I am looking for an energetic, permaculture wise, young couple (20s-30s) to help me create a small market and educational permaculture farm. This is a long-term farm opportunity with much flexibility and creativity as to how it can work and unfold.

The 4.8 acre farm is located NW of Vero Beach, Florida, nestled in an enclave of only five farms of 5-10 acres, and ten miles from the coast. The property has a large 3500 square foot, modern farmhouse, solar hot water and a/c, a pond with fish and a big waterfall, chicken coop with hens, many beautiful trees and wide open spaces waiting to be planted. I have already planted over 40 trees, built 7 garden beds, an orchard and one food forest. The edible gardens and orchard now include banana, avocado, loquat, guava, mango, pomegranate, pineapple. citrus, chaya, coffee, coconut, sapote, moringa, fig, june plum, blackberries, strawberries, dragon fruit, passion fruit, mulberry, Thai ginger, turmeric, edible hibiscus, sabdariffa and assorted veggies and herbs.

My vision for the farm includes a solar heated, salt water pool, a solar pool house with a wood oven, native plants to sell, a large greenhouse in which to grow microveggies and micro greens for market, more orchards and food forests, raised beds, and a French sustainable dome to serve as the place for classes, workshops, events like farm to table, fundraisers, small lectures, making farm products like jams and essential oils and also serve as a hurricane shelter/extra living space.

My goal is to get the farm into income production ASAP with one project…and keep going. My current vision is that you share living in the main house that is spacious with two wings, pay a negotiated rent and work for free to start, have the option to lease a field in which to do your own thing or share in all the projects and profits and have free food from the garden. I may also have paid work for you as permaculture garden installers for outside garden design jobs. Eventually, I envision you managing and running the farm, and there is space to build you a guesthouse.

You must have a strong background in gardening, especially permaculture, farm life and knowledge of trees, plants, soil, seeds, greenhouse growing and some biz marketing would be helpful. I have my PDC and am working on my PEC, the educational certificate. I have lots of knowledge to share and I am open to learning from you as well.

The beauty of growing in Florida is the speed at which everything grows. This is hurricane territory, and while I worry about the damage they can do, many plants have a strong rebound capability here. It is a risk we take living in this growing paradise, but there are permaculture ways to create strong windbreaks, redirect water and plant with protection in mind. Many places on the planet now are facing new weather challenges when it comes to growing food and which is threatening food abundance.

Growing season in Florida is November through April when the weather tends to be high and dry, breezy and beautiful. We get some cold snaps down to 42 degrees in December and January that are short lived, but freezing temps and winter rains are possible when the jet stream dips lower than normal. May and June get warmer, but the high humidity and heat arrive in full force along with frequent rains come July through October. You will sweat like a fountain here in summer, do farm work in the earlier hours of the day, enjoy the pool or the ocean in the afternoons and stay cool in the a/c at night. Summer is our winter when we spend more time indoors. By mid-late November, the a/c goes off and life shifts to the outdoors.

The worst gardening pest here is the fire ant, not the mosquito, that is only a nuisance at certain times. The fire ants are continuous and need constant spraying with orange oil and molasses since I choose not to use chemicals….although I am tempted! Summer brings more pests, fungi and viruses to the plants that need monitoring, especially as it is the fruit tree season. There are raccoons, foxes, bob cats, possums, armadillos and few snakes to deal with, as well as the ospreys that want to eat the fish in the pond and the falcons and eagles that prey on the hens. But Florida has the most exquisite birds that come to visit the pond, like snowy egrets, big blue herons and all kinds of rare beauties. There are breezes almost daily due to the proximity to the ocean.

I am a young, strong, active 65 year old woman with a dream to create a tropical paradise full of edible abundance that generates profits and educates others in the permaculture way of life. Food and resourceful living are going to be paramount as the extreme new climate continues to destroy global crops, and we descend deeper into this period of solar cooling.

I have the land, and seek a couple to share in the creative vision for what is possible here. If you are looking for a long-term opportunity, full of flexibility and possibility, to make a dream into an income producing reality like I am, then please contact me at anniehorkan@gmail.com and we can talk further.

Tropical flower bed
Front of the house with tropical flower bed
Veggie bed
Back of the house with large kitchen garden bed
North porch
North portal overlooking the pond
Evening portal
Evening on the north portal
View along fence
View along the front fence
Grapevine arch
Grapevine leading to the orchard
Tropical orchard
Kitchen orchard
Bananas
Lots of bananas
Herbs in kitchen garden
Herb garden
waterfall view
Kitchen garden and view of the waterfall
Food forest
Food forest
Rainbow over compost
Compost area and a nice rainbow
Hens in the yard
Hens in the chicken yard and the future harvesting shed
Fruit trees
Mature mulberry and mango trees, some sugar cane and the big field waiting to become a market garden
Large kitchen
Spacious open kitchen
Sun porch
New screened porch and Pica the cat
Bedroom
Large master suite with bath where you can stay