Completely Self sufficient systems

Apr 13, 2021
373
702
176
Australia
What are some completely self sufficient and sustainable systems we could all use. For example one is growing food in the garden to feed rabbits them using rabbits for dog an human food.

In the cycle you need food to feed things everything has to have a job to serve something else, this is how it works in nature.
 

My Bagurks

Songster
Sep 3, 2020
111
293
116
Tuscaloosa, Alabama
I’d like to get to that point some day, but for now I’ve taken baby steps.
When I clean the coop out, I throw it in the run. Once a year I clean the run out and pile it up to compost. The following year, that pile goes on my garden to sit through winter. I don’t use any insecticide or anything so a lot of what my garden produces goes to the chickens.
So there’s at least a little bit of a cycle going.
 

U_Stormcrow

Free Ranging
Jun 7, 2020
5,097
15,287
606
North FL Panhandle Region / Wiregrass
Think small, scale up. I collect rainwater in the gutters on my barn, and my goat house. That water fills 275 gal poly totes (one for each), which are connected to watering cups and gravity feed livestock tank fillers, ensuring my animals always have multiple water sources, no effort by me.

Deep litter becomes compost, which is then tilled into the garden soil. Goat droppings are collected and piled around certain non-grass plants, where they are slowly watered in and decay to enrich the soil (around my grapes, mostly).

and I'm working on a biodiverse polyculture (my acres of weeds) which requires no planting/tilling efforts by me to maintain, just periodic and selective weeding. It is not, however, intended as a complete dietary replacement, simply an "enrichment" for my flock and a way to bend the feed cost curve somewhat.

Subsistance SUCKS. Modern society exists due to specialization, and has advanced in large part due to the improvement of transit systems (and, eventually, refrigeration) - you can't do that at home, the scale doesn't exist for it.
 

Sally PB

Crossing the Road
Premium Feather Member
Aug 7, 2020
9,297
41,857
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Belding, MI
Think small, scale up.
Exactly.

What can I grow/produce/harvest? Gardening, hunting, raising animals, collecting rainwater, fishing, cutting firewood...

What do I have to buy? Frankly, I can't see not buying stuff like olive oil, or salt, or toilet paper. And I still have to pay property taxes and maintain a vehicle, among other things.

What can I live without? Frankly, I can give up a lot of stuff. If I have to.

And a big one: How hard am I willing to work on all of this? This is WAY more work than having a job and buying what you need. Am I able to do all that work?

If you are ever in the position to have to live this way, putting thought and experience into beforehand will be very beneficial.
 

saysfaa

Crowing
Jul 1, 2017
1,210
2,718
281
Upper Midwest, USA
Accommodating pollinators is a good place to start. Honey bees are hard but planting a bit of bee pasture to fill in pollen dearths, setting out some water with pebbles sticking out, setting out some housing is easy.

Discouraging invasive species or at least not transporting them makes a huge difference.

A garden (pots or part of landscaping make a good start) and chickens next. And/or properly storing food or at least using food in more basic forms.

The 80/20 rule applies. The 80/20 rule applies to the 80% and to the 20% too.
 

U_Stormcrow

Free Ranging
Jun 7, 2020
5,097
15,287
606
North FL Panhandle Region / Wiregrass
Kelp is a good trace mineral source, and depending on variety, can be a good prtein source, too - once dried. But unless you live on the seashore and gather it off your beach, that's not really sustainable living to bring it in.

Invasives??? Yeah, well meaning, hard working, people brought kudzu in for use as a high protein feed they could grow on site. Thanks, no. If people who worked a lot harder than I plan to couldn't control it, I definitely have no chance.
 

Red-Stars-in-RI

Crowing
7 Years
Mar 24, 2014
1,382
3,312
316
Rhode Island
I’m not on the beach, but I live a lot closer to the ocean than the corn fields of the Midwest. An insane amount of agricultural land goes to producing animal feed…with all the chemical fertilizer, runoff, erosion that go with it. If the critters could eat kelp instead, the environmental effects would be huge.

And I wouldn’t suggest planting invasives to feed livestock, but if existing infestations could be controlled with livestock, either by grazing (or hunting/fishing invasive animals) then that’d be more sustainable too.
 

U_Stormcrow

Free Ranging
Jun 7, 2020
5,097
15,287
606
North FL Panhandle Region / Wiregrass
And I wouldn’t suggest planting invasives to feed livestock, but if existing infestations could be controlled with livestock, either by grazing (or hunting/fishing invasive animals) then that’d be more sustainable too.

Even if not sustainable, it would be an improvement!
 

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