Bullock’s Permaculture Homestead

I left Vancouver Island early in the morning to catch the ferry from Sidney, B.C. to Friday Harbor, WA and then catch another ferry from Friday Harbor to Orcas Island.  Orcas Island is where the Bullock’s Permaculture Homestead is located.  This place is very cool.  The Bullock’s Permaculture Homestead is home to the Bullock brothers and is one of the premier permaculture demonstration sites in North America.  The Bullocks are three brothers that have been living on and developing this site for almost 30 years.  There is quite a lot going on at this place.  Pretty much everywhere you look while walking around there are edible or useful plants that were either consciously planted or are native or naturalized species that were already there or filled a gap and were allowed to continue growing.  The buildings and gardens and food forests and animals were all working together to provide for the needs of the people living at the homestead.  All of the needs of the people living on the site were not provided from the land, but a large portion was indeed coming from the land.  Besides the Bullock brothers and their family’s, there were a couple of other permanent residents and a group of about 8 interns.  The site takes on interns seasonally from spring through fall every year.  The interns learn a lot while providing valuable skills and labor to the homestead.  The Bullocks have done a really good job at designing, building and developing this site and I highly recommend that you visit this place if you ever happen to be up in NW Washington.  One of the businesses that brings in a good bit of money for the homestead is a perennial plant nursery focusing on edible and useful plants that are adapted to the local climate.  I learned a good bit about grafting from these experts.  I stayed there for a long weekend and had a really good time.  I learned a lot, met some really cool people and was able to help them out with planting potatoes, propagating plants for their nursery and fixing a fence that a deer mangled in the night.  I really appreciated being around these folks and seeing what they’ve been developing at that place.  I also appreciated how friendly and hospitable and helpful they were to me even though I was only there for a short time, I felt very welcomed and comfortable there.  Thanks ya’ll, and keep up the good work.

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