Originator of Square Foot Gardening.
(click picture to visit Square Foot Gardening)
I have been thinking about selling my condo on the beach and moving to the boonies. So for the last few months I have been slowly getting all the repairs, painting, upgrades, etc. done so if I decide to sell, the place will be ready to go on the market. This week I had new carpeting installed and some plumbing done, so just a little cleanup and painting to do. Mentioned this to my neighbor, who is a renter, and she said “I’ll Buy It”.
So now What’ll I Do?
I’m free to go anywhere – nothing tying me to any particular place. But I have to decide quickly because I have to move out by end of September. I could always buy an RV and travel the country for a while. Seriously considered this, but don’t think traveling by myself would be much fun. I could rent an apartment for a while until I figure out what to do and where to go. This seems like a giant step backwards. I’m sitting here now looking out my window at sailboats on the Chesapeake Bay and people sunbathing on the beach. I need to find something that will top that!
When I was a little kid, we had 3 H-U-G-E gardens – and I had to weed a row a day all summer long. I hated it. Too young to appreciate fresh fruits and vegetables, just knew that pulling weeds is one of the most boring and unpleasant tasks known to kids everywhere. So now I am thinking of moving to the boonies and starting a market farm – growing produce to sell at farmer’s markets and restaurants. I must be nuts.
But I recently came across a reference to Square Foot Gardening – a method of gardening that increases yields and almost eliminates weeds. And the beds can be raised so that I can do most of the gardening standing up. I have been looking for a new business idea for the last 4 years and this is the first idea I have been excited about. I think its the almost total control I would have from planting the seeds, to caring for the plants, to harvesting, to selling. If it works its because I did a good job. And if it fails, no one to blame but me.
So maybe it is the hope – the beauty – the peace – of the garden that calls to me. A backyard that is a beautiful tapestry of plants of different textures and colors. The satisfaction of eating what I have grown with my own labor. Eating fresh foods that are not polluted with chemicals that simply make the food look like its still good – after being shipped halfway around the world.
So I have been studying maps and looking up real estate prices. Where can I move that has basic services like a YMCA, a Lowes or Home Depot, a farmer’s market, some nice restaurants, and good recreational opportunities like boating, fishing, and hiking? And since I currently live in Virginia, staying in Virginia is my first choice – not a requirement – just my first choice.
So I came up with Danville, Virginia (last capital of the Confederate States of America) which is right on the North Carolina border about half way across the state. Within an hours drive are 3 large lakes, the Blue Ridge Mountains, many historic sites, and a couple larger cities. And real estate is CHEAP!
Danville is a city in transition. Its history is of tobacco warehouses and textile manufacturing (Dan River, Inc) – but both are gone. Danville appears to be in a state of revival – and has an excellent business climate recently attracting several new businesses.
So I have several ideas for businesses – market farming, fresh baked bread and other goodies (in a cob oven) , and selling used books. Just make a little off each and I will be fine. Also might look for a fixer-upper to fix up, after I fix my own up. Then its time for
So if anyone knows about the Danville area, please share. I need to decide within the next week or 2. Oh well, if it doesn’t work out, I can just try somewhere else.