Nova bonsai garden

markyscott

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We're legally limited to 110 gallons of collected rain water here, and it's not hard to burn through that much between rains.
I'm a bit jealous.
I’d say not. I measured my water use from the meter before I left Houston. I could easily use 50 gallons a day watering my collection.

Virginia is pretty ideal for this setup. We get about 44” a year where I live. No water shortages means that collection is not tightly regulated. In fact it’s encouraged. Precipitation is pretty steady throughout the year. The highest precipitation average is in summer (~4” per month) coincident with my highest usage. Costs were easily competitive with drilling a well. We’ll see about reliability, but I’ll have a back up in place for that.

In my application, I’ve bought a 1500 gallon in ground tank. I estimate that 2” of rain should fill it. However, I plan on putting French drains alongside the high tunnel and plumbing those in as well. That will almost double the rainwater I collect. Should be an interesting experiment.

s
 

ShadyStump

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I’d say not. I measured my water use from the meter before I left Houston. I could easily use 50 gallons a day watering my collection.

Virginia is pretty ideal for this setup. We get about 44” a year where I live. No water shortages means that collection is not tightly regulated. In fact it’s encouraged. Precipitation is pretty steady throughout the year. The highest precipitation average is in summer (~4” per month) coincident with my highest usage. Costs were easily competitive with drilling a well. We’ll see about reliability, but I’ll have a back up in place for that.

In my application, I’ve bought a 1500 gallon in ground tank. I estimate that 2” of rain should fill it. However, I plan on putting French drains alongside the high tunnel and plumbing those in as well. That will almost double the rainwater I collect. Should be an interesting experiment.

s
I'm looking forward to seeing how it goes. I'm really interested in the idea of self-contained resource management systems. Issue there is all the info you can ever find is geared toward preppers, or from hippie types who are half-assing it to put it mildly.
 

markyscott

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I'm looking forward to seeing how it goes. I'm really interested in the idea of self-contained resource management systems. Issue there is all the info you can ever find is geared toward preppers, or from hippie types who are half-assing it to put it mildly.
Yes - I’ve watched plenty of prepper DIY videos getting ready for this. I’ll be sure to document everything carefully- including my mistakes. Hopefully we’ll all learn together and perhaps some of you can catch a mistake before I make it!

S
 

rockm

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Yes - I’ve watched plenty of prepper DIY videos getting ready for this. I’ll be sure to document everything carefully- including my mistakes. Hopefully we’ll all learn together and perhaps some of you can catch a mistake before I make it!

S
Funny, You had one of the most "prepper" sites ever to exist only a 100 miles southwest...When I was a kid in the Shenandoah Valley in the 70's, there were many rumors circulating about this facility.

 

markyscott

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Lots of activity today. Putting up a split rail fence around the garden area and started excavating for the cistern. There are a lot of rocks, but they’re heavily fractured. Progress was slow, but we were able to break most of the rocks apart with the mini ex.

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penumbra

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You are in a good place for decent soil. Most of what is on the east side of the ridge is very good. The west side is nowhere near as good. And once you go over the river, the soil is horrible. That is where I live, base of the Massanutten Mtns. When I lived in Markham, just east of you, we had great soil. That was 30 years ago.
But then..........there is the rocks where you are, and plenty of them. The top of the ridge is much rockier. When I was landscaping up there years ago I had to bring topsoil with me. Every time I dug a hole and took out the rocks, there wasn't enough left to fill the holes.
 

markyscott

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You are in a good place for decent soil. Most of what is on the east side of the ridge is very good. The west side is nowhere near as good. And once you go over the river, the soil is horrible. That is where I live, base of the Massanutten Mtns. When I lived in Markham, just east of you, we had great soil. That was 30 years ago.
But then..........there is the rocks where you are, and plenty of them. The top of the ridge is much rockier. When I was landscaping up there years ago I had to bring topsoil with me. Every time I dug a hole and took out the rocks, there wasn't enough left to fill the holes.
The soil seems pretty good on our land - we had it analyzed before we purchased the property. Kind of high in phosphorous - probably due to the decades of cattle on the property. Where I am temporarily staying in White Post, it is pretty shallow soil over limestone bedrock. Probably very similar to your situation in Front Royal. Great hiking in the Massanutten Mtns though - Strickler’s Knob is one of my favorite.

- S
 

markyscott

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The boy and I in action! We struggled with the first couple of posts, but it definitely got easier as we went on. Don’t know what I’m going to do without him when he heads off to college. 😢

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markyscott

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Looking good, are you going to have livestock? Just wondering about the fence.
We have cattle on the property now. At some point, I’ll fence them out of the entire pasture where the barn is. For now, the fence is meant to keep them out of the garden and away from the barn.
 

penumbra

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Seriously, I would love to meet you in person and see your slice of heaven. We are neighbors after all.
 

Bonsai Nut

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Last weekend I drove up to a family reunion in McLean VA. Drove up the 81 through the valley, and then the 66 east towards DC. I was probably only a couple of miles from your spread!
 

rockm

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Last weekend I drove up to a family reunion in McLean VA. Drove up the 81 through the valley, and then the 66 east towards DC. I was probably only a couple of miles from your spread!
You were 9 miles from my house in NoVa 😁 . You also drove by my old hometown over in the Valley on your way.
 

BobbyLane

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There's a guy who I follow on youtube who bought some acres of land in Texas, he documented the whole process from scoping out the land, building perimeter fences and gates, then recorded the builders coming in with trucks and installing everything from water tanks, sumps, piping etc, you see the house being built from the ground up. his property backs onto a national forest, he hunts hogs and deer too, pretty cool stuff. You guys have so much space out there.
 
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