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Homesteading in Ukraine

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I decided to put this this thread in hobbies. I didn't know what would be the most appropriate.

There are more than a couple of us building homes and I thought it would be cool to share experiences and trade advice. Ukraine is known for being one of the most fertile places on earth and having a homestead here seems to me to be one of the truest forms of wealth to have with crazy global economic and environmental problems.

Unfortunately, Ukraine is also lacking in aesthetics so each new homestead increases wealth and value and beauty(or at least order depending on taste).

I grew up in a historically agrarian culture after living the 12 year of my adult life in high-tech, overstimulating consumerism I'm eager to return to living on the land and for my children to do the same. I want to be more of a producer than a consumer.

There is a part in Faust where the devil says that immortality can be achieved by growing your food in your own manure. I'm not sure about that but producing as much of our own food as possible is a priority for my family and our homestead is planned to be a green, environmentally friendly, ecological project.

We have 11 sotka. We've cleared the brush out and planted a garden already.

I dug up the sod, shook the soil loose from the roots and threw them into a pile which I going to use to compost. I will build a bin this weekend with some of the old lumber I piled up. We plan to have a chicken coup and collect their manure but for now the neighbors have 4 geese which s%&t on property which we can add for nitrogen and bacteria. We're also collecting our potato peels and other scraps to add as well. The soil is a bit sandy but seems rich enough. I didn't find many earthworms but I did find a colorado bug :( I burned a pile of brush and sticks and incorporated the ash into the soil before we planted.

We have 5 apple trees on the property but I am going to remove 4 of them. They're old and we don't need that many apples. We have a large patch of strawberries that the previous owner planted and some blackberry and raspberry bushes. We planted more of each as well as some flowers.

In the garden we put in onions, carrots, beets, green peas, sorrel, zucchini and radish. Later will dig more and put in cucumbers, tomatoes, pumpkins, beans, chili peppers, cauliflowers and brussel sprouts as well as some pestril, dill, rucola and basil. I'd also like to find some rhubarb to plant.

We have additional plot of land in the field behind the house but we will need a tractor to till. I can dig but I don't have enough time.

We picked the weeds from most of the property. It was full of stinging nettles. We plan to use a lot stone in the landscaping. I think cutting grass is a pain and not worthwhile.

A fence is a one of the first priorities. They're not common where I'm from but there homes are more spaced out. Robert Frost says that good fences make good neighbors. We do have neighbors on one side of the property. The other side is an wooded lot which we plan to buy if possible. Our neighbor seem rather poor. There are four children which look healthy and clean but their property is in shambles. They usually just stare at us. My wife is trying to make friends with them. We discussed perhaps having them do some chores like bringing water from the well and to pay them something to help them.

We have a nice root cellar. It's dry and large. I plan to put a new door on and cover the cement with moss.

There is a very old barn that eventually I will tear down. It has about a rik of chopped wood inside and after I cut down the apple trees I will stack in there. There is also a small workshop that will be good during construction of the house we are using for planting seedlings and keeping gardening tools.

The house is not much to look at. We will destroy it eventually but it is is good enough condition to house the men while constructing the house. We're going to build it behind the old house in the last picture.

the workshop.

God, I cannot think of a better way to end up with blisters all over your fingers than one of those Ukrainian spades/shovels!

It will be easier on your hands if you obtain a proper spade! Failing that, screw a bit of wood (edges rounded off) on to the end of the staff!


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