Homestead on the Mountain

Building a sustainable home with the family. Gardening, Chickens, Composting and enjoying the outdoors.

One month ago our transition to Asheville took the next big step. We filled both cars and met the moving truck at our new mountain home.  I call the house our Mountain Home. In reality we are 10 minutes outside of the suburbs on an 8 acre tract tucked into the side of the mountain. The house is centered on the property and with the elevation and trees, we can’t see a single neighbor. After the years of city and apartment living, I am ecstatic for the change. The land was owned by the same family for 3 generations, and the house was built by the sellers. So before I go into all of the fun projects and stories of the property, i wanted to share a few of the realities of buying a large property on the side of the mountain.

  1. Moving anything up or downhill is an event. Decisions are made by how far uphill i need to carry it.
  2. Some items have not been touched in 20 years. This means the spiders have won that area.
  3. Did you know rotten eggs explode like M80s? They will set off a chain reaction after dropping a board in the barn. It was as bad as it sounds.
  4. After carefully moving the entire rotten egg disaster to the compost pile and burying it, your dog will wander over with rotten egg on his face.
  5. Mulch bags left over the summer turn into ant palaces.
  6. You should check how much spray is left in the wasp killer before rambo charging the hornets. Just enough to piss them off is not the right answer.

I will use this page as an index for our projects around the house. Our goal is to slowly build up the garden and chickens until we start providing a small portion of our own food. The projects are beneficial, our daughter enjoys playing with us and we get enjoyment from the results. Many of our friends ask about the projects and how they can start their own, so by sharing hopefully a few more people can get enjoyment from their own projects.

Month 1 Projects – Short Details on this page, click each link to learn more.

We got chickens!  Tons of pictures here that I will keep updating.  We converted a shed into a coop and trained them to free range around the house.

Serious amount of weeding in the flower beds. I want to keep all of the current plants alive for at least a year to see which ones flower. All of the weeds were used as straw for the chicken coop and starting the compost pile.

Composting for the spring.  A large compost pile, an earthworm box and a black soldier fly compost. I’ll have articles for them up soon.

Built our first two raised beds. We planted pumpkins to watch something grow. We might get some before it gets too cold, but really we were excited and wanted something. Will continue building raised beds for the spring.

Clearing old rotted wood, old nails and screws and removing fencing. Impossible to kid proof, but trying.

Month 2 Projects

Surprise! Replacing drywall and seals in guest bathroom.

Work out a plan on water flow for the property. Step 1 is making sure it flows away from house. 2nd is keeping the barn dry. 3rd is keeping the driveway from washing out. 4th is storing water for dry periods.

Mapping out the property line and current fencing. Our goal is to fence off the bottom 3 acres before spring with current fencing I pull from around the property.

Expanding the compost setups.