Videos: Creating Sustainable Small Farming Projects

Author: 
Erin Rasmussen

Richard Haard, Bellingham, Washington October, 2010

I've been working with Michael Pilarski, Skeeter of Friends of the Trees http://www.friendsofthetrees.net/ , in North Central Washington to produce a series of videos about his work to create sustainable small farming projects. In this set of 12 videos Skeeter demonstrates his method to create a family agroforestry farm under 5 acres. These farms produce much food and some income for operator support. Most important it creates forested, sheltered, self reproducing ecosystem. Two of these videos, Sunny Pine and Whispering Pines illustrate examples 14 and 28 years old that are still producing annual food and medicinal products. Over this period these agroforestry projects have developed into vivid green oasis of cooling shade in this shrub steppe semi-desert ecosystem of his home in north central Washington.

Making sustainable food/forest systems has been become a life long mission for this man. Skeeter is well known to many of us in the Northwestern USA as lecturer on permaculture and organizer of barter fairs and tree exchanges over the last 30 years.

For myself, I am a grower of native plants and first met Skeeter during Tree sales in Bellingham 25 years ago. Since then at times, I've helped him and sat in on his classes about permaculture, ethnobotany and medicinals over the years and came to respect this person for his knowledge, his personal sense of mission and his vision for a sustainable future in this era of declining resources we are now entering.

Richard Haard, Bellingham

This spring and fall series of videos is now completed for this year. In total is over 2 hours of video. I hope you enjoy and share with others this information about sustainable farming.

Here is the first set of agroforestry videos I posted on youtube last spring. Each video is about 6 to 10 minutes.
They include:

Here is the new set of videos taken October 1. Especially worth watching is the Whispering Pines Series. This set is about the first agroforestry/food production projects Skeeter established almost 30 years ago. Videos in this series are longer, each about 15 minutes. In them, Skeeter is able to speak longer about individual species and how he plans and manages the projects. Note that many of them have been turned over to other people who currently operate them for personal food production and farming business ventures.
Individual links are:

And here is a bonus set about collecting and using wild plants for food and medicinal purposes.