HOMEGROWN

Celebrate the culture of agriculture & share skills (Growing! Cooking! Eating!)

What skills would you want to include in a HOMEGROWN 101

It's time to create a place here on HOMEGROWN.org that is a welcoming place for newbies: people who are looking to dip their toes in the activities that we talk about here. Would you like to help?
A few of us have been discussing it, and I think it makes sense to have a library of  easy-to-follow how-tos so that people can try something out without getting discouraged by some of the more "advanced" discussions that happen here. There could also be discussions where people are free to ask ANY question - no matter how elementary. Judging by the sad state of my last tomato growing efforts, I sure could use some basic guidance.
So...where do we start? How about a list of topics? What do YOU think should be part of a HOMEGROWN 101?

As an example, some general topics that come to mind:
  • Gardening 101
    • Container gardening
    • Building a raised bed
    • How to test your soil


  • Composting 101
  • Food Preservation 101
    • Canning
    • Dehydrating
    • Lacto-fermentation


  • Cheese Making 101
What else?

Of course, the other part of this is who wants to help build it? :) Don't feel any pressure if you suggest a topic that you're not able to create a 101 for, but please consider taking on a part of the project and - together - we can make this happen! Much of the material already lives on HOMEGROWN! (Type a topic in the "search" field in the top right of the page and you'll see). All you would need to do is aggregate it into an introductory article on each topic.
Leave a comment here with your suggestions or shoot me an email if you'd like cornelia at farmaid dot org.
Thanks everyone - you're the ones who have made this such a rich resource - let's widen the circle!

Tags: 101, HOMEGROWN, beginner, how-to, newbie

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Rachel, it's a combination of gathering up the existing stuff (links and posts) here on HOMEGROWN and then writing an easy-to follow how-to. It could be a brand new article, or a summary of what's already out there.

rachel whetzel said:
Wait, I'm not sure what you're asking... do you need people to write for you?
Awesome! Thank you, Stacey! Whatever's easiest for you, but I would prefer a Word doc emailed to me: Cornelia at FarmAid.org. That way we can track changes and create a living document. Links live well in them, too.
This is a great option for the independent bookseller store - I'll check it out!!

Stacey said:
Thanks Cornelia!!! I'm ready to get started. Since we are starting the articles offline, do you have a preference on what application we should use to send it to you? Do you want us to just put the text in an email or attach it in a Microsoft Word doc? I'm excited to get started!!
One more thing...on the Indie bookstore idea: IndieBound allows you to link out to their site to search independent bookstores or we can link to specific books. More info here http://www.indiebound.org/spread-word. This may have been what you were thinking, but I thought I would share :)
Stacey

Here's an example of finding something on the site that can serve as the perfect how-to:

Sandor Katz on How To Make Sauerkraut:

http://www.homegrown.org/video/easy-sauerkraut-howto


So, lots of the information is already here, we just want to organize it into an easy-to-find, central place.
Well in that case, if you need people, I may be able to compile a pretty good list for chickens, and also worms.
Rachel, as witnessed in the Backyard Chickens group, you're the perfect one for this project - thank you for helping!!

rachel whetzel said:
Well in that case, if you need people, I may be able to compile a pretty good list for chickens, and also worms.
Do you have a time line for articles? I'm happy to help!

Cornelia said:
Rachel, as witnessed in the Backyard Chickens group, you're the perfect one for this project - thank you for helping!!

rachel whetzel said:
Well in that case, if you need people, I may be able to compile a pretty good list for chickens, and also worms.
Well, I'm not going to be able to focus on this in earnest until after the Farm Aid show (Oct. 2nd) and I see this as a rolling process. I imagine we will post articles as we get them, and as more volunteers step forward. I'd love for there to be something comprehensive by the new year, but I don't see this as needing to be a "finished project" before we publish it. It can continue to expand over the next few months. If someone has a great Container Gardening 101 that's ready to share, we'll share it right away!

rachel whetzel said:
Do you have a time line for articles? I'm happy to help!

Cornelia said:
Rachel, as witnessed in the Backyard Chickens group, you're the perfect one for this project - thank you for helping!!

rachel whetzel said:
Well in that case, if you need people, I may be able to compile a pretty good list for chickens, and also worms.
I would love to get involved in this. I could help with canning and bread making, both of which have completely taken over my free time these days.
I adore Sandor - he has such passion!

For those of you who want something to chew on before the official start here I have a video of milking goats (for our own consumption - not a big fancy dairy but our homestead) with a portable machine - I use a flamenco for music because we have LaMancha goats :-)


And here is a video I did on making chevre with our raw goat milk.


(hope these videos show up)
Hello,
I'm new to this site. I really like what I see.
I've had some great gardens over the years. Thanks to rabbit raising. I still have a very nice garden going on even in the fall. They say it was a bad year for tomatoes in many places-not here. They are still shooting over 6 ft fences and blooming like mad. It's a full time job just to keep them tied up!
I can offer some basic garden ideas, and much information on rabbit keeping. Call me a rabbit expert if you wish. I've kept rabbits for many years. Raising purebred blue ribbon show winners. They get better every year.
I feel my rabbits are key to my wonderful gardens. I never have to buy any fertilizer and the plants just thrive. Rock hard soil becomes like beach sand after a while when I put my bunny dirt mix on top. Something I'm doing now for the next garden. The earthworms thrive here. I've done this in many types of soil. The results are the same every time.
I do very well in floriculture and produce competition at the fair. Most of my entries were blue ribbon winners. Much to my surprise. I'm a newbie as far as this kind of competition.
I'm happy to share and learn here as well.

My project shifted to raising critical endangered rare breeds. Something not many people know about. There is many livestock breeds on the brink of extinction. Many only found in the U.S. The heritage of America could be lost. Some breeds have already gone extinct-so it can and will happen. Without notice.
I'd love to share that kind of information as well. There is trouble for every barnyard animal with breeds close to extinction. Poultry,pigs, sheep, goats, horses, cattle, rabbits-all have breeds on the critical list.

So what I'm doing is saving heritage rabbit breeds and heritage seeds. I do harvest seeds here. I'm sort of learning how to do this as I go.

I play in the garden and I learn as I go.
My latest garden adventure has been potato buckets. The potatoes also won first place at the county fair. Not bad for tossing peels into buckets and some of what I call my magic rabbit dirt on top. When I harvest the potatoes. The buckets are pure earthworm castingS. Black gold for the gardens.

I hope to learn more about canning & preserving foods. Since there is much that ends up rabbit food if not eaten in a timely manner. In a way it's recycling at it's finest. Rabbit feeds the soil- then gardens feed the rabbits.
Such a deal.
some type of timeline would be great too. for example try these 3 things this month, the next three the following month, etc. so people could make it a lifestyle not just a project to try out just once. i think this is great but it can be overwhelming sometimes. im new to the site and i think it is great!!!
Nika, these videos are so wonderful! Thank you for taking the time to make them, for sharing your expertise and for posting them here! I will re-post them in the show & tell section, too, because people NEED to see these!!


nika boyce said:
I adore Sandor - he has such passion!

For those of you who want something to chew on before the official start here I have a video of milking goats (for our own consumption - not a big fancy dairy but our homestead) with a portable machine - I use a flamenco for music because we have LaMancha goats :-)


And here is a video I did on making chevre with our raw goat milk.


(hope these videos show up)

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