled with cedar cordwood, a wood masonry wall.

Cob CottageThere is a cob cottage nearing completion that is made from earth, sand and straw. It was started with a workshop put on by Cob Cottage Company in September of 2000, with over 20 people gathered here from around the world to learn about cob construction. It has a living roof composed of mosses and lichens and other drought resistant plants. The solarium on the guest apartment has a Apartment Solariumplastered over earthbag stemwall and an earthen floor for additional thermal mass. The outside trim on the glass is recycled plastic lumber.



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