You can see from the satellite image how dry this place is. Note the rainshadow effect created by The San Bernardino Mountains to the west of us. The only similar climate analog I’ve been able to find on earth with the same latitude, proximity to the west coast of a large land mass, similar altitude and rain shadow effect is Damascus, Syria.
My family and I are beginning an experiment on our little piece of Mojave Desert land to see if it is possible, through permaculture, to create a hardy and resilient living system around us, which can begin to provide for our needs more and more, and radicallly reduce our need for inputs from outside our local Joshua Tree area. Beyond this, we hope to see if it is possible to eventually begin to yield enough of a surplus of food, products and information from the system to begin to be able to contribute to the growth of a truly local food culture and economy here. The daunting, yet exciting challenge is to move toward these aims in ways that work within natural limits of this extremely arid ecosystem, always with an eye towards the welfare of future generations of life on this planet, and in keeping with the ethics of permaculture. Our intention is to chronicle the adventure here, for the benefit of the global permaculture community, and specifically those working in arid desert climates.