Thankfully, the nation seems to be getting back to our roots. The trend of homesteading is growing more popular by the season. Homesteading with a manufactured home is a great way to practice self-sufficiency, frugal living as well as being green.
Homesteading with a Manufactured Home

Growing up in southern WV the majority of us had some level of a self-sustainable homestead. I never knew there was a name for it, of course. Most everyone I knew had a garden, canned food and made quilts. They raised small animals and hunted for deer, squirrel, and turkey. It’s a beautiful way of life. It is simple and rewarding and should be honored.

Homesteading Basics

You don’t have to have a true farmhouse to have a farm. You don’t have to have 100 acres, either. An acre used efficiently and smartly, can provide most of a families nutrition. A half an acre can help tremendously. It’s all how about how you use the land, and work it so that it works for you.

If your focus is on green living, then you need to consider manufactured homes. Since they are factory built, there is a reduction in materials and energy used. They are perfect choices for the environmentally conscious. Many popular online homesteaders rescue older mobile homes to use as their homestead base. A favorite is The Walden Effect blog.

A wonderful reader and previously featured homeowner here on MMHL, Noelle Moser, has a small homestead in the foothills of the Appalachian. Her family uses a double wide for their homestead home, it’s a happy, country charmer they lovingly call the Country Clunker. Along with a garden, they raise chickens and have lots of plans for a self-sufficient homestead.

Homesteading with a Manufactured Home

Homesteading with a Manufactured Home

 

Homesteading with a Manufactured Home

Noella was kind enough to share some of her homesteading knowledge with us. She has a passion for a more natural way of life and it is catching on at an astounding rate. However, this lifestyle takes study and research. You have to have a working knowledge of several studies. Astronomy (Noelle’s BA) Here she answers some basic questions for us:

Give us some numbers, Noella.

When all is said and done and our plants and plans have come to fruition
we plan on harvesting 2,000 pounds of veggies, 60 pounds of fruit and berries, as well as
1,400 eggs. Also 100 pounds of honey per year from our 1-acre homestead. Of course, I will be canning a freezing a lot of the produce during the summer for use in the winter.

Homesteading with a Manufactured Home

How did a manufactured home become the heart of your homestead?

We could not do all of this if we did not live in a manufactured home. Because our house is not sucking us dry for house payments we are able to put a lot of money into cultivating our land. The site built homes that we looked at before deciding on an MFH were old and needed a lot of work. The land that they sat on was poor and unconducive to growing even weeds in my opinion. We found this beautiful tract of land in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains and put an MFH home on it and have never looked back since.

Are you a city girl or a country girl? 

As a background on my life with farming. I was raised on a 12-acre farm in northern Indiana, so farming and being around plants and farm animals is in my blood. From an early age, I was taught to work and take care of the animals and gardens. I have always been a
country girl. Now I am a country gal through and through and cannot live unless something green is growing around me. I am happiest when I am digging in the dirt.

Do you have to have chickens?

I do want to make the point that you do NOT have to have chickens in order to homestead. I know that there are many places where livestock is banned or at least the roosters are banned due to the noise that they can make.

What about the soil if I have no chickens?

If you cannot or do not want to keep chickens that is fine. But if you do not have chickens you will need to buy manure for your gardens. The soil will need to be nourished one way or another manure is the best way to achieve this. Because I have my chickens I can be totally self-sufficient not needing to rely on the purchase of manure to keep my soil rich and PH balanced.

 

Flowers? I thought flowers were just for looks? 

Adding flowers or a wildflower garden is a good idea. This will encourage pollinators such as bees and butterflies to be attracted to your garden. They will be attracted to the flowers then moving on to the blooms on your veggie plants. Good flowers for this are zinnias, coneflowers, marigolds, petunia’s, super bells, or verbena. All of these flowers are vigorous growers, cheap, and grow easily from seeds.  You can plant the flowers in pots in your gardens or just toss the seeds into the ground with your plants. In addition, some insects such as aphids, squash bug, stick bugs and some caterpillars do not like these flowers and will leave your plants alone. This is another way to grow organic reducing your need for chemicals.

Ok, I wanna try homesteading, where do I start? 

Have a plan. After you look at your property and take inventory of what kind of space you have, then design a plan. This helps for several reasons. It keeps things organized, focuses your efforts, and it’s like having a list when you go to the store it keeps you on track. We have a master plan for our backyard. We decided what we wanted and where we wanted it before we started tilling the ground. With the annuals, we have wiggle room, but once we put in the berry bushes, trees, and fig trees we are committed to that space. So having a plan will reduce and regret after planting something then wishing you planted it in another location. Planning gives your plants an assigned place even before you purchase them.

 

Irrigation? I thought that was for big farms?

In addition to planning your garden, you need to plan irrigation. This is another reason to have a plan. Right now we are running hoses from the house to the gardens when they need watering. After seeing our water bill for the last few months we are going to dig a well in the backyard for the gardens. We plan on using a solar pump to bring the water to the surface. This way we do not need to run electricity to the pump and can rely only on mother nature for irrigating our gardens.

 

 Bees? Do I have to have bees?

The bees will be our last and final addition to our homestead. In our plan, we planned on adding them last. We may even wait a few years after adding our final crops before adding them. The honey bee, in general, is in danger due to all the chemicals that people are using around homes and gardens. By adding bees we not only will be able to harvest our own honey but will also be providing pollination to our crops. Bees will only go about 1 miles from their hive in search of nectar for the honey. Buy having our gardens nearby they will not have to go far to find food and we will have pollination which will increase the yield of our produce.

If you’re dreaming of homesteading with a manufactured home, no fear, there’s lot’s of online resources, Google to your heart’s content. There are varying degrees of homesteading. Some go for complete off-the-grid living with as much self-sufficiency as possible. While others are happy with just having a garden and a few chickens. Every bit of homesteading that you do is positive. Not only for our mother earth but for our very souls, too.

As always, thank you for reading Mobile & Manufactured Home Living!

3 thoughts on “Homesteading With A Manufactured Home”

  1. Great information, thank you. 🙂 I’m looking forward to reading more and learning. What a wonderful life and it’s appreciated that you share with us!

  2. Wonderful article/interview! I also live in a mh (singlewide) on a ten acre homestead (S.AL) and by doing so we were able to do what we wanted to do without going into deep debt. At retirement ages, which we are, you have to plan ahead so you can live a life without money stresses. We run both our businesses from here, garden, have a fish pond for fishing/food, fruit trees and brambles, etc, etc….we are living the good life because of mhl….. 😉
    My recent post Chicken Pot Pie Cupcakes

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