CoMo Homestead is Annette and Charlie’s story of urban homesteading in Columbia, Missouri.
We’re living a more healthy and self-sufficient lifestyle by growing as much of our own food as possible. We are also big proponents of non-motorized transportation, and bought our home specifically because of its great location for walking and biking.
We don’t have a farm with acres and acres of land. We don’t even have an acre of land. What we do have is a 50×150′ lot in the middle of the city (0.17 of an acre, if you’re wondering) and an old 1920s home that we’ve gutted down to the studs and are in the long process of remodelling.
What was our inspiration to start urban homesteading? The original Urban Homesteaders.
Annette is a Heart of Missouri Advanced Master Gardener, is trained in food preservation and also has a Master’s degree in Nutrition. For her day job, Annette coordinates programs for University of Missouri Extension that teach kids about gardening, farming and where their food comes from. She does the majority of the writing for CoMo Homestead, and spends most of her day thinking about food. Okay, all of her day.
Our gardening practices:
We use raised bed gardens as our primary form of food production. The specific raised bed technique we use is taught by Len Pense in his Gardening Revolution e-book. We have four 4×16′ raised beds in our back yard that we use to grow most of our annual fruits and vegetables.
We use intensive gardening techniques to maximize the amount of food we’re able to grow in a small amount of space. We’re also planning to start working with cold frames so we can grow our own year-round.
Our approach to the controversial use of fertilizers and pesticides is that we are preferentially organic, but not dogmatically so. We’re still learning a lot about what it takes to successfully grow food and build a healthy soil that will support healthy plants, and may have a stronger opinion on this as our knowledge and experience grows.
The books that have taught us what we know:
- Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long
- The New Organic Grower: A Master’s Manual of Tools and Techniques for the Home and Market Gardener (A gardener’s supply book)
- How to Grow More Vegetables and Fruits (and Fruits, Nuts, Berries, Grains, and Other Crops) Than You Ever Thought Possible on Less Land Than You Can Imagine
- McGee & Stuckey’s Bountiful Container: Create Container Gardens of Vegetables, Herbs, Fruits, and Edible Flowers
- Root Cellaring: Natural Cold Storage of Fruits & Vegetables
Follow us as we transition from house to homestead.
- Links to Amazon are through Amazon Associates, which so far has earned us a grand total of $0.15. We’re still waiting for our check.