New Urban Homesteading Book!

From the Urban Homsteading Website

Overview
Urban homesteading is a growing movement in this country, part of the global re-imagining of culture on the other side of governmental indifference and corporate greed. Concerned about climate change and peak oil? Thinking about localizing your food sources? Wondering how to manage water, waste and energy better? Trying to raise your children with positive, life-centered values? Interested in community building and local self-reliance? Looking for resources for taking care of yourself while taking care of the world?

This book will answer these questions and provides an inspirational how-to and why-to for the urban homesteading movement. Richly illustrated with drawings and photographs, and featuring interviews with homesteaders “on the ground”, Urban Homesteading will give you an introduction to urban permaculture, the power of creating a personal sustainability plan for yourself and your neighborhood, and detailed how-to descriptions on the basics of do-it-yourself ecological living in the city.

Written by Rachel Kaplan with K. Ruby Blume. Photos, maps and original artwork by K. Ruby Blume. Drawings by Marco Aidala.

***Note the author of this book and other works similar to it are in a trademark dispute with the Devaeses family who I initially thought had a cool sub-urban permaculture thing going in Pasedena CA but have now come to see that they’re a bit full of themselves for trademarking terms like “Urban homestead”.  You can find more about this dispute here.

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Best Resources for Retrofitting Suburbia Permaculture Style

by @gaiapunk
One of the major reasons I work in permaculture is because as a eco-city researcher I’ve seen the devastating effects of urban and suburban environments out of balance with natural principals.  It was my investigations in eco-city research that made me into a passionate permaculture activist because I saw how beautifully the design principals in permaculture imitated the evolutionary intelligence of nature’s own design work.  This new outlook changed the way I looked at our modern challenges and gave me a new story to believe in regarding humanity’s potential to help in the regeneration of our planet.  A huge modern challenge to this end is retrofitting our urban and suburban to be more resilient, productive, and ecologically harmonious.  One important thing to make note of is that as we make areas more attractive we need to be cognizant of economic divisions and use models like community land trust, co-ops, and mixed income planning to make sure the benefits of improvements can be shared by everyone.  This retrofitting revolution is a massive and essential undertaking presented nicely above by Ellen Dunham Jones author of Retrofitting Suburbia: Urban Design Solutions for Redesigning Suburbs.  I’m dedicating the rest of this post to give you best retrofitting resources I know so you can join me in creating better places both for the health of ourselves and the planet.
Shareable.net: This site features some of my favorite retrofitting content and has a focus on making society more shareable.
City Repair: is a retrofitting force to be reckoned with which started in lovely Portland Oregon and whose model of community based organizing and place making has spread all over the US
Suburban Permaculture: Jan Spencer is a consummate expert on suburban permaculture retrofitting, a good friend, and a great inspiration.
inhabitat:  Features great articles on urban retrofitting.
Planetizen: Great place to find recent retrofitting articles

Suburban Permaculture?

It’s time to get retro….

retrofit that is

Hey everyone I really wanted to share this great video about my good friend Jan Spencer’s suburban permaculture retrofit house in Eugene, OR.  Jan is a extremely knowledgeable permaculturalist, a awesome mural painter, and all around upbeat and very friendly guy.  We first met two years ago during his west coast permaculture bike tour and we had a great time together coming back with some friends from the Ecocity World Summit in San Francisco.  He showed us around his place which was such a cool retrofit I thought I would share it with you here.