Abundance Farm

Center for Ecology and Humanity

Carazo, Nicaragua

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May 2006 Tour of Finca La Abundancia:

The New Abundance Farm in Las Mercedes
In April of 2006, we decided to relocate to Yasmina's family homestead.  This is what our part looked like after her dad had burnt the reside from a sorghum planting.
Yasmina measured out a spot and put the neighbors to work digging the basic foundation.  Here is what the house site looked like after the first day.
Yasmina and Peter were funding and transporting building materials as fast as possible to beat the rainy season.
Sometimes the progress seemed too slow.  Too many carpenters with hangovers.
We found ourselves bathing in the nearby waterfall to combat the heat.
  There is also a swimming hole.
And even a rope swing. Here goes Jose!
Finally we were ready to move in.  Leonidas (Yasmina's Dad) helped.
Everything was packed in sacks, Nicaraguan-style.
Yasmina immediately started hanging the important things up on the wall.
Peter finally knew it was home when his sofa arrived.
We immediately put the neighbors to work on a chicken coop.  This is what they got done.  Then (it being a Saturday) we made the mistake of paying them for the week, and so the next three days they were just seen stumbling around town drunk.  Peter and Yasmina finshed the chicken coop.
After three days tied up, the chickens rejoiced. (They now also have a fenced yard outside.)
We often have a hen or two sitting on eggs or caring for chicks.  This one was the best mom you could imagine. 
Every day we have lots of eggs.  Sometimes we harvest roosters too.
The rain finally came.  We immediately improvised this water system.
We put ourselves to work building an outdoor storage and eating area.

It includes this new kitchen Yasmina is showing off.


Neighbors often come by in the evening to see how we are doing.

When it rained again, we decided to plant yucca.  We brought in the neighbor with his oxen to plow.
Another neighbor, Pablo, cut up yucca into pieces for planting. Note how the yucca stalks are stored, in the background. During the dry season, this valuable germplasm material must be watered regularly.
Yet another neighbor, Clara, carried the yucca out to the field, where her children helped plant it.  Yasmina supervised and made juice.
After a few weeks, the yucca started to come up. 
We also planted corn, beans, sugar cane, tomatoes, peppers, soybeans, summer squash and sweet potatoes.
After that, we went to town and sold some charcoal.  Here Peter and Yasmina are packing it in small bags.
We sell the charcoal by the sack (in the background) and by the bag (in the forground).