Ever since I was a little boy (in grade school) I have been fascinated with living sustainably. I remember back then that there was a lot of talk about “peak” oil, food, air, population, etc. and that the world was “almost at its limit.”
I remember reading an article in Scientific American about how all that “peak” stuff was just non-sense. The author of the article pointed out that if you gave every man, woman and child on the planet 1 acre of land each that they would all fit in the state of Texas. I thought that couldn’t be right so I looked it up and sure enough it was true.
But, that brought up the next question, one that I’ve been puzzling on since then, that is if you give everyone an acre of land is it sustainable? Can you live on it?
So, my wife and I have talked about this for a long time and part of the reason for us purchasing a small amount of land (10 acres) was to determine how much land do you need. We have a conventional garden, orchard, berries, etc on about 2 acres of the land. We have our house, water, septic and power production on another couple of acres. But what do you do during the winter?
To figure that out, I design and fabricated a very sophisticated green house. Initially we used it to study aquaponics. We then tried a “FarmBot”. I’m now designing my own table system for growing in the green house.
Below are images of the green house construction. Its roughly 52’ long x 26’ wide by 12’ tall. Has dual, doubly redundant HVAC systems, fans, side and top louvers. It has access to both pure well water and also softened water.
I ran a pair of direct burial gig-Ethernet links to the green house to provide backhaul for our home audio/intercom system and to provide access via WiFi from an industrial switch and router.