Buying the farm where I live

€2,980 of €10,000 goal

Raised by 43 people in 15 months
(português no fim)
Dear helpers,

my name is Atimati (Elsa) Aroso

two years ago, a friend and I rented a farm close do the Peneda Gerês National Park, in the northwest part of Portugal. After some time she went away and I stayed on the farm and made a new contract with the owners.

This contract says I can rent the farm for 7 years and buy it at any moment. I have two other farms on another part of the country that are for sell so, I thought that 7 years was more than enough to sell both places and get the money to buy this one.

Why sell the others and buy this one? Well, this one is special. The weather here is much better, the water and air are clean due to the proximity of the National Park, there are many rivers and small streams, there is still some wildlife and old forests. The energy here is peaceful, there is only one neighbour  wich I love a lot (a 83 years old lady with her family) and some empty farms (that are also for sell).

The farm is 5300 square meters and I live on a tiny wood hut. The land has a big granite house that needs some restoration. 3 to 4 rooms can be made inside. The water comes from a well and two times a week, I get water from the neighbour’s spring – pure clean water from the mountains. One of the other farm belongs to someone living in France and with their permission,  I am also using it (7500m2)

Since I am here, I bought and planted 102 fruit trees. The farm had already some fruit trees like, olive trees, oranges, some apples, peaches, plums, persimmons, pears and figs. I bought different varieties but also some sub tropical trees like avocados, dwarf orinoco bananas, carissa macrocarpa, annona cherimoya, white zapote, tangerines, feijoa, pitaya, pitanga, goiava, macadamia and others not subtropical  like pecan nuts, almonds, hazelnuts, nuts, pawpaw, prickly pear , azufaifo,  amelanchier, elaeagnus umbellata and all the berries. In total the farm has now, 131 fruit tree (this includes 10 olive trees and 6 orange trees that were already here).

In about two years, all the new trees will be bearing fruits. Just one avocado tree can yeld between 200 fruits (in a bad year) to 800 fruits. I have 3 grafted avocados (reed, bacon and hass) and two from seed.

I also have some herbs both medical or aromatic like white sage, salvia miltiorriza, several kinds of lavanda, several thymes, chenopodium ambrosioides (from Mexico), umkaloaba (from South Africa), curcuma and many others.

For the last two years, I’ve been “cultivating the soil” with regenerative soil technics. Regenerative farming is much better than organic, both for the environment and for our health. Regenerative farming, feeds and takes care of the soil and then the soil, feeds the plants. To reach the balance, it takes some effort and time the first 2 to 3 years but then, it is fantastic. Once you rebuilt the soil food web, and keep feeding it with cover crops, mulching and good compost, your plants will be strong and healthy and you can spend the hot summer afternoons, swimming in the river. No worries about pests and diseases.

Since some years, I am a Seed Guardian. I grow 36 varieties of winter squash, 5 of melons, 15 of tomatoes , 14 of peppers. I grow plants from all over the world like the cucumber from Sikkhim, Caigua from Peru, Shungiku from Asia, Luffa from South Asia, sugar cane from India, sweet potatoes from Africa, spilantres from north Brasil, jicama from Mexico, ashwaganda, neem and bhringaraj from India, Jurubeba from the amazon forest, the brasilean Ora-pro-nobis, Sophie Coco beans that were not commercial available for the last 300 years, the 7 years beans, Kyoto Red carrot from Japan, Lagrima peas from Spain (they cost 400€ per kg!!!) . This year, I will start growing my own quinoa (made some experiences last year that were good), amaranth, millet, teff and this year I expect to harvest a very old variety of wheat. Last year I tried Emmer wheat and it was not bad.

So, I’ve been very busy ☺.

The idea of putting so many fruit trees is not only to live  from the farm but also I would love to share the farm with some other people.  I want  to make it a school for regenerative farming and for meditation. The granite house is big enough to make 3 or 4 big rooms or 6 to 8 small rooms.

But last week, I got a phone call from the owners saying they want to sell the farm. They are from Italy and they went back there so they want to be free from taxes etc., from Portugal. This means, I will loose everything. I live with 6 cats and 6 dogs and it will not be easy to find a place where they can all live peaceful, running free and happy.

I might sell the other places and get the money to buy this one before someone else buys it..or not. So this is why I need your help.

I made this crowd-funding to raise the money to give for the first payment to the farm. This will be 10 000€. The total price for the farm is 50 000€ and I have to get the rest of the money in 4 years. This gives me time to sell the other two places.

Will you be so kind and help me buy this farm? Thank you.

                              -----------------
O meu nome é Atimati/Elsa Aroso,

há dois anos eu e uma amiga alugamos uma quinta no noroeste de Portugal, perto do Parque Nacional da Peneda Gerês. Passado algum tempo ela desistiu do projecto e fiz novo contrato de arrendamento.

O contrato é de 7 anos o que me daria tempo para vender duas quintas – uma de família e outra só minha – que ficam noutra parte do país e comprar estas.

Porque comprar esta em vez de ir para uma das outras? A de família é muito cara para mim e a minha, do Douro, não tem o clima especial que esta, do Minho, tem.

A quinta tem 5300m2, uma casa de granito que precisa de restauro e uma mini cabana em madeira que é onde vivo. Tem água de furo e duas vezes por semana, tenho direito a água de nascente que vem da vizinha de cima – a única vizinha que tenho e que adoro. Uma senhora de 83 anos e familia.

Nestes dois anos em que já moro aqui, plantei cerca de 102 árvores de fruto como as tradicionais macieiras, pereiras, ameixoeiras, pessegueiros, figueiras, diospireiros, tangerineiras, mirtilos, framboesas. aveleiras, nogueiras e amendoeiras mas também, abacateiros, pecan, pawpaw, macadamia, zapote branco, anoneira, feijoa, araça amarelo e vermelho, goiaba, pitaya, pitanga, carissa macrocrapa, amelanchier europeu, elaegnus umbellata, azufaifo, e tamarilho. Dentro de dois anos, todas as árvores de fruto que plantei irão dar fruto. A quinta já tinha 10 oliveiras, 6 laranjeiras e algumas das árvores de fruto mais comuns em Portugal. Ao todo agora são, 132 árvores de fruto.

Tenho também algumas plantas aromáticas e medicinais como umkaloaba da Africa do Sul, salva branca da America do Norte, salvia miltiorriza e outras salvas, vários tomihos, chenopodium ambrosioides do Mexcio,várias lavandas, alecrins, neem, ashwaganda e bhringaraj da India, Spilanthres da Amazonia, ora-pro-nobis do Brasil, e muitas outras.

Nos últimos dois anos tenho vindo a “cultivar o solo” com técnicas da agricultura regenerativa biológica. Esta agricultura é ainda melhor que a biológica para o ambiente e para a nossa saúde pois visa o uso zero de pesticidas etc.. Refazemos a rede alimentar do solo com o uso de plantas para adubo verde, cobertura de solo com matéria orgânica e bom composto. Não aramos, fresamos e cavamos quase nada. Ao restabelecer o equilibrio do solo e não destruindo os micro-organismos, as nossas plantas também entram em equilibrio com grande capacidade de se defenderem de ataques de predadores e doenças. Dá algum trabalho nos primeiros 2 ou 3 anos mas depois é fantástico e podemos passar as tardes quentes de verão, a nadar no rio sem nos preocuparmos com doenças e pragas.

Desde há alguns anos que sou Guardiã de Sementes. Este ano tenho 36 variedades de abóbora, 5 de melão, 15 de tomate, 14 de pimentas. Cultivo plantas de todo o mundo como o pepino do Sikkhim, a caigua do Peru, shungiku e luffa da Ásia, cana da açúcar da India, jicama do México, os feijões Sophie Coco – uma variedade que já não existia comercialmente há cerca de 300 anos. A cenoura Kyoto Red do Japão, a ervilha de grão Lágrima. Este ano vou semear quinoa, amaranto (estes já tenho semeado e dão-se muito bem), teff, millet e sorgo. Na terra de inverno tenho uma variedade de trigo muito antigo para colher em Julho. No ano passado semeei um pouco de trigo Emmer que deu muito bem embora esta zona, não seja zona de trigo.

Mas há duas semanas, recebi um telefonema dos donos a dizer que querem vender a quinta. Moram em Itália e não querem mais ter de pagar impostos em Portugal. Isto quer dizer, que perco tudo, todas as árvores de fruto e todo o trabalho de equilibrar o solo. Além disso, tenho 6 gatos e 6 cães (4 dos gatos e 3 dos cães já recolhidos nesta quinta) e fico sem lugar para eles viverem em paz, correrem e serem felizes.

Talvez consiga vender as outras duas quintas antes que alguém compre esta...ou não. E é por isso que preciso da vossa ajuda.

Criei este crowd-funding para conseguir dar a entrada para a quinta. O valor da entrada são 10 000€ e a quinta custa 50 000€. O contrato de promessa de compra e venda será de 4 anos o que me dá tempo para vender as outras quintas e pagar o que falta.


Será que me podem ajudar? Obrigada
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First of all...thank you so much to those who are helping.
This week I was offered 4 scions of plum cultivars and 4 scions of apples. I already grafted them so, I have now 139 varieties of fruits :-).
And yesterday I was offered seeds of the almost forgoton Medlar tree/Mespilus germanica. So...things are going good :-).

Em primeiro lugar, um grande muito obrigada a quem já contribuiu.
Esta semana ofereceram-me 4 garfos de ameixoeira e 4 de macieira. Já os enxertei por isso, tenho agora 139 variedades de fruta!
Ontem ofereceram-me sementes de Nespereira da Europa/Mespilus germanica, uma fruta esquecida por quase 100 anos.
Ou seja, está tudo a correr bem :-)

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There is a story told by Osho that kept coming to my mind the last days before I gather the courage to do this crowd-funding and ask for help.
It is the story of a kid who was trying to take a big stone from the house garden. He tried everything, used all the tools and after some time, he said "I give up".
His father was watching him from the beginning and asked: "are you giving up without trying everything first???" The boy was mad at his father and told him that he had tried all possible ways. Then the father smiled and said: " you did not ask for help yet".
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€2,980 of €10,000 goal

Raised by 43 people in 15 months
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