Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

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LiveSimple
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Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by LiveSimple »

Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Currently in Midwest and working, planning to make a move to a more warmer cities.
One of the interest now is "Permaculture" or make our backyard garden to be self sufficient as much as possible.
Hence suggest any cities within the US, that may meet these needs.

With the COVID situation, work from home is possible and if not will retire or find another remote job, if need be.
Hence rural areas are fine, with 20 minutes to the city for hospitals, retail and other amenties.

Southern California : Looking at cities such from San Bernardino, Chino Hills, Murietta, Temecula, all the way to San Diego.
Texas : Looking at Austin
Florida : Looking at Orlando area, Lake Mary, Tampa, etc.

Will rent first in the area we want and buy later if we like the area

No frost for plants is a desirable option, then more plants / vegetables / fruit trees that can be grown year round almost is desierbale.

Any input you have is appreciated....do I need to add any other cities / states.
ThankYouJack
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by ThankYouJack »

Do you have a budget in mind for your house? Is Hawaii too far away or would feel too isolated?
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by LiveSimple »

Hawaii is possible as well. As we rent first we can rent for $2500 or buy a home for cash at $600 K to $750 K.
Also we are not looking to be on the beach or commutable to the city for job, more suburb so these budgets seems fine.

However why Hawaii ? and which Island, big island ( Kona / Hilo ) or Maui ? ( We do not like Honolulu, too busy !!! )
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by 000 »

LiveSimple wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 11:05 am One of the interest now is "Permaculture" or make our backyard garden to be self sufficient as much as possible.
Every State has arable plots. I think a bigger question is urban vs. rural depending on how far you want to take this. It seems it might be difficult to obtain a lot of land in the urban areas your mentioned in your post.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by LiveSimple »

000 wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 12:17 pm Every State has arable plots. I think a bigger question is urban vs. rural depending on how far you want to take this. It seems it might be difficult to obtain a lot of land in the urban areas your mentioned in your post.
Sure anything greater then 12,000 SF to 43,500 (an acre or so ). I see Orlando they are converting front yard to garden. Add a back yard with a compound, can get what we want.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by 000 »

LiveSimple wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 12:24 pm
000 wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 12:17 pm Every State has arable plots. I think a bigger question is urban vs. rural depending on how far you want to take this. It seems it might be difficult to obtain a lot of land in the urban areas your mentioned in your post.
Sure anything greater then 12,000 SF to 43,500 (an acre or so ). I see Orlando they are converting front yard to garden. Add a back yard with a compound, can get what we want.
I think the answer here is that other than obvious advice (don't buy a home in Nome, Alaska), it's going to come down more to the specific location than the region. Good soil, sun access, and regulations concerning fertilization, irrigation, and using your front yard could very greatly even within a specific municipality.

Good luck!
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by ThankYouJack »

LiveSimple wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 12:15 pm Hawaii is possible as well. As we rent first we can rent for $2500 or buy a home for cash at $600 K to $750 K.
Also we are not looking to be on the beach or commutable to the city for job, more suburb so these budgets seems fine.

However why Hawaii ? and which Island, big island ( Kona / Hilo ) or Maui ? ( We do not like Honolulu, too busy !!! )
With a $2.5k / $750k budget, I'm not sure I'd recommend SoCal. I know people are going to say of course you can live there for $750k which you can, but you can get so much more for your money elsewhere. I love CA but am not a fan of suburban sprawl or traffic. Maybe central CA would be an option?

I know Hawaii is super expensive too, but I love the climate (more so than TX or FL and even CA) and think it would be great for permaculture. Fresh fruit and flowers grow wild there.

So much comes down to personal preference and exact location. I've lived in CA, HI, the Southeast and Northeast. Everyplace has pros and cons and it's all about what you make of it :)
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by Watty »

LiveSimple wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 11:05 am One of the interest now is "Permaculture" or make our backyard garden to be self sufficient as much as possible.
Be sure to include water when you are figuring out if you can be self sufficient or not. If you bringing in water from 500 miles away to water your garden then that may not only be expensive in some of the areas you are looking at but it may also have an environmental impact if that is what you are trying to minimize. If you are in an area where the water you are using is being pumped from an underground aquifer that can also be a long term issue.

Trying to work in your garden in the summer in Florida could be brutal.

Depending on what you are really looking for then I would think any small town in the southeast might fit a lot of your criteria and be affordable. There are some college towns that would have good medical care for a rural area and there may be a lot more going on than many rural towns.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by MJS »

Do you want a Permaculture community as well as land?
For example, Tucson has a local center, courses, certified garden designers and a local MeetUp group (via Google or I can PM links)
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by LiveSimple »

Watty wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 1:00 pm If you bringing in water from 500 miles away to water your garden then that may not only be expensive in some of the areas you are looking at but it may also have an environmental impact if that is what you are trying to minimize.
Good point, did not think this much. However we will use minimal water when we plant fruit bearing trees and that'll take care after a few years, correct. Also we are not looking to grow more than we need, we do need variety though and year long as possible.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by LiveSimple »

MJS wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 1:24 pm Do you want a Permaculture community as well as land?
For example, Tucson has a local center, courses, certified garden designers and a local MeetUp group (via Google or I can PM links)
Yes if the community is tuned for permaculture a few things are assisting us, what ever works for them will work for us. Were can go the extra mile as needed in some areas / perspectives.

Yes I see more permaculture in Arizona.
http://www.sonoranpermaculture.org/cour ... PIbGTAZZ14

Watching Jake Maze in Tempe, AZ. His media inspired us in this permaculture, as well. He shows how to convert a normal home in AZ, to support a family vegetable / fruit needs.
https://www.facebook.com/LongevityGardensTempe/
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by marcopolo »

LiveSimple wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 11:05 am Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Currently in Midwest and working, planning to make a move to a more warmer cities.
One of the interest now is "Permaculture" or make our backyard garden to be self sufficient as much as possible.
Hence suggest any cities within the US, that may meet these needs.

With the COVID situation, work from home is possible and if not will retire or find another remote job, if need be.
Hence rural areas are fine, with 20 minutes to the city for hospitals, retail and other amenties.

Southern California : Looking at cities such from San Bernardino, Chino Hills, Murietta, Temecula, all the way to San Diego.
Texas : Looking at Austin
Florida : Looking at Orlando area, Lake Mary, Tampa, etc.

Will rent first in the area we want and buy later if we like the area

No frost for plants is a desirable option, then more plants / vegetables / fruit trees that can be grown year round almost is desierbale.

Any input you have is appreciated....do I need to add any other cities / states.
I would be more concerned about the culture than the the permaculture, but to stay on topic, it depends on what you want to grow and whether you want year round capability or seasonal.

For example, Temecula gets really hot in the summer and quite cold in the winter. That makes for a very different growing environment than a place that has more temperate climate all year around.

One of the main reason we chose Hawaii was for the mild year-round climate. Growing things was not the driver for that, but it is a nice side effect.
Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by gr7070 »

LiveSimple wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 1:27 pm However we will use minimal water when we plant fruit bearing trees and that'll take care after a few years, correct.
Not in Austin; trees sure, but not for a garden... it's kinda hot here.

And while it's not a dry heat Central Texas isn't all that wet. Certainly not like PacNW or the SE for rainfall and Austin probably is a good bit dryer than most of the Midwest, especially in the summer.

While Texas has a long or maybe considered two growing seasons it wouldn't seem like this is the ideal location if this is as significant a factor as it would seem to be for you.

I have planted a couple fruit trees I am far from a gardener. So take all this with a grain of salt.
One does have to be careful which fruit trees, not all are ideally suited to Austin's heat and occasional, somewhat rare winter freezes.
Last edited by gr7070 on Thu Jul 23, 2020 2:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by JS-Elcano »

LiveSimple wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 11:05 am Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Currently in Midwest and working, planning to make a move to a more warmer cities.
One of the interest now is "Permaculture" or make our backyard garden to be self sufficient as much as possible.
Hence suggest any cities within the US, that may meet these needs.

With the COVID situation, work from home is possible and if not will retire or find another remote job, if need be.
Hence rural areas are fine, with 20 minutes to the city for hospitals, retail and other amenties.

Southern California : Looking at cities such from San Bernardino, Chino Hills, Murietta, Temecula, all the way to San Diego.
Texas : Looking at Austin
Florida : Looking at Orlando area, Lake Mary, Tampa, etc.

Will rent first in the area we want and buy later if we like the area

No frost for plants is a desirable option, then more plants / vegetables / fruit trees that can be grown year round almost is desierbale.

Any input you have is appreciated....do I need to add any other cities / states.
Tampa/central Florida (or any part of Florida for that matter) is not suitable for gardening year-round. In the summer it just rains too much and it's too hot/humid for the kind of fruits and vegetables most people would consider for regular consumption. You could grow sweet potatoes (impossible to get rid of once established, so not suitable unless you have a lot of backyard) and okra, that's about it in the summer. Vegetable gardening is doable from October -April, though soil here is a challenge -- very sandy, nematodes, doesn't retain water-- as it doesn't rain very much outside of summer rainy season. I have been backyard gardening here for the past 10 years in raised beds and still learning what does well and what doesn't. It's definitely easier to garden in more northern temperate zones in the summer. IMO, of course :D
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by MikeWillRetire »

[/quote]

Tampa/central Florida (or any part of Florida for that matter) is not suitable for gardening year-round. In the summer it just rains too much and it's too hot/humid for the kind of fruits and vegetables most people would consider for regular consumption. You could grow sweet potatoes (impossible to get rid of once established, so not suitable unless you have a lot of backyard) and okra, that's about it in the summer. Vegetable gardening is doable from October -April, though soil here is a challenge -- very sandy, nematodes, doesn't retain water-- as it doesn't rain very much outside of summer rainy season. I have been backyard gardening here for the past 10 years in raised beds and still learning what does well and what doesn't. It's definitely easier to garden in more northern temperate zones in the summer. IMO, of course :D
[/quote]

F.Y.I. Here is a new youtube channel from a guy who gardens in Florida that you may be interested in.
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8WOhm ... eHPfisj3eg
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by JS-Elcano »

MikeWillRetire wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 2:05 pm F.Y.I. Here is a new youtube channel from a guy who gardens in Florida that you may be interested in.
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8WOhm ... eHPfisj3eg
That's great info! Thanks! Most of the things he grows I haven't even heard of. I think this is the way to go here in Florida - growing adapted plants. It's impossible to grow common veggies here in the summer, such as tomatoes, broccoli, kale, carrots, peppers, etc (though definitely possible in the winter), but I'll give his recommendations a try. As for fruit trees, I have success here in Tampa with papaya, peaches, star fruit and figs (if the birds, racoons and squirrels don't get to the fruit first). But none of the northern fruit trees like apple, pear, plum, cherries, etc, fruit here as they need cold periods to set fruit.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by Sandtrap »

LiveSimple wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 12:15 pm Hawaii is possible as well. As we rent first we can rent for $2500 or buy a home for cash at $600 K to $750 K.
Also we are not looking to be on the beach or commutable to the city for job, more suburb so these budgets seems fine.

However why Hawaii ? and which Island, big island ( Kona / Hilo ) or Maui ? ( We do not like Honolulu, too busy !!! )
Big Island
Hilo side has a lot of rain. No more south than that or it is ....a bit lawless and the volcano bog is nasty.
Kona side is great from Kamuela to captain cook.
You will need more money to get acreage.
Weather is perfect for growing.
Great for aquaponics!!!
Most places rain every night so water catchment is very popular to add to your system.
1-2 acres is ideal. More the better.
If you have 5 mil. Mana Road In Kamuela is heaven.
Culture is island global and mellow. Very chill.
You will not want to leave.

j🌺
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by Beehave »

Thee's a hydroponic farm just south of Tampa. Their website has a link discussing the local SW Florida growing season, and the site should be of interest for permaculture elsewhere - my suggestion being in a screened area (lanai) because of the density of growth and ease of access and some shade. (Edited to add, and facilitation ofinsect control).

In case this is of interest, here's a link: http://www.hydroharvestfarms.com/ourbea ... rdens.html

If you navigate the website, you'll see it mentions a phone number and willingness to discuss hydroponic systems. I've been to their u-pick farm (the lettuce and kale and greens are great) and the owners seem genuinely friendly and dedicated to their craft. It would seem to me that the space and water efficiency of hydroponics might enable you to widen your geographic search and reduce the amount of land required for your purpose.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by oldcomputerguy »

This topic is now in the Personal Consumer Issues forum.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by PoppyA »

There are plenty of you tube videos of permaculture plots in the central Florida area. I’d check Those out
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by megabad »

Any particular reason why only Austin in TX? There are much cheaper areas in TX. Any flexibility on the commute? 20 mins will highly increase your real estate costs in most of those regions you list. I think your budget in urban CA might not go as far as you think. I would think rural CA or rural semi coastal TX would be a great option that would be quite a bit cheaper.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by livesoft »

My in-laws living in Maine grow all their own food, so frost is not a problem if one harvests what they grow and stores it away before the snow starts.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by SB1234 »

LiveSimple wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 11:05 am Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Currently in Midwest and working, planning to make a move to a more warmer cities.
One of the interest now is "Permaculture" or make our backyard garden to be self sufficient as much as possible.
Hence suggest any cities within the US, that may meet these needs.

With the COVID situation, work from home is possible and if not will retire or find another remote job, if need be.
Hence rural areas are fine, with 20 minutes to the city for hospitals, retail and other amenties.

Southern California : Looking at cities such from San Bernardino, Chino Hills, Murietta, Temecula, all the way to San Diego.
Texas : Looking at Austin
Florida : Looking at Orlando area, Lake Mary, Tampa, etc.

Will rent first in the area we want and buy later if we like the area

No frost for plants is a desirable option, then more plants / vegetables / fruit trees that can be grown year round almost is desierbale.

Any input you have is appreciated....do I need to add any other cities / states.
If you haven't already check out the earthship concept. I thought it was pretty cool. Not really permaculture but kind of related. May give you some more ideas.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by LiveSimple »

SB1234 wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 6:52 pm
If you haven't already check out the earthship concept. I thought it was pretty cool. Not really permaculture but kind of related. May give you some more ideas.
Sure will check.

Also Food Forest and Urban Gardening, all are somewhat similar.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forest_gardening
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by Lynette »

I live in Michigan and at least we have a lot of water readily available. My sibling lives in South Africa in an area with an almost perfect climate but water is very scarce. So I think that water availability is a major factor. I am taking a gardening course at the moment and many of the lectures are on how to extend the season. This varies from humble row covers to fancy hoop covers that large farmers use. Michigan is a large producer of fruit such as apples and blueberries. The lake effect on the West of Michigan moderates the climate. Another lecture emphasized how difficult it is to grow perfect fruit - spray, spray, spray. I think you need to look carefully at the actual site of the place you want to buy .. hills, etc. Then there are the deer.. I am trying to decide if I want a raised bed to grow strawberries - too many squirrels and hungry backyard bunnies, raccoons etc.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by LiveSimple »

Lynette wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 7:14 pm I live in Michigan and at least we have a lot of water readily available. My sibling lives in South Africa in an area with an almost perfect climate but water is very scarce. So I think that water availability is a major factor. I am taking a gardening course at the moment and many of the lectures are on how to extend the season. This varies from humble row covers to fancy hoop covers that large farmers use. Michigan is a large producer of fruit such as apples and blueberries. The lake effect on the West of Michigan moderates the climate. Another lecture emphasized how difficult it is to grow perfect fruit - spray, spray, spray. I think you need to look carefully at the actual site of the place you want to buy .. hills, etc. Then there are the deer.. I am trying to decide if I want a raised bed to grow strawberries - too many squirrels and hungry backyard bunnies, raccoons etc.
Thank you very much. Yes we do need to see about water and extending the season...
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by btenny »

All of the California big Valley will fit your specs. Towns or farm areas from Redding to Palm Springs. Sacremento area even has UC Davis agriculture school.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by baconavocado »

I didn't read all the replies but if you're into gardening, you should probably locate to a place where there is water, and that eliminates most states in the west, except the upper northwest. I would check the avg annual rainfall charts for any place you're considering and make sure you get ppt in every month of the year. If you live in a Mediterranean climate, even if there is plentiful water (which there isn't in almost all areas in the west, and it's getting worse), you spend more than half your energy during the growing season just making sure your stuff has water. It's MUCH different than gardening in the midwest or the east where you get help from the skies.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by houseofnine »

We have a hobby farm in the upper Midwest and are implementing some permaculture practices. In February, I daydream about moving to Tennessee or somewhere with more moderate winters. If you are growing for yourself, it is easy to “put up” food for the non growing season and you will likely appreciate the break. You might also consider buying a farm from a retiring farmer. That way you have tillable land and (ideally) fruit trees and such already established.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by quantAndHold »

Most of the Southwest is a desert. Unless you’re planning on growing cactus and succulents, you’ll need to add water for at least part of the year.

Keep in mind that a lot of fruit trees need chill hours, and the places you’re considering don’t have a lot of that.

You might get a copy of the Western Garden Book and look at the zones and what grows in them.

It’s also hard to generalize climate on the west coast. Even a small hill in between your land and the ocean can significantly impact the how hot it is and how much sun you get.

You probably can’t find what you’re looking for for the price you want to pay anywhere in Southern California. Central California is probably a better bet.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by marcopolo »

Sandtrap wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 4:37 pm
LiveSimple wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 12:15 pm Hawaii is possible as well. As we rent first we can rent for $2500 or buy a home for cash at $600 K to $750 K.
Also we are not looking to be on the beach or commutable to the city for job, more suburb so these budgets seems fine.

However why Hawaii ? and which Island, big island ( Kona / Hilo ) or Maui ? ( We do not like Honolulu, too busy !!! )
Big Island
Hilo side has a lot of rain. No more south than that or it is ....a bit lawless and the volcano bog is nasty.
Kona side is great from Kamuela to captain cook.
You will need more money to get acreage.
Weather is perfect for growing.
Great for aquaponics!!!
Most places rain every night so water catchment is very popular to add to your system.
1-2 acres is ideal. More the better.
If you have 5 mil. Mana Road In Kamuela is heaven.
Culture is island global and mellow. Very chill.
You will not want to leave.

j🌺
+1
If you have the budget to do it, the Big Island is tough to beat, and it is pretty much the cheapest place in Hawaii.
Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by Tejfyy »

You might want to connect with small local farms in the areas you're considering. Here's one with a school.
https://www.wildwillowfarm.org/farmschool
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by LiveSimple »

Tejfyy wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 11:25 pm You might want to connect with small local farms in the areas you're considering. Here's one with a school.
https://www.wildwillowfarm.org/farmschool
Thanks will check.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by BarbBrooklyn »

Consider a property in a less extreme climate with a greenhouse to extend your growing "season" to include colder temps.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by Pu239 »

One doesn't need to live down south to have a productive garden. Chicago area "One Yard Revolution" gardener Patrick Dolan has a great series of Youtube videos devoted to maximizing production from a regular urban yard. Quite impressive.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by Lalamimi »

Thinking near Corpus Christi Texas sounds good. Lots of small towns around it, on way to San Antonio. Just remember HOA rules if end up in a subdivision. Most do not allow front yard gardens or rain collection systems. We sold our place on 10 acres south of Austin for over $600K 2 years ago.
And bought on an acre just west of Houston. Clay soil sucks for gardening.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by stuper1 »

btenny wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 7:26 pm All of the California big Valley will fit your specs. Towns or farm areas from Redding to Palm Springs. Sacremento area even has UC Davis agriculture school.
Foothill areas adjacent to California's Central Valley have a nice Mediterranean climate and are relatively affordable. Places like Prather or Coarsegold or many others.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by Sandi_k »

I grew up in CA's San Bernardino county. It's high desert, not mild climate at all in the summer. Temp swings can be 50 degrees between nighttime (70 degrees) and daytime (120 degrees). Murrieta is similar; and Chino is just plain urban.

I would suggest an agricultural area closer to central CA - such as Santa Maria, Oxnard, or Simi Valley.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by Stumptowngal »

I've been an avid reader and learner on this forum for a year plus and have thought often about registering. Who knew it would be a retirement and permaculture thread that would give me the final push today.

I suggest another option which I haven't seen mentioned: Oregon

The culture for permaculture is strong in the Pacific Northwest. Most residents understand the concept and many dabble in it or practice it to some degree. My own son ripped the sod out of his urban front yard and converted it over to year-round crops.

Speaking as a former Midwesterner myself, the climate along the coast, in the Willamette Valley (think Oregon Pinot Noir area) and up into Portland is not extreme. I haven't seen snow in our metro area in a couple of years. There can be some nights of frost, but not very often. Summers are a beautiful time to be outdoors here.

There are numerous local and state resources for education and support about permaculture growing as well as workshops and social opportunities.

On the downside, Oregon taxes aren't particularly good for retirees; but living just across the Columbia River along the gorge in Washington would solve much of that problem.

I hope you enjoy the search. We moved out here from the Midwest over a dozen years ago and haven't regretted it.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by mkc »

gr7070 wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 1:49 pm
LiveSimple wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 1:27 pm However we will use minimal water when we plant fruit bearing trees and that'll take care after a few years, correct.
Not in Austin; trees sure, but not for a garden... it's kinda hot here.
Having lived in Austin for a number of years, where you can plant things that require soil, rather than rock/caliche, depend on which side of the interstate you are on. We lived in the northwest (formerly rural, now master planned communities) area and planting anything in the ground was extremely difficult. Pick ax difficult. We have photos of me in the space jack hammered out for our engineered septic system - solid rock deeper than I am tall, with 6 inches of caliche just below 1 inch of dirt at the surface. Anything we grew was done in raised beds. Water can be an issue in central Texas as well - many people vying for what's available in the aquafers. It was very common to see water restrictions in place. I recall the summer of 1993 - over 100 days without a drop of rain. 2006 we knew folks whose wells ran dry.

The east side of the interstate is where most of the farming occurs. Any fruit orchards or vegetable growers we encountered relied heavily on irrigation.
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gr7070
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by gr7070 »

mkc wrote: Fri Jul 24, 2020 5:02 pm
gr7070 wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 1:49 pm
LiveSimple wrote: Thu Jul 23, 2020 1:27 pm However we will use minimal water when we plant fruit bearing trees and that'll take care after a few years, correct.
Not in Austin; trees sure, but not for a garden... it's kinda hot here.
Having lived in Austin for a number of years, where you can plant things that require soil, rather than rock/caliche, depend on which side of the interstate you are on. We lived in the northwest (formerly rural, now master planned communities) area and planting anything in the ground was extremely difficult. Pick ax difficult. We have photos of me in the space jack hammered out for our engineered septic system - solid rock deeper than I am tall, with 6 inches of caliche just below 1 inch of dirt at the surface. Anything we grew was done in raised beds. Water can be an issue in central Texas as well - many people vying for what's available in the aquafers. It was very common to see water restrictions in place. I recall the summer of 1993 - over 100 days without a drop of rain. 2006 we knew folks whose wells ran dry.

The east side of the interstate is where most of the farming occurs. Any fruit orchards or vegetable growers we encountered relied heavily on irrigation.
Yes to all that.

It takes me multiple hours of very hard work to "dig" a small hole to plant a small tree. Dig means breaking shovel handles and using 6' steel pry bar.

Austin isn't the place for OP, at least not if they're moving somewhere with this specifically in mind.
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LiveSimple
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by LiveSimple »

Stumptowngal wrote: Fri Jul 24, 2020 3:54 pm I've been an avid reader and learner on this forum for a year plus and have thought often about registering. Who knew it would be a retirement and permaculture thread that would give me the final push today.
Stumptowngal appreciate you registering and responding, happy to see that it moved you to post -- LiveSimple
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by GAAP »

If you truly want to be self-sufficient, choose a location that provides all of your water on-property -- preferably with natural rainfall. That will. of course, limit you to a great degree in the western states -- parts of Oregon and Washington, and (doubtfully) part of California. Water issues are getting worse in the west. Tapping a well into a disappearing aquifer is not much better than depending on municipal water from an over-allocated drainage.
“Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own.” ― Bruce Lee
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by One Ping »

What about SLO (San Luis Obispo)? If I remember correctly, it should have a fairly moderate climate ... being close enough to the coast to avoid some of the extreme(?) heat of the central valleys, but far enough inland to be reasonably warm and dry most of the year.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by Strummer »

I'd also recommend a look at Oregon. Your money will go pretty far there and, as mentioned, there's a strong permaculture community. Oregon State offers a free permaculture class as well as a variety of other courses, including a certification in permaculture design.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by AerialWombat »

I will third the PNW suggestion, west of the Cascades. Either OR or WA. There is a very robust permaculture culture up here. On my acre of dirt, I have mature fruit trees, plenty of water, could be close to self-sufficient if I weren’t a lazy slacker. In my specific location, homes with a little bit of land cost half what you’re aiming for, and the local ag community is very “progressive”. Look for something in the “rain shadow” of a mountain peak for more sun.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by celia »

I have a relative who is doing what you are proposing in Fallbrook, CA, where I think there is a similar community.

The problem with a lot of California, though, is that we often have drought that lasts several YEARS. Many trees in the Central Valley (think Fresno area) had to be cut down (especially nut trees) because it wasn't cost effective to use the tons of water they required.

Couple that with wildfires, and all your work could just disappear. California also has large areas without local fire departments and then the state fire department jumps in with assistance from available fire agencies.

I found the wikipedia article on Permaculture interesting. I'd never heard of this before:
Hügelkultur
Hügelkultur is the practice of burying large volumes of wood to increase soil water retention. The porous structure of wood acts as a sponge when decomposing underground. During the rainy season, masses of buried wood can absorb enough water to sustain crops through the dry season.[41]
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by Valuethinker »

Bear in mind the warnings about heat waves, drought and water shortages.

The modelling is not perfect on a regional level- too many complexities. A change in an ocean current on the other side of the planet can impact the climate in some part of North America.

That said it's a good bet that the heat waves will get longer and hotter, the droughts longer. If an area is subject to heavy rains they will get heavier. (The pattern in England seems to longer dry periods and much heavier rainfall and flooding when it does rain). If hurricanes they are likely to be stronger. Wildfires are going to be worse.

FWIW what you suggest is almost possible in England especially in SW England (counties of Devon and Cornwall) where the moderation of the Gulf Stream is large.

That climate is most similar to the Pacific NW coastal areas of USA.

People do live like this in Canada on Vancouver Island and in the islands between mainland Vancouver (city) and the island itself.

But I do know Salt Spring Island for example they have big water shortage issues. It is Shangra La but you got to have water. Dependence on groundwater is problematic because w increasing demand it runs out.

Bears are a constant problem in much if the Pacific NW. Intelligent omnivorous and w a keen sense of smell human agriculture and garbage are just too enticing. One can destroy a whole garden quite easily.

I must admit I always fancied Spokane WA (,because i used to watch their tv station but have never been there) but i think it is totally the wrong climate. That would also be true of Ellensberg WA I think.

Like minded people will be important in this. Neighbours to help you out. One problem w Hawaii say is isolation from family in rest of USA. As you get very old it becomes important to have someone who can intervene on your behalf. My rural dwelling relations in Ontario have moved into the towns in old age.

Over time you may be able to use solar generated electricity and solar hot water for your energy needs, and have an Electric Vehicle. I have seen installations that use several thousand litre water tanks, or large amounts of crushed rock, to store solar heat for winter hot water.

Don't underestimate the amount of financial capital you will need to get all of this up and running. You want a comfortable amount if cash post purchase.

I am dubious any of us can sever ourselves from civilisation in its entirety. Medical and dental care for example. (Not to imply that this is your goal).
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celia
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by celia »

Valuethinker wrote: Sat Jul 25, 2020 2:48 am Don't underestimate the amount of financial capital you will need to get all of this up and running. You want a comfortable amount if cash post purchase.
A good way to minimize a capital outlay is to look for a property that is already doing permaculture. Setting that as a search keyword on Zillow.com could help.
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Re: Retirement Relocation - Permaculture - Western and Southern Cities

Post by Carefreeap »

celia wrote: Sat Jul 25, 2020 1:39 am I have a relative who is doing what you are proposing in Fallbrook, CA, where I think there is a similar community.

The problem with a lot of California, though, is that we often have drought that lasts several YEARS. Many trees in the Central Valley (think Fresno area) had to be cut down (especially nut trees) because it wasn't cost effective to use the tons of water they required.

Couple that with wildfires, and all your work could just disappear. California also has large areas without local fire departments and then the state fire department jumps in with assistance from available fire agencies.

I found the wikipedia article on Permaculture interesting. I'd never heard of this before:
Hügelkultur
Hügelkultur is the practice of burying large volumes of wood to increase soil water retention. The porous structure of wood acts as a sponge when decomposing underground. During the rainy season, masses of buried wood can absorb enough water to sustain crops through the dry season.[41]
My father and his girlfriend lived in near by Valley Center for 20 years and enjoyed it very much. Hospitals are about 20 minutes away in Escondido. Escondido would be another choice as well. North and east of Temecula is Anza another community to check out. Temecula is fast becoming more of a suburban area and the health related facility building boom is stunning.
Every day I can hike is a good day.
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