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Santa Clara a Velha
All Year: not August..it's too hot
Area (ha): 5.6
Persons: 1 to 6
Category: Other
Host ID: 1988
Country: Portugal

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Last Updated: August 4, 2017

On the edge of a beautiful lake in Southern Portugal is a steeply wooded valley,where I have an on-going woodland conservation project. Solar panels supply my energy needs and pump water from the lake,as part of the aim to create a sustainable lifestyle. I intend eventually to offer natural retreat Yurt holidays and craft workshops but at the moment need help with the following;
The organic vegetable and herb gardens: I follow traditional organic methods rather than permaculture,( although I incorporate some principles.) My vegetables grow in raised beds, in which I am aiming to improve the heavy clay soil with compost and manure, and am experimenting with a combination of mulches and drip irrigation.
Woodland management: making and maintaining paths and steps, especially in the wake of damage done by wild boar.
A major tree planting project is underway; we are preparing a hectare of land by clearing invasive shrubs and hope to plant 100s of native trees this winter, now that we have started the " Forests for the Grandchildren " project in earnest
Accomodation is in one of two refurbished vintage caravans, with good bedding.
Good, (mainly vegetarian) meals in a friendly atmosphere, and the odd glass of local wine are your rewards.. enjoyed in the main house where you can also use my lovely bathroom, with its very good shower.
I need friendly,helpful, independent people who are happy in a quiet, beautiful and very isolated situation, who can cope with hard physical work, ( even in rainy or hot weather!) and who have a sense of humour. We normally work about 5 hours a day, 5 or 6 days a week, though if you want a different arrangement, that is negotiable.
If you think you fit the bill and would enjoy sharing this very special place, please contact me. The lake is great to swim or just cool off in, and there's a kayak you can use..
I have spaces where camper vans can park, with lovely views of the valley.
Internet; I now have unlimited wi-fi, so volunteers can access the internet.


Volunteers have helped to make my dream of planting a forest begin to happen; 350 holes were dug on the top of the hill, and about half have already been planted; some with baby oaks which we grew from acorns, many with Medronheiros and other native trees ...

As well as the usual willing helpers, I am looking for someone with woodworking skills , and also for someone who would like to live on my land independently long term.

Update; July 2017; I am now accepting helpers from the beginning of October.
There is a lot of work to do, as I broke my ankle last May, so nature has taken over areas I have been unable to keep under control.
With the help of last winter's volunteers, I have now moved some raised beds to a terrace nearer the house, so am planning to create a new orchard/ forest garden in the space left.
I also want to build an outdoor kitchen and fresh air solar shower for one of the caravans....

You might like to see this video, made by a recent helper;

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sXdsSmmUnR0&feature=youtu.be

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