Why we're discontinuing selling our produce at market

Submitted by Ben Stallings on Sun, 11/15/2015 - 20:35

[Revised 1/9/16 to add November and December income]

When people ask about our tenth of an acre, I frequently say, "We call it an urban farm, but it's more of a market garden." That's because for the last six years (2009-2015), we've brought essentially all of our produce to the farmers' market. What doesn't sell, we eat ourselves or preserve. We're going to try a different strategy in 2016, for a number of reasons, and I feel we owe our customers an explanation.

Announcing Attic Report Card!

Submitted by Ben Stallings on Mon, 10/26/2015 - 19:29

We are pleased to announce that we are now providing the Attic Report Card service to the Emporia area! This simple inspection of attic insulation takes only about 30 minutes and is offered free of charge or obligation. The completed report includes referrals to trusted contractors who can improve your attic's efficiency. Rural electric coop members can get their improvements financed for no money down; we are working on a similar deal for Westar customers.

The Ultimate Rain Barrel System

Submitted by Ben Stallings on Wed, 09/09/2015 - 17:46

Watch a demonstration of a model of this system on YouTube!

When people here in Emporia learn that I'm into ecological gardening, they often ask me to install rain barrels for them. I'm resistent to doing this for a number of reasons, all of which have to do with limitations in how rain barrels are usually built and connected. I think I've finally cracked the problem, so here's my modest proposal for how to do it right. But first...

"Heretics Unite" by Joel Salatin, 2014

Submitted by Ben Stallings on Sun, 10/26/2014 - 15:18

[Notes on a speech given October 26, 2014 at the Mother Earth News Fair, Topeka KS.]

Neighbors of Polyface Farm are not supportive, call names when interviewed.
Tension of heresy and orthodoxy is hardly a new thing, just gets applied to different things. Within living memory it was USDA policy to feed dead cows to cows. Orthodoxy today is that GMOs are great and will save the world.

Notes from Opening Panel

Submitted by Ben Stallings on Sat, 08/30/2014 - 22:02

Opening panel of the North American Permaculture Convergence, August 29, 2014

Penny Livingston-Stark, moderator

Scott Pittman, PRI USA and founder of Permaculture Credit Union: Bill Mollison took to the road teaching permaculture while Holmgren stayed put and did research. Mollison's first visit to the US was 1980-81. Pittman took every opportunity to learn from Mollison before his retirement. Mollison ended all classes by telling students they could now go teach and design, but this was not always a good idea and may be his biggest mistake.