The Freedom Farm is located 12km outside of the tiny hilltop village of Maella in Aragon, Spain. We purchased the 3ha derelict olive and almond farm for 14,000 euros in 2018, you can read more about that here.
We believe “permaculture” is a modern word for a very old human practice that prioritises harmony with nature over personal and individual gain. It was this belief, among others, that gave us the strength to make the big step from first world city living to a low tech low impact life on a remote finca in the Aragonese mountains. Our desire to be in tune with nature and not overpower her has led us to make environmentally aware choices about the house, the land and the animals.
Our house is a 45sqm tiny home renovated in the traditional rustico style of the area. Using products made in Spain and local craftsmen it blends well with the landscape. The house was rebuilt in the 1940s on the site of much older foundations but when we took possession of it the place was in a very sorry state with a collapsed roof, mud floor, and deep structural cracks. Works began whilst we lived onsite in canvas tents, and after only 12 short weeks we were able to occupy our new home.
Our totally off grid tiny home produces its own water via rain collection into an underground tank and its own electricity via solar panels and a battery bank. Our waste water is piped directly to the garden and our sewage waste is composted onsite into humanure.
Located in the very centre of our 8acre property the house is extremely private with no line of sight from any public road, the nearest being several miles away the feeling is of total solitude, safety, and peacefulness.
Using permaculture books as our guide and after many many experiments, our organic, no dig, hugelkultur veggie garden has begun to feed us.
Our priority has always been to keep it as simple as possible. The water from our shower and sinks goes directly to the garden, as does the manure and soiled straw from the animals. This combination means that we are producing high quality organic compost right there where the plants are growing. It’s also low effort and low investment, we have no tractor because we have no need to plough. Instead of digging the soil down we are instead building it up.
Permaculture, observing and learning from nature to build resilient and sustainable systems that feed and replenish, that are water-wise and chemical free.
Hugelkultur, is the process of creating raised garden beds filled with decomposing wood, straw, garden waste and leaves. Hugelkultur is a regenerative gardening system that improves the soil with time, rather than depleting it.
Organic, produced without the use of chemical fertilizers, pesticides, or other artificial chemicals.
Living with, enjoying and looking after the animals is a fundamental part of daily life on the Freedom Farm. We do everything ourselves, by hand, without chemicals or medications.
Before the sun comes up goats are milked, chickens are fed and eggs are collected, dogs go out to protect the farm and everyone fits into a daily rhythm that requires no watch.
There is a lot of work involved in keeping animals but the reward is that we can produce our own fresh organic eggs, chicken, milk, cream and cheese.
What People Say about us…
“If there is one over-arching feeling that this experience with Max and Nick has left me with it is that no matter how stuck in a rut you are, or how few skills you have, transformation is always possible. We can change our lives in the most radical of ways, it’s just that most of the time we don’t have the courage or the imagination to do so.” Olivia Grundy, shared-earthliving.com