Friday, 16 August 2013
Well, it isn't, and it didn't.
I'm not currently in France, and not likely to be for a little while, but I've created a Facebook group for anyone wanting to discuss urban farming in Paris, and maybe hopefully find some others to do stuff with:
The greenhouse got taken out by a wind storm, turns out flat walls on plastic structures is stupid. So now I know that. In the time since I've been developing other bits of open source tech, most which actually seem to be working, you can see what I'm up to at http://solarflower.org
Among other things there you can find the blog where I'm posting how it's all going.
This year I'll be travelling through Australia, Asia, and the Middle East back to Europe, working with people along the way to design and implement low tech, scrap makable alternative infrastructure.
Going to be a crazy year.
Thursday, 15 September 2011
Last month's been spent in Ireland, wwoofing on a pretty decent community called The Hollies and spending time with some good friends from Scotland.
As of yesterday tho I've arrived in Leipzig, former East Germany, for the dual purpose of prototyping a couple solar energy ideas (check http://solarflower.blogspot.com for updates) and just seeing what's going on here.
So far, it seems; a lot.
I'm staying with a friend, who informs me that to buy the entire building her flat's in would set you back about €40k, with something less renovated being about half that, and less still at auction. If you come to the city with a business idea the council will offer you free office and work space. Most streets I'd say about a third to a half of the buildings have been abandoned for decades. The main commercial street near here is two thirds empty, and it remains the commercial strip because it's doing so well in having any at all.
And that's why so many people have started coming here. If you want to get a project off the ground, or try something new and need workspace, or want to build a community, Leipzig will let you, and for free.
With regards to urban farming I'm not yet sure how much is happening. There's large number of allotments around the city, but judging by them being almost entirely lawn and flowers, I'm thinking the average age of ownership would be edging up on the average life expectancy.
I'd love to see some greenhouses built here.
Saturday, 30 July 2011
We also had a few troubles lining up materials, as Paris just inexplicably lacks certain things, like greenhouse plastic. But we had a few leads and probably would've got it sorted this week.
So that's that then. I'm going to talk to some people in Cork when I arrive, there's a fairly well established permaculture school there and maybe a bit more interest than here.
But this was always more of an experiment / temperature check than a project I was determined to see through. I simply don't yet know how viable this kind of approach to food production is in Europe and other Western countries. It won't happen until there's the will to do it, and I have doubts that currently there is. When I'm in more developing countries I imagine the dynamic will be somewhat different.
Mind you, this is Paris. If I'd really wanted to give this thing its best chance I would've gone to Copenhagen or Berlin. But I just wanted to hang out in Paris for the summer.
And now Ireland.
I'll keep you posted.
Wednesday, 20 July 2011
We now seem to have numbers, so
IT HAS BEGUN.
Next step meeting, at this stage looking like afternoon of Monday the 25th, tho this may change. More info to follow.
Nous avons maintenant semblent avoir des chiffres, de sorte
Réunion La prochaine étape, à ce stade sans doute après-midi du lundi 25, mais cela pourrait changer. Plus d'info à suivre.
Thursday, 14 July 2011
C'est maintenant un appel ouvert pour les participants dans la construction de la première serre, être terminé d'ici début août. Nous avons un bon emplacement, de l'argent et les matériaux sont simples, nous avons juste besoin des gens.
Quand je reçois au moins quatre noms que je vais appeler la réunion de poing, et nous allons commencer.
ufcparis at gmail com
Aussi, nous avons maintenant une proposition crowdfunding travers Indiegogo.com pour couvrir le coût de la première serre:
I've met permaculturalists, guerilla gardeners, squatters, the Zeitgeist movement, urban farmers, artists, engineers, transition towners, and everyone else in Paris there is to meet.
This is now an open call for participants in building the first greenhouse, to be finished by early August. We have a good location, money and materials are basic, we just need people.
When I get at least four names I'll call the fist meeting, and we'll begin.
ufcparis at gmail com
Also, we now have a crowdfunding proposal through Indiegogo.com to cover the cost of the first greenhouse:
Monday, 4 July 2011
Also been talking briefly with a girl who's been involved with urban farming in the states, says in Detroit, Philadelphia and New York especially there's quite a scene going. So hopefully whatever we develop here can be of help. No one seems to be following the mobile greenhouse model, no real idea why...
And.. talked to a dude involved in the local Zeitgeist Movement, who reckons they've been talking up the idea of urban hydroponics for a while now, so hopefully can tie in with them as well.
Tuesday, 28 June 2011
And here's where it is:
The lot is being used by the Ecobox community garden, and they seem pretty interested in the project.
Not a problem that it's asphalt as we'll be coming up off the ground with raised beds, shelves etc. I have serious reservations about planting in city soil anyway, due to heavy metals and other toxins. We'll be making our own, probably through a combination of compost, manure, a trailer full of dirt from outside the city, and possibly even a bio-digester.
The only issue with it being a solid surface is not being able to sink a cooling system, which after the last two freakishly hot days here in Paris (up to 38 C), is starting to look like an important addition. There is, however, a grassy bank just over that fence, so I'm thinking to put the water tank in that and just run the hoses to it.
Now just need to start building...
Le lot est utilisé par le jardin communautaire Ecobox, et ils semblent assez intéressés par le projet.
Pas de problème que c'est l'asphalte que nous allons venir sur le sol avec des lits surélevés, des étagères etc, j'ai de sérieuses réserves sur la plantation dans le sol ville de toute façon, à cause de métaux lourds et autres toxines. Nous allons faire le nôtre, sans doute grâce à une combinaison de compost, de fumier, une remorque pleine de saleté de l'extérieur de la ville, et peut-être même un bio-digesteur.
Le seul problème avec elle étant une surface solide est de ne pas pouvoir couler un système de refroidissement, qui, après les deux derniers jours freakishly chaud ici, à Paris (jusqu'à 38 ° C), commence à ressembler à un ajout important. Il ya, cependant, un talus gazonné peu plus de cette clôture, alors que je pense de mettre le réservoir d'eau dans ce juste et exécuter les tuyaux à elle.
Il nous suffit maintenant de commencer à construire ...
Friday, 17 June 2011
|What I want to do is this: |
This isn't for demonstration purposes or raising awareness etc, this is to grow large quantities of good food year round. When we inevitably get moved on from a block, pack everything up and shift to the next. The only limiting factors are how much land we'd have access to and how many people are involved. All tech and infrastructure will be open source and hopefully we'll get copied.
Other potential projects to build in:
People we need:
If you are interested please contact me via ufcparis at gmail dot com
Notre but est de :
Le but n’est pas de faire une démonstration, ou un appel à la prise de conscience ….mais de faire pousser une grande quantité de nourriture chaque année.
Les personnes utiles à ce projet :
Si vous êtes intéressés, merci de me contacter via : ufcparis@gmail;com
Well, few finishing touches; maybe some double sided flooring tape to lock down the edges, and of course all the shelving to go in, but that's the structure wrapped and roofed.
9 meter triangle side
3.8 meters tall
100 square meters of plastic
35 square meter footprint
($95 for the plastic, about $25 for screws, nails, etc. All wood felled or recycled).
Took three of us about 7 days to build, not including getting the materials together, but it would've been about half that if we hadn't been inventing the thing as we went.
Next one will be done slightly differently, bit easier to construct but generally the same. Maybe a third larger...
Wednesday, 15 June 2011
Writing this from the Hong Kong international airport, gate 65. Arriving Germany (tomorrow?) and making a bee line for Paris. Got a place to stay last minute through Couchsurfing.
God I'm tired. (3 am biological time, been awake since 6 am (this??) morning, am now just over halfway through this trip with another twelve hour flight to go.)
Monday, 13 June 2011
My father's currently putting the final touches on the greenhouse, I didn't quite have time to do so myself, and he'll be sending down some photos soon which I'll post here.
I was planning to be travelling Europe this summer roadtrip style with the solarflower project, but that has now fallen through due to lack of funds. Got another idea tho, and will post it here shortly. Think you might like it...
Thursday, 9 June 2011
But it's looking pretty sweet. Photos tomorrow for sure.